Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently filming in Atlanta, but its plot remains a mystery. The obvious question is how they’re going to deal with the tragic death of Chadwick Boseman. Earlier this year, Kevin Feige shed some light on this, saying: “We’re not going to have a CG Chadwick and we’re not recasting T’Challa.”
This means the most likely route is that T’Challa will die off-screen and the Black Panther mantle will be taken up by his younger sister Shuri, as played by Letitia Wright.
Now, a new story from TMZ theorizes that Wright is being booted off the movie and replaced by Michaela Coel. The I May Destroy You star was recently announced as appearing in the film, though her role is firmly under wraps.
The reasoning behind this lies with Wright sharing a transphobic anti-vaccination video on Twitter in December 2020. When asked to apologize, Wright said she was being punished as she didn’t “conform to popular opinions” and proceeded to like tweets calling for her to be removed from the sequel and for the role to be recast.
Then (no doubt at the behest of her furious agent) her social media was scrubbed of any controversial content and soon afterward her Twitter account was deactivated completely. But Disney takes this stuff seriously, with many pointing to Gina Carano getting fired for similar behavior on social media.
Despite all this, I think it’s unlikely that Shuri will be recast. One of the aggravating factors in Carano’s case was that even after being repeatedly warned she kept saying stupid and offensive things, whereas Wright has stayed quiet ever since the incident. Anyway, if they really were going to fire her I think they’d have done so before the shoot began.
My bet is that Coel is playing an as-yet-unknown Wakandan character whose identity needs to be kept secret for plot reasons. Or, as many fan theories claim, she’s been cast as the X-Men’s Storm. Let’s hope we get some answers as the shoot continues.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will hit theaters on July 8, 2022.