Two years ago, something wonderful happen. Marvel announced that not only will Black Panther, played by Chadwick Boseman (Get on Up), appear in Captain America: Civil War, but he'll also star in his own standalone film. To quote another Marvel character, "It's about damn time." I've been waiting for a Black Panther movie since the first Avengers movie, but prior to that, I've been longing for a superhero or fantasy film with an all Black cast since middle school. That ponderation came after watching Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. My class took a field trip to the movies to see this. Mind you, this was my first time seeing a Lord of the Rings movie. The movie of course was fantastic and instantly made me a fan of both J.R.R. Tolkien and Peter Jackson, but one thing I realized after watching is that people of color were absent. Granted, I have had this argument with fellow fans and I understand that this takes place in fictional Middle-Earth, but does that mean Blacks don't exist?
To clarify, I do NOT have a racist bone in my body. If I did, I surely wouldn't have seen a majority of the movies I've seen, but I'm simply stating that it would be nice to see a Black film at the same caliber as Lord of the Rings or Star Wars. Kevin Feige, producer of Marvel Studios, stated that, "Black Panther will consist of 90% of an African-American cast." Music to my ears. On top of that, the film will be directed by fellow Bay Area native, Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station, Creed).
As a film buff and aspiring filmmaker myself, I hate seeing Black actors as slaves, butlers, maids, tokens and sidekicks in major motion pictures. To me it says, "Hey, that's how we see Black people."
I was introduced to Black Panther's comics while attending school in Orlando, by A Comic Shop's owner, Aaron Haaland. The twist? A white man introduced me to a Black superhero's book. I knew that Black Panther existed before I read his comics, because of a little game called Marvel Ultimate Alliance.
The cool thing about T'Challa is that he is a king of a fictional African nation of Wakanda and he is intelligent. After some heavy reading, I became a fan in a heartbeat. One could say that I'm an expert on all things Wakanda. I put together five things that I would love to see in the film.
As I mentioned earlier, T'Challa is the ruler of a fictional African nation, but Wakanda is so rich in history, that it needs more exploration. In terms of beauty, think of it as the African version of Thor's Asgard, minus the rainbow bridge. Wakanda is also home to a substance that made Captain America's shield: vibranium. Aside from vibranium, Wakanda is the most advanced nation in all of the world, or at least in the Marvel universe.
It was announced that Lupita N'Yongo and Danai Gurrira will play T'Challa's bodyguards, the Dora Milaje. Although it is cool to see women kicking ass, I'm curious as to whether T'Shuri, T'Challa's sister, will be in the film, let alone in the MCU.
Despite the fact that I didn't find much enjoyment with Shuri taking over the Black Panther mantle while T'Challa was injured, she was still a badass.
No, I'm not talking about the great Stan Lee making an appearance, although that's mandatory, but I'm talking about a cameo from another Marvel hero. Perhaps, Captain America or Falcon could drop by. After all, Black Panther did make Falcon a pair of wings in the comics and after Civil War, the government confiscated his wings and also seeing as though Cap's shield is made of vibranium, you can only get vibranium in Wakanda. Plus, Cap was in Wakanda during the mid-credits scene of Civil War. My goodness, the possibilities are endless, but don't let the cameos be that much of a distraction. The best example would be Falcon's small scene in Ant-Man. If they could do something in vein of that, then all is right in Wakanda.
I love the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but one thing that they lack that the DC films are supreme in is the fact that they have worthy opponents to the heroes. One could argue Loki, but after Thor: The Dark World, Loki became more of an antihero. Ultron lost his menacing ability after every joke he told and Ronan the Accuser was just a throw away character. That's not to say that I can't wait for Thanos to whoop some ass in Avengers: Infinity War, though.
Far as Black Panther's villains go, we were introduced to one in Age of Ultron, by the name of Ulysses Klaw, played by Andy Serkis. He is one of Black Panther's main villains, along with Man-Ape and Killmonger, who will be played by frequent Ryan Coogler collaborator Michael B. Jordan (Creed, Fruitvale Station). With Killmonger, he's more of a rival than a villain to T'Challa like Steph Curry to LeBron James.
Rumors are swirling that Killmonger and Klaw are teaming up along with Malice. Hopefully, Andy Serkis will get to don his famous motion capture suit to bring Klaw's mutated sound being form to life. The look that comic fans are familiar with.
With Ryan Coogler at the helm and Joe Robert Cole assisting him with the writing, there's no doubt that this movie will be both character and story driven, but Joss Whedon, a brilliant filmmaker, wrote and directed Age of Ultron and we all know how that turned out. Same could be said for Iron Man 3. Coogler knows how to bring the best out of his character's performances. Yes, I cried watching Fruitvale Station.
What are some things that you expect to see in Black Panther?