Apparently some people have been a little confused about why the Star Wars trailer featured a black man wearing a Storm Trooper’s armour. The character is called Finn.
The confusion arises due to the story told in Attack of the Clones as to how the Clone Army came to be brought about. The troopers were clones of Madalorian bounty hunter Jango Fett. Fett of course also being the father of cult Star Wars character Bobba Fett.
Temura Morrison who played Jango is a Maori but does not look like Boyega.
By the time the events of A New Hope came round, the original clone soldiers were beginning to age and it seemed a natural choice for the Empire to recruit willing men (and maybe woman?) into their army. I have a feeling I read somewhere the Emperor also destroyed the original clone facilities too which probably hampered things.
The Force Awakens is set some 30 odd years after Jedi – so causal fans could be forgiven for being a bit confused as to why John Boyega suddenly popped up.
Those who complained that there was a black man on the screen cannot be forgiven. As Boyega notably said shortly after the trailer’s release “get used to it”. Fine words.
If you count Empire as being one of the first BIG films to feature a black man in a film, Star Wars has lead the way in that department. Side note - Alien which was released in 1979 featured Yaphet Kotto - he actually turned down the role of Lando Calrissian thus giving Billy Dee Williams to cement his career.