The script for the anticipated sequel to the hit MCU superhero film, Black Panther, is still undergoing changes, even though the feature began shooting last month in Atlanta. Angela Bassett revealed the on-going revisions to the upcoming drama during an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight.
“I don’t know what it’s going to look like at all,” Bassett admitted during the interview as she discussed the follow-up, which is titled Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. “There have been about five incarnations of the script and I hear another one’s coming.”
The second entry in the Black Panther series has been undergoing adjustments since the death of its Academy Award-nominated lead actor, Chadwick Boseman, from colon cancer last August. In the wake of his passing, Marvel Studios had to overhaul its plans for the second installment, shared the Oscar-nominated actress, who’s set to reprise her role of the queen mother of Boseman’s King T’Challa in the sequel.
“Of course, with our dear king [Boseman] going on to glory, a lot of things had to be shifted and changed,” Bassett added. “So, thankfully, [director] Ryan [Coogler] and [writer] Joe Robert Cole [are] just such masterful storytellers that they’ve found a way into this world. Hopefully it will be satisfying…for the fans and it will be honorable of our Chad. We love our king.”
The sequel has been in development since right after the Academy Award-winning Black Panther was released in theaters in 2018. After Boseman’s death last summer, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige announced the company would not recast the role of T’Challa or digitally recreate the actor, and that the follow-up would honor Boseman’s legacy.
As production started on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever at Atlanta’s Pinewood Studios, Feige released a statement, saying, “It’s clearly very emotional without Chad. But everyone is also very excited to bring the world of Wakanda back to the fans. We’re going to do it in a way that would make Chad proud.”
Marvel Studios has not yet released any plot details about the second entry in the Black Panther series. However, it’s expected that much of the cast from the original movie, including Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira, will return for the upcoming second installment. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently scheduled to be released in theaters on July 8, 2022, and will be accompanied by an untitled Wakanda series for Disney+.
The news of the script revisions for Black Panther‘s follow-up comes as the franchise’s upcoming comic book series by John Ridley and Juann Cabal has been delayed by Marvel Comics. The publisher has informed retailers that the monthly series, which was originally planned to premiere on August 4, has now been postponed to November 3. The second issue will now debut on December 1.
Marvel Comics hasn’t disclosed the reason for the publishing delays of the new comic series. But the setback comes after the previous volume of the Black Panther comic also had routine scheduling issues.
Originally announced by the New York Times, Ridley and Cabal’s Black Panther comic book series is marketed as a revolutionary new take on T’Challa and the Wakandan kingdom. The duo noted that the new take will “upend everything… and have ramifications for the entire Marvel Universe!”
The description of the upcoming first comic book noted that “Secrets from T’Challa’s past have come back to haunt him. Fresh from returning from his travels in space, Black Panther receives an unexpected and urgent message from a Wakandan secret agent. Now T’Challa must race the clock not only to save his agent, but also to keep his true agenda under wraps. Because if the truth comes out, it could cost T’Challa everything…”
“We’re coming out of a summer where we saw Black people fighting for our rights, standing up, fighting in ways that we haven’t had to do in years,” Ridley added. “And it was really important to me after the year we had where we can have these conversations with Black people and we can use words like love and caring and hope and regret and all these really fundamental emotions that everybody has.”