The highly anticipated Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is just a matter of weeks away from hitting cinemas, but there are still a lot of questions surrounding the Marvel movie. Who is the new antagonist Namor, and why is he hellbent on destroying Wakanda? How did T’Challa die? And who will take up the mantle of the protector of the realm, the Black Panther?
On that last point, fans have been theorising that a number of known major heroes could be in line to take over as the vibranium-clad warrior, including Nakia, Okoye, and even rival warrior M’Baku. But no one has a better pedigree than Shuri.
Shuri is T’Challa’s younger sister and the head scientist in Wakanda. She has already lent a hand to various fights for the universe in Avengers Infinity War and Avengers Endgame in recent years, so she’s no stranger to action.
The actor behind the young scientist, Letitia Wright, has recently opened up about continuing the Black Panther legacy without Chadwick Boseman.
The American star died on August 28, 2020, after suffering from colon cancer. His death in the Marvel universe has not been addressed by Disney yet, but it is surely going to be the main focal point of the upcoming movie.
Wright was recently quizzed over who would be taking over from T’Challa, and if it would be her character. She replied: “That’s a tricky question to answer.”
She did, however, add that it is a topic she previously discussed with Boseman before his death.
Wright revealed: “I had a chat about it with Ryan and Chad when we were making Black Panther, and we touched on it briefly.”
This chat is no surprise considering that, in the Marvel comic books, Shuri did eventually become the next version of the Black Panther. The iconic moment came after the nemesis of the Fantastic Four, Doctor Doom, almost killed T’Challa, sending him into a coma and leaving Wakanda unprotected.
With no choice left on the table, Shuri took on the Black Panther mantle and saved the day.
Wright confessed: “When I realised I was playing Shuri, it was something that I really looked forward to.” (Via Empire)
Feige was quizzed by Empire over replacing Boseman just 18 months after the actor’s death. He said: “It just felt like it was much too soon to recast.”
Looking back on the Marvel creator, Stan Lee, he mused: “[He] always said that Marvel represents the world outside your window. And we had talked about how, as extraordinary and fantastical as our characters and stories are, there’s a relatable and human element to everything we do.”
Feige added: “The world is still processing the loss of Chad. And Ryan poured that into the story.”
Feige also said they had conversations behind closed doors where they asked one another: “What do we do next?”
The legacy of Boseman was at the forefront of their mind throughout Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’s production. And it will no doubt spill into other parts of the MCU going forward.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever hits cinemas on November 11.