Titular Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman may tragically not be with us any longer after shockingly succumbing to his private battle with cancer, but as we all know: Wakanda is forever! Writer/director Ryan Coogler is already set to (somehow!) start filming the sequel to his groundbreaking 2018 Marvel Comics superhero blockbuster later this year, but now it’s been announced that this won’t be the award-winning filmmaker’s only business in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In a press release, Marvel has announced that Coogler’s Proximity Media production house has signed an exclusive five-year deal with Marvel owners Disney to develop TV projects for the House of Mouse. And the first of these is already underway as Coogler is developing a new TV series set in Black Panther aka King T’Challa’s home kingdom of Wakanda for the Disney+ streaming service.
Disney Executive Chairman Bob Iger said in a statement that “Ryan Coogler is a singular storyteller whose vision and range have made him one of the standout filmmakers of his generation.”
With Black Panther, Ryan brought a groundbreaking story and iconic characters to life in a real, meaningful and memorable way, creating a watershed cultural moment. We’re thrilled to strengthen our relationship and look forward to telling more great stories with Ryan and his team.
Coogler added that “It’s an honor to be partnering with The Walt Disney Company. Working with them on Black Panther was a dream come true.”
As avid consumers of television, we couldn’t be happier to be launching our television business with Bob Iger, Dana Walden and all the amazing studios under the Disney umbrella. We look forward to learning, growing, and building a relationship with audiences all over the world through the Disney platforms. We are especially excited that we will be taking our first leap with Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso and their partners at Marvel Studios where we will be working closely with them on select MCU shows for Disney+. We’re already in the mix on some projects that we can’t wait to share.
As you can see by Coogler’s statement, more MCU productions are in the pipeline, but nothing is stopping the filmmaker and his company from also developing non-Marvel series for Disney. In fact, I would be very surprised if that wasn’t the case as Disney makes its big push with Disney+.
As for the Black Panther spinoff series though, the most obvious comic book inspiration would be the Agents of Wakanda team created by writer Jason Aaron in 2018 during his Avengers run. Formed by the then newly-appointed Avengers chairman T’Challa, the Agents were an intelligence-gathering unit designed to covertly assist and support the more publicized superheroes like the Avengers. The Agents would also serve as a replacement for SHIELD which had been dissolved after an evil-version of Captain America (created by Hydra) subverted the organization to take over the USA.
The Agents members were handpicked by Black Panther and Dora Milaje leader Okoye, with the latter also serving as the director of the unit. The other members of the team have varied based on the mission parameters, but they include the likes of Ka-Zar, Wasp, Gorilla-Man, Mockingbird, Doctor Nemesis, Roz Solomon, and more.
In terms of the MCU, creating the Agents of Wakanda makes perfect sense. In the closing moments of Black Panther, T’Challa properly introduced the secretive and technologically advanced Wakanda to the rest of the world, but we’ve yet to see the repercussions of that thanks to Thanos and his annoying fetish for bejewelled handwear. However, I’m certain that come Black Panther 2, that we will find a whole lot of baddies who have set their sights on Wakanda’s vibranium technology and somebody needs to keep them in check.
On top of that, SHIELD is basically already no more following its own Hydra infiltration and ex-director Nick Fury seemingly heading into outer space for Captain Marvel 2, while the Avengers are also now in a rebuilding phase following the loss of both Iron Man and Captain America during the events of Avengers: Endgame. So yes, an Agents of Wakanda covert support team led by fan-favourite Okoye will definitely come in handy right now.
Well, at least that’s my theory for now. I mean The Walking Dead is also coming to an end soon so Okoye actress Danai Gurira is going to be looking for a new gig on TV and having her headline a Disney+ show would be awesome. We’ll probably have to wait for Black Panther 2 to release on 8 July 2022 to get our first clues though.
Last Updated: February 2, 2021