Black Film has confirmed through a “reliable source” that actor Derek Luke will be playing the role of Gabe Jones in the upcoming Captain America movie. Luke has appeared in things like Miracle at St. Anna and Notorious before signing up with Marvel.
The character of Gabe Jones, in comic lore, is one of the original members of Nick Fury’s elite squad of soldiers The Howling Commandos. So not only does this news confirm for me what role Luke will be playing in the movie, it also confirms for me that The Howling Commandos are going to be a part of the story. Did everyone know this already? I had known Neal McDonough was cast as Dum Dum Dugan, but this points to the fact that the rest of the squad will show up in the film as well.
Jones is kind of a big deal in the Marvel Comics version of WWII because he is one of the first black soldiers to fight in a racially integrated unit. In the Marvel film universe, where Nick Fury himself is a black guy, some of the specialness of the character is bound to have been stripped away. I have to wonder how big his part will be and how big a role The Howling Commandos will have in the film’s story. I would love to get at least one big sequence where they accompany Cap on a mission Inglorious Basterds style.