Following the tragic and surprising death of Chadwick Boseman last August, many fans wondered what would happen to the upcoming Black Panther 2. The actor’s four year battle with colon cancer had been kept a closely guarded secret and came as a surprise to Marvel Studios as well as cast and crew members of Black Panther.
Despite Boseman’s death, Marvel Studios are continuing to press on with the release of next year’s sequel. Production is due to begin in a few months, and Marvel Studios recently announced that the Black Panther franchise will expand further, with a new Disney+ series based on Wakanda.
In December, Kevin Feige officially confirmed that the role of T’Challa will not be recast. The Marvel Studios President said at the time that Boseman’s “portrayal of T’Challa the Black Panther is iconic and transcends iteration of the character in any other medium from Marvel’s past.” The Falcon and the Winter Soldier star, Anthony Mackie recently discussed Boseman’s portrayal of T’challa and said “there’s nobody that could bring the grace to that role that he did“.
Without the franchise’s leading character, Marvel will instead explore the characters and setting of the film, whilst also attempting to honour Boseman’s legacy. Writer and Director, Ryan Coogler, was already writing the script for the film when Boseman died and wrote a heartfelt tribute to the star.
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that he was unaware of Chadwick Boseman’s illness. “I didn’t know what was going on,” said Coogler. “I knew what he wanted me to know.”
The director went on to express his sadness that he will never have the chance to work with Boseman again, but also expressed he gratitude at the time spent with the actor.
Coogler believes that Boseman wouldn’t have wanted them to stop, despite it being “difficult”, because he was “so about the collective.”
Coogler also spoke about Boseman’s impact on the cast and crew members of Black Panther, despite the fact he was fighting his private battle with cancer during filming.
Lastly, Coogler stated that “it would be harder for me to stop” production on the sequel that to carry on:
Black Panther 2 is currently scheduled to release on July 8th, 2022.