Chadwick Boseman’s death last August hit everyone hard, with his countless fans across the globe still in mourning for the phenomenally talented actor. As you’d expect, his unexpected passing caused Marvel Studios to initially pump the breaks on Black Panther 2, but they’ve since reworked their plans for the sequel and will move ahead with it. However, Kevin Feige has confirmed that King T’Challa will not be recast and the film will instead focus on the many other characters of the Black Panther mythos. But it seems not all fans agree with this solution.
When Feige announced that Boseman wouldn’t be replaced, many Marvel lovers were happy with that decision as they couldn’t imagine anyone else playing the part in his wake. However, a lot of other people have a different opinion. In fact, a Change.org petition has been launched which calls for Marvel to actually go ahead and recast the Wakandan monarch. At the time of writing, it’s amassed over 2100 signatures, meaning there’s a pretty sizeable amount of people backing this idea.
The petition is calling for the character of T’Challa to continue on in the MCU as a way to honor Boseman and his legacy. As per the description attached to it, its organizers feel that Black Panther is too important to the franchise and the many he’s inspired the world over and it would be doing a disservice to Boseman if the hero was to be retired following his death.
Here’s how they put it:
“As the first Black superhero in mainstream comics and the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), T’Challa is literally Black history. He was created in 1966, during the Civil Rights era, to be the embodiment of positive Black representation. His character was also instrumental in uplifting Black female characters such as Storm, the Dora Milaje, and his own sister Shuri. There is no more positive form of representation in Black culture than strong Black men and women supporting one another. T’Challa’s character was only scratching the surface with his story in the MCU, and there is so much more left to tell.”
This petition raises some good points, but it’s unlikely that Marvel would alter their plans again at this stage. By the sounds of it, the new storyline for Black Panther 2 will see various characters battling to both claim the throne and the mantle of Wakandan protector. Maybe even a resurrected Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). Whatever happens, Nakia actress Lupita Nyong’o has promised that director Ryan Coogler will honor Boseman in the follow-up.
Black Panther 2 is scheduled to start shooting this summer ahead of its arrival in July 2022.