The loss of Chadwick Boseman is going to be felt for a long time to come after the actor responsible for headlining one of the most important blockbusters of the 21st Century lost a four-year battle to colon cancer that even his closest collaborators didn’t know he was fighting. The fact that he made seven movies while dealing with the illness that would ultimately take his life is a testament to his incredible drive and work ethic, and Boseman was even planning to start training for his return as Black Panther this month.
The 43 year-old’s tragic passing plunged the industry into a state of shock, and tributes poured in from all over the world, with some of the most poignant ones coming from Marvel Cinematic Universe co-stars Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o and Letitia Wright. They would have been expecting to reunite with Boseman early next year when Black Panther II started shooting in order to meet a May 2022 release date, but now there’s every chance that the sequel could end up being delayed out of respect.
We recently learned that Disney and Marvel were still planning on moving forward with the pic, and are looking to create an enduring monument to Boseman’s iconic performance as T’Challa while building on the lasting cultural effect of the first installment. There’s no way the studio would even dare think about recasting the title hero, though, meaning that the long-term plans will need to be accelerated.
Fans have already made it clear that nobody else apart from Shuri should inherit the mantle, and trusted industry insider Daniel Richtman has now indicated that this is the direction that Black Panther II is likely headed in, as you can see below.
Yeah there's no way they're going to recast the role. It's gonna be Shuri https://t.co/f8lRAujJu7
— Daniel Richtman #BlackLivesMatter (@DanielRPK) September 10, 2020
Of course, returning to the world of Black Panther without Chadwick Boseman will be difficult for the cast, crew and audiences alike, but the franchise is massively important to millions of people, and could serve as a fitting tribute to the legacy of the King.