While stopping by Jimmy Kimmel Live! last night to promote his new show The Underground Railroad, William Jackson Harper opened up about what it was like to go viral when Twitter fan-casted him as Superman in the upcoming film from Ta-Nehisi Coates and J.J. Abrams. After reports confirmed that the film would feature a Black Superman, Harper’s name quickly hopped to the top of the list on social media (and he is no stranger to being jacked), and Kimmel couldn’t hide his jealously.
“Even if you don’t play Superman, it’s kind of awesome that people hear ‘Superman’ and think, yeah, you should be Superman,” the late night host said. “I don’t think there’s a single person in the world that goes, like, ‘Oh, they’re going to make a new Superman. You know Jimmy Kimmel would be great at that.’”
After laughing at Kimmel’s joke, Harper revealed that he was completely caught off guard by the Twitter reactions:
No, dude, it definitely blindsided me. It came up, I was doing another another interview, and this guy was like, ‘Yeah, this guy got 55,000 likes,’ and I was like, ‘What? Why?’ Who knows me? You know. But, yeah, I mean, that would be dope. That would be the best thing that could happen to me to be able to play Superman.
But I don’t want to do the diet and the exercise.
Kimmel then asked if Harper’s role as Chidi on The Good Place led to the fan-casting because he was always wearing glasses, and Harper agreed that has to be it. “That’s gotta be the only explanation,” he said. “I mean, otherwise, I’m just a nerdy professor dude.”
While the glasses thing probably helped, Harper and Kimmel are avoiding the (ripped) elephant in the room, and that’s the fact that Chidi is jacked. Just absolute muscle and practically demanding to be clad in tights, despite not wanting the “diet and the exercise” part of the role. Harper’s used to being jacked already, so how much further would he need to go for Superman?