WILL NOT PLAY
“We wanted a really great villain for Oliver in the flashbacks,” Guggenheim tells EW. “We wanted to come out of the gate strong with someone great and we wanted to, quite frankly, cast the best actor. As it turns out, our best actor was African-American.”
Akingbola is actually British with Nigerian ancestry, but EW didn't catch the oversight by Guggenheim.
“We took the name Baron Reiter without any intention of turning him into Baron Blitzkrieg,” he continues. “Baron Blitzkreig is the evil Nazi super villain. Baron Reiter is not going to become Baron Blitzkreig in the show.”
According to Guggenheim, the Baron Reiter that appears in Arrow season 4 has only a name in common with the comic book character, as well as his affiliation to the villainous Shadowspire organization.
“We never planned on actually telling a story about a bad guy who is a Nazi,” Guggenheim says. “In fact, when people meet this character, he’s not German, he’s not a Nazi, he doesn’t subscribe to any Nazi philosophies. We were attracted to an organization that actually in the comics had been associated with Deathstroke called Shadowspire. In the comics, Baron Reiter became associated with Shadowspire.”
“It’s all good. We were surprised because we mistakenly assumed that everyone was on the same page as we were, but why would they be? We haven’t told anyone anything about the flashbacks, but this was so obviously not our intention to do Baron Blitzkreig. If we were, in fact, doing a Nazi being played by an African American, I would expect us to be very duly Internet chastised.”