Kevin Feige Reveals Marvel’s Reaction To Chadwick Boseman’s Passing

Chadwick Boseman

In less than a year, Marvel Cinematic Universe sequel Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will arrive in theaters, and it’s going to be a hugely emotional and bittersweet experience for audiences. As much as they can’t wait to immerse themselves back into Ryan Coogler’s corner of the mythology, there’s always going to be a tinge of sadness that Chadwick Boseman isn’t there to be part of it.

The actor’s passing last summer hit fans, colleagues, friends, family and collaborators equally hard, but you can guarantee Coogler and producer Kevin Feige will be intent to deliver a comic book epic that stands on its own merits as a worthy sequel to one of the biggest hits in the history of cinema, as well as a monolithic figure in modern blockbuster filmmaking in terms of both stature and success, while still honoring Boseman’s legacy.

In a new interview, Feige admitted that everyone struggled to come to terms with Boseman’s death, but the Marvel Studios president is firm in his belief that Coogler, his crew and the cast are on their way to creating something special.

“The death of Chad had hit all of us extremely hard, and at the same time as it hit the world, because we didn’t know either. And there were all sorts of questions, and our first thought for many weeks afterwards had nothing to do with the movie, it had to do with him and his family and his wife and his legacy. And really we were looking to Ryan Coogler for guidance, as one frankly always should about almost everything in life, I’d recommend following Ryan Coogler for guidance.

The discussions essentially came down to continuing the legacy of Wakanda and continuing with that storyline in a very meaningful, respectful, and yet still hopeful and fun and exciting way, which was difficult after losing Chad. And I will say that Ryan and our producer, Nate Moore, and the entire cast, and our co-writer Joe Robert Cole, have done some remarkable things in the story and the draft. The team is assembling once again and cameras roll in the not-too-distant future on that. And it will be extremely emotional across the board, but I think they have something very special in mind.”

Replacing the title hero in any major franchise is a notoriously difficult task, and that’s especially true for Wakanda Forever, given that the circumstances were entirely out of everyone’s hands. Boseman has left an indelible imprint on the movie industry despite his relatively short career and tragically brief life, headlining a $1.3 billion box office bonanza that became the first superhero film to ever scoop an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has some monumental footsteps to follow, then, but Coogler and Feige will be pulling out all the stops to ensure that it lives up the expectations that surround it.