Black Panther: Wakanda Forever star Lupita Nyong’o responds to the recast T’Challa movement that began after Chadwick Boseman’s death.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever star Lupita Nyong’o responds to the rearranged T’Challa move. Nyong’o’s Nakia is one of many Black Panther characters returning in the upcoming sequel, along with Shuri (Letitia Wright), Okoye (Danai Gurira), M’Baku (Winston Duke), and Ramonda (Angela Bassett). In the first Black Panther film, Nakia is introduced as a member of the War Dogs from the River Tribe, in addition to having a love interest for T’Challa.
Shortly after Chadwick Boseman tragically passed away from colon cancer in 2020, Kevin Feige announced that Marvel Studios would not be recasting T’Challa out of respect for the actor’s legacy. As Black Panther: Wakanda Forever‘s trailers have revealed, T’Challa has passed away in the MCU and Wakanda is mourning the loss of their king. The sequel also introduces T’Challa’s successor as the next Black Panther, with the most likely candidate being his younger sister, Shuri. However, there is a vocal faction of the fanbase that would rather recast T’Challa’s character and see it appear in future films, as they think it would better honor Boseman’s legacy.
During a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Nyong’o responded to the growing recast T’Challa movement. The Wakanda forever star supports Marvel’s decision not to recast the character, pointing out that while the sequel will put T’Challa to rest, it won’t be the end of the Black Panther. Read what Nyong’o said below:
That’s not the death of the Black Panther, that’s the whole point. It is resting [T’Challa] and allowing real life to inform the story of the movies. I know there are all kinds of reasons why people want him recast, but I don’t have the patience. I don’t have the presence of mind, or I don’t have the objectivity to contradict it. Not me. I am very biased.
Why it’s best the MCU doesn’t rearrange T’Challa
Nyong’o’s comments eloquently explain why it’s best that the MCU not rearrange T’Challa. Director Ryan Coogler and his co-writer Joe Robert Cole have created a sequel that will effectively pacify T’Challa and hopefully pay tribute to his incredible legacy that Boseman helped build. In a case of art imitating life, the people of Wakanda will mourn the loss of their king while the public is still processing Boseman’s death. The sequel will also honor Boseman’s T’Challa by giving the Black Panther mantle to Shuri, or by having multiple characters don the suit and continue his legacy.
Rather, the MCU recasting T’Challa would send the message that Boseman is expendable and that another actor can fill his shoes. While Marvel made the right decision not to recast T’Challa, it’s important that they apply the same principles across the board. Reports indicate Harrison Ford is taking over Thunderbolt Ross’ role in the MCU for William Hurt, a decision likely to fan the flames of the recast T’Challa movement. Meanwhile, Marvel and everyone involved with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever seem steadfast in retiring from the role of T’Challa out of respect for Boseman.
Next: New Wakanda Forever Trailer Makes Shuri More Likely As The New Black Panther