Just last week we heard that Marvel will not be using CGI to bring back Chadwick Boseman for the Black Panther sequel. The 43-year-old actor shockingly passed away from cancer three months ago, with many – including Marvel – not having been aware that he had privately been battling the disease for years. That left Marvel in a very tricky spot as his King T’Challa was supposed to be one of the key figures in the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And if the comic book studio wasn’t going to digitally resurrect him to at least give his character a send-off, how would they tackle his absence?
Well, it would appear that Marvel boss Kevin Feige and returning Oscar-nominated director Ryan Coogler has figured something out as Black Panther 2 is scheduled to start production in July 2021. That’s according to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, who is usually on the money with these things. The report claims that Coogler and co will start shooting in Atlanta, Georgia and the shoot will apparently be a huge one, expecting to last 6 months. That is massive! Clearly, Marvel is doing something rather intricate to pull this off.
While story elements are still tightly under wraps, THR’s sources confirm that Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, and Angela Bassett will all be back. Most importantly, “Wright’s character Shuri may take on a more prominent role”. That last line lends support to the theory that the movie will see Shuri inherit the mantle of the Black Panther from her kingly brother, just as what happened in the comics during writer Reginald Hudlin’s acclaimed “The Deadliest of the Species” run in 2018. While Marvel usually keeps its cards pretty close to its chest, I have a feeling that if this is the case, given the fan reaction to Boseman’s passing, they may make some kind of announcement about it to assuage fears.
As for the rest of the film, there is a bit of news as THR’s report also brings word that Narcos: Mexico actor Tenoch Huerta has joined the production as one of its main antagonists. Your guess is as good as mine as to just which role he’s going to play though. We’ve already seen Black Panther’s two most iconic villains in Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) and Klaw (Andy Serkis), not to mention Man-Ape, who was reinvented as frenemy M’Baku (Winston Duke). The problem is Black Panther has never had the best rogues gallery and the remaining great villains – namely, Namor the Submariner and White Wolf – are all closely tied to T’Challa and not Shuri, if she is to be the new Black Panther (and there’s the small issue of Namor’s tangled movie rights). But I guess now that a plan is in place, we may start seeing some details coming out.
Last Updated: November 23, 2020