Letitia Wright coyly responds to questions asking whether her character, Shuri, will become the next Black Panther in the upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
The much-awaited MCU project is a sequel to the 2018 Black Panther film directed by Ryan Coogler, who will also be directing the sequel. The film will be one of the last projects in Phase 4 of the MCU.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will focus on the story of Wakanda’s struggles against various world powers as the nation mourns the loss of King T’Challa. T’Challa aka Black Panther, played by Chadwick Boseman, was first introduced in Captain America: Civil War. The actor passed away in 2020 after a battle with cancer.
Wright’s character, Shuri, has played a significant role in the events of the first Black Panther film, along with some other MCU films, such as Avengers: Infinity War. Apart from Shuri, Wakanda Forever will also mark the return of various other characters, such as Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Okoye (Danai Gurira), Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o), and M’Baku (Winston Duke).
The trailer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever confirmed that King T’Challa has passed away and a new Black Panther has taken his place. Thus, many have been wondering if Shuri could be the one to take up Black Panther’s mantle.
In a recent interview with Empire, Wright addressed the discussion about Shuri being the next Black Panther. The actor revealed that the idea of Shuri becoming the next Black Panther was something she discussed with Coogler and Boseman during the making of the first Black Panther film.
Naturally, Wright does not provide a definite answer, but she does mention that the idea of playing Black Panther was “something that [she] really looked forward to.” Check out her statement below –
“That’s a tricky question to answer. I had a chat about it with Ryan and Chad when we were making Black Panther, and we touched on it briefly. When I realized I was playing Shuri, it was something that I really looked forward to.”
In Marvel Comics, Shuri does eventually become the next Black Panther. Shuri’s comic book origins, along with the brief look at the new Black Panther at the end of the Wakanda Forever trailer, have led us to believe that it will be Shuri who would eventually take up the mantle.
However, the MCU has deviated from their comic book source material on various occasions, so it won’t be a surprise if someone else takes Shuri’s place in the movies. Either Nyong’o’s Nakia or Gurira’s Okoye could also become the next Black Panther, given that they’ve also proven their abilities in the past.
Another fan theory suggests that it isn’t just one character who becomes the new hero, but a responsibility that various citizens of Wakanda decide to share. We have to wait for the film to hit theaters before we find out who finally takes up the mantle.
Thankfully, the wait will not be too long. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will release in theaters on November 11, 2022.
About Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is an upcoming American superhero film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It will serve as the sequel to Black Panther (2018) and will be the 30th film in the MCU. The film is being written and directed by Ryan Coogler.
Wakanda grieves the loss of their King T’Challa as the nation deals with opening up their technology to the world. But apart from the diplomatic agencies’ onslaught, Wakanda must face yet another danger as the king of Talcon, an underwater nation like DC’s Atlantis, Namor, has declared war on Wakanda.
Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, and Angela Bassett will star in the film, which will premiere on November 11, 2022.