If you are a fan of Marvel films, it’s officially time to get excited once again. This year we are getting Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 and Thor: Ragnarok, while it will be followed up next year with an even bigger slate, with Avengers: Infinity War and the introduction of Black Panther.
Cameras officially began rolling earlier this week in Georgia for Black Panther. Audiences were first introduced to T’Challa during the events of Captain America: Civil War and he almost stole the show – if it wasn’t for that pesky Spider-Man. The hero’s full story will be explored with an impressive cast led by Chadwick Boseman (Get On Up), Michael B. Jordan (Creed), and Lupita Nyong’o (Queen of Katwe), and directed by Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station, Creed).
Every Marvel movie has a sub-genre and Black Panther is being positioned as Marvel’s James Bond movie. Now that we have the official synopsis, the film is coming into a clearer light. The “old enemy [that] reappears on the radar” is more than likely Erik Killmonger, who will be played by Jordan. In the comics, Killmonger and T’Challa grew up knowing each other, in some iterations they even went to college together in the U.S. It has been uncovered that there will be scenes of T’Challa that take place at St. Mary’s College in the Bay Area, so it’s possible that the comic history will be adapted.
The synopsis also confirms for the first time officially that Andy Serkis (War for the Planet of the Apes) will return as Ulysses Klaue, aka Klaw. We last saw the character in Avengers: Age of Ultron getting his arm chopped off. However, his comic backstory is intertwined with Black Panther, his family, and vibranium, so it would seem to be a necessity to include him as a wild card in the plot, or more. This is also an opportunity to see Serkis in his own skin, after the motion capture master spent the past few years as Caesar the ape and Supreme Leader Snoke, in Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Sometimes, the most important things are in the details. It’s encouraging to see that Coogler has brought along key members of his production staff from Creed and Fruitvale Station, including his production designer and editor. Hopefully, this is an indication that Coogler’s vision and perspective will bleed through the superhero formula. Check out the official press release and synopsis.
Official Press Statement:
MARVEL STUDIOS BEGINS PRODUCTION ON “BLACK PANTHER”
Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker and Andy Serkis Star in the Newest Chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe
BURBANK, CALIF. (January 26, 2017)—Marvel Studios announced today that production has begun on “Black Panther,” starring Chadwick Boseman (“Captain America: Civil War,” “Get on Up”), Michael B. Jordan (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”), Academy Award® winner Lupita Nyong’o (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “12 Years a Slave”), Danai Gurira (“The Walking Dead,” upcoming “All Eyez on Me”), Martin Freeman (“Hobbit” trilogy, “Sherlock”), Daniel Kaluuya (upcoming “Get Out,” “Sicario”), with Academy Award® nominee Angela Bassett (“American Horror Story,” “London Has Fallen”), with Academy Award® winner Forest Whitaker (“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” Lee Daniels’ “The Butler”), and Andy Serkis (“Avengers: Age of Ultron,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”).
Additional cast members include Letitia Wright (“Urban Hymn,” “Glasgow Girls”), Winston Duke (“Person of Interest, “Modern Family”), Florence Kasumba (“Captain America: Civil War,” “Emerald City”), Sterling K. Brown (“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”) and John Kani (“Captain America: Civil War,” “Coriolanus”).
Ryan Coogler (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”) directs Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” from a screenplay he co-wrote with Joe Robert Cole (“The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”). The film, which opens in U.S. theaters on February 16, 2018, will be shot in Atlanta and South Korea.
“Black Panther” follows T’Challa who, after the events of “Captain America: Civil War,” returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda to take his place as King. However, when an old enemy reappears on the radar, T’Challa’s mettle as King and Black Panther is tested when he is drawn into a conflict that puts the entire fate of Wakanda and the world at risk.
Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” is produced by Kevin Feige with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Nate Moore, Jeffrey Chernov and Stan Lee serving as executive producers.
Coogler’s creative brain trust includes his frequent collaborators: director of photography Rachel Morrison, A.S.C. (“Dope,” “Fruitvale Station”), production designer Hannah Beachler (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”), editors Claudia Castello (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”) and Michael P. Shawver (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”); along with costume designer Ruth E. Carter (“Selma,” Lee Daniels’ “The Butler”), visuals effects supervisor Geoffrey Baumann (“Doctor Strange,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron”), Academy Award®- winning makeup designer Joel Harlow (“Star Trek Beyond,” “Black Mass”) and seven-time Academy Award® nominee, special effects supervisor Dan Sudick (“Captain America: Civil War,” “Marvel’s The Avengers”).
Based on the Marvel comic character that first appeared in “Fantastic Four Vol. 1” Issue 52, published in 1966, “Black Panther” joins Marvel Studios’ slate of releases in its Phase 3 commitment to introduce film audiences to new heroes and continue the adventures of fan favorites over the course of four years and nine films.
In 2016, Marvel Studios continued its unprecedented success with the release of “Captain America: Civil War,” which opened on May 6 with the fifth largest opening weekend of all time and has since garnered box office receipts of over $1.1 billion worldwide.
The juggernaut studio ended the year with its newest Super Hero “Doctor Strange,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Rachel McAdams. The film opened #1 at the box office on November 4 and went on to gross more than $659 million worldwide to date. The two films propelled Marvel Studios’ #1 domestic box-office opening streak to a record-breaking 14 consecutive films.
Black Panther opens on February 16th, 2018.