Michael Jai White on ‘Black Dynamite’
The wait is over.
After a two-year hiatus, Adult Swim’s Black Dynamite returns Saturday, October 18 for its second season.
The hit animated series, based on the 2009 live-action film of the same name, stars Michael Jai White as the eponymous lead character and also features actors Tommy Davidson, Kym Whitley, and Byron Minns as Cream Corn, Honeybee and Bullhorn, respectively.
A smooth operator with serious martial arts skills, Black Dynamite is both a lover and the fighter. But what will it take for the action hero to settle down?
We chatted with White to find out what’s in store for the season, guest stars to watch out for and plans for a Black Dynamite sequel!
JET: What can viewers expect on the new season?
Michael Jai White: The second season really trumps the first season. We have the benefit of knowing what works and we’ve gotten a lot of feedback from fans on social media that we’ve used to our benefit. I think we’ve refined it to a point where we’re confident.
JET: Is there ever a racial topic the show won’t touch? If so, what is it?
MJW: There’s nothing we won’t touch racially. We have a platform to satirize some really poignant things and we try to do so in layers. We make political statements and have fun doing it. Those who are really receptive to it are going to be fed well. The audience just wants to have fun.
JET: We know Black Dynamite is a bit of a Casanova, but who is his dream girl?
MJW: I think Black Dynamite’s dream girl would probably be a hybrid of eight women rolled into one. He’s not a one-woman type of guy, so it’d probably take a lobotomy for him to to settle down.
JET: Are there any Blaxploitation legends that might join the cast or guest star on an episode?
MJW: We’ve got legends like Melvin Van Peebles lending his voice to the new season. He’s the man who started the urban action genre–the one who proved that it was viable in Hollywood. It was an honor to have him as a guest voice. We’ve got several guest stars, such as Erykah Badu, Sean Kingston, and Samuel L. Jackson- he was just tremendous. Sam was just all into it. He’s one of my favorite actors.
JET: With the success of the movie, are there any plans for another live action Black Dynamite?
MJW: My intention was always to do three different movies within the Blaxpoltiation genre. Black Dynamite was the first one. There’s another one we have in the works that I’m really excited about doing. People who love Black Dynamite will love this version. It’s very much like Monty Python where they have the same ensemble in another ’70s-era film. We hope to release it next year.
JET: Besides acting, I know you’re also into martial arts and motivational speaking. How do you combine the two?
MJW: I do a lot of things with at-risk kids and inner city children. Being a former school teacher, I’m still very sensitive to those issues. I’m constantly encouraging education and looking at things from multiple perspectives, not just your own. I want people to be students of humanity. These skills will follow you the rest of your life.
In martial arts, you’re constantly overcoming obstacles and they may be physical, but you have to overcome them by working hard and being diligent–that’s something that’s internal. If your will becomes strong, you can pretty accomplish anything, that’s really the message of martial arts. If my will is strong, that’s paramount even beyond technique. It’s about that strength of your will and knowing who you are–you’re powerful and can achieve anything you want.
Tune in to the season premiere of Black Dynamite Saturday, October 18 at 10:30 p.m. ET on Adult Swim