When I heard that Disney was doing a movie called Black Panthers, I was intrigued. I automatically thought they were doing a movie on the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense founded by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale in Oakland, Ca (1966).
The Panthers practiced militant self-defense of minority communities against the U.S. government, and fought to establish revolutionary socialism through mass organizing and community based programs.
I was totally off. Which means I need to up my Marvel Comics Game immediately.
The Black Panther movie is about a Marvel Character who was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. The Black Panther, also knows as T’Challa and is the protector of Wakanda, a superhero and member of the Avengers. He dresses as a Black Panther when he needs to fight crime.
Black Panther takes place after the civil war. T’Challa whose father was king, was killed and he travels to the US to handle business. When he returns home as the new king of Wakanda but finds his position challenged by a long-time adversary in a conflict that has universal consequences.
So yeah, I was totally wrong!
What makes this Marvel movie different and history in the making, is that it’s the first superhero movie for Marvel with an all African American cast and director, Ryan Coogler.
The all-star cast includes:
- Chadwick Boseman – plays the king of the fictional African nation Wakanda.
- Michael B. Jordan – A Wakandan exile who seeks to overthrow T’Challa.
- Lupita Nyong’o – T’Challa’s former lover and an undercover operative of the Dora Milaje, the all-female special forces of Wakanda who serve as T’Challa’s bodyguards
- Danai Gurira – An “extremely proud” Wakandan and traditionalist from the Border Tribe, who is the head of the Dora Milaje
- Martin Freeman – An “extremely proud” Wakandan and traditionalist from the Border Tribe, who is the head of the Dora Milaje
- Daniel Kaluuya – A confidant to T’Challa and his best friend, who is the head of security for the Border Tribe, serving as the first line of defense for Wakanda.
- Angela Bassett – plays Ramonda, T’Challa’s mother. Boseman noted that Ramonda “is one of the advisors that [T’Challa] would look to… for some of the answers of what his father might want or might do.
- Forest Whitaker – plays Zuri, An elder statesman in Wakanda, and the keeper of the Heart-Shaped Herb.
- Andy Serkis – plays Ulysses Klaue, A black-market arms dealer, smuggler and gangster working out of South Africa. Source
When Chadwick Bosemen interviewed with CBR, he wanted us to know what to expect in 2018’s Black Panther. He was asked how does it feel to be in a major film which features a black cast, writers, and director:
“I feel the energy. The image itself opens people’s minds up. You can talk about it all you want, you can have it in a comic book, you can even do an animated series, but when you see real people doing it, it changes something inside of you. It’s going to be a big deal because there’s not just Black people or people of African descent that want to see it, I think everybody wants to see it. That’s the beautiful thing. I truly believe there are more people who want to see it than don’t want to see it, especially after being here.”
Marvel is known for The Avengers, Iron Man, and Guardians of the Galaxy all being major films. However, many will argue that Black Panther is the most important movie to date. One things that’s different in Black Panthers is the audience will see this character in a whole new global city for the majority of the film.
Black Panther is set in Wakanda, Africa, it’s a fictional city that is wealthy with natural treasures that outsiders now want a peace of. We will see him work out a different set of problems among his people without partnering up with other super heros.
There are a few more tidbits I will share as we get closer to the movie, Feb 18, 2016 (Black History Month).
Do you plan to go see it? I can’t wait!