Last year, Black Panther was a cultural landmark. It became the ninth highest grossing movie of all time, it was named one of the Top 10 Films of 2018 by both the AFI and the National Board of Review, it was the first ever comic book movie to receive an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture.
So, it wasn’t long before Marvel Studios announced plans to make a sequel to the movie. Between the original and the sequel, Wakanda has been rocked by the destructive reign of Thanos, but they’ve ultimately pulled through and they’re stronger than ever following the Battle of Earth. So, here's everything we know (so far) about Black Panther 2.
10 Ryan Coogler Is Returning To Write And Direct The Sequel
Ryan Coogler, the director of the first Black Panther movie, has been signed on to write and direct the sequel. So far, Coogler has an unwavering hit rate. He kicked off his directing career with the powerful Black Lives Matter drama Fruitvale Station, about the final day in the life of Oscar Grant, who was killed in 2009 by a white police officer.
He followed that Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner up with the Rocky reboot Creed, which put a fresh spin on the original’s well-worn formula and spawned a new franchise. Then, he directed the first superhero movie to ever be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture for the MCU.
9 We’ll See T’Challa Grow As A King
In the comics, T’Challa becomes the King of Wakanda as a child, so he’s used to ruling his country. However, in the MCU, the character only just recently took up the throne following the death of his father, so these two versions of the character are apples and oranges in terms of their development as a monarch.
In the sequel, Ryan Coogler hopes to explore how T’Challa grows as a king: “In our film that character is just settling in. So, I’d be really interested to see, you know, what kind of king he is with experience and how that affects his performance in the stories.”
8 Letitia Wright Will Be Back As Shuri
Letitia Wright has signed on to return as T’Challa’s younger sister Shuri in Black Panther 2, which is unsurprising, since she quickly became a fan favorite following her debut in the original. Chadwick Boseman is also confirmed to return to the role of T’Challa, but that one was kind of a no-brainer, since his character’s superhero alter ego is literally in the title.
7 Black Panther 2 Will Probably Be Released In 2021
While Marvel Studios doesn’t plan to officially announce its Phase 4 release slate until later this summer, it has scheduled a number of undisclosed film releases over the next few years. One of those releases is February 12, 2021, and while it hasn’t been confirmed what this movie is, it’s more than likely that it’s Black Panther 2.
The first Black Panther movie was released in the February window, and studios like to keep the timeframe of their franchise releases the same, because for whatever reason, it’s good for marketing. It’s why Disney only releases Star Wars movies in December (and why the one they released in the summer was the only Star Wars movie to bomb).
6 Killmonger Might Not Return, Despite The Rumors
In the past few weeks, there have been rumors that Killmonger could return in the Black Panther sequel, despite his supposed death at the end of the original film. Some fans felt that he didn’t deserve to die at the end of the first movie and his motivations were justified.
However, producer Kevin Feige said recently that this is just “pure rumor and speculation, because Mr. [Ryan] Coogler is just only, in recent weeks, sitting down at his keyboard and beginning to outline the movie...and will share it with [Black Panther producer] Nate Moore and myself in coming weeks.” So, Killmonger’s return hasn’t been confirmed, but the rumors haven’t been shut down either.
5 Killmonger Might Return.. But Not How You'd Think
MCU actors tend to get coy when you ask them about upcoming stuff, because their contracts with the studio prohibit them from giving anything away – but apparently, their spouses have no such issues. Recently, when Angela Bassett was asked if all the Black Panther cast members would be returning for the sequel, she said, “I would assume so.”
But then her husband, actor Courtney B. Vance, jumped in and said, “Yes, just go ahead and say it, yes. Everyone will be there. Just yes, yes...Including Michael B. [Jordan], yes.” The most recent rumors have suggested that Killmonger won’t return in the living world, but will instead appear in Wakanda’s “spiritual plane.”
4 Black Panther 2’s Villain Shortlist Is Down To Two Choices
Reports are claiming that the search for Black Panther 2’s villain has been narrowed down to two options. The first option is Namor, who has a long-standing rivalry with T’Challa in the comics and whose MCU debut has been teased since way back in 2010 – most recently in Avengers: Endgame, when Okoye mentioned an earthquake off the coast of Wakanda, hinting at Atlantis’ existence.
The second option is Princess Zanda, the ruler of Wakanda’s neighboring nation Narobia who collects mystical artifacts and flies into a jealous fury when T’Challa announces his engagement to Storm (who might also be coming to the MCU following the Fox/Disney merger).
3 Kevin Feige Has A “Pretty Solid Direction” For The Sequel's Story
Producer Kevin Feige has said that in discussions with the other brass at Marvel, they’ve figured out where the Black Panther sequel is going to go: “Nothing specific to reveal, other than to say we absolutely will do that.
One of the favorite pastimes at Marvel Studios is sitting around on a part one and talking and dreaming about what we would do in a part two. There have been plenty of those conversations as we were putting together the first Black Panther. We have ideas and a pretty solid direction on where we want to head with the second one.”
2 Nick Fury might appear in Black Panther 2
Samuel L. Jackson has said that he’s very eager for Nick Fury and T’Challa to meet on-screen, which has yet to happen. Jackson has said that he asked Marvel to include Fury in the casino scene in the first Black Panther movie, but they decided not to. However, they did promise that the two characters would meet at some stage in the future.
According to Jackson, “It was just like, ‘Ehh, nah. We’re good. Nick Fury and Black Panther will meet somewhere. But not there.’” With Wakanda opening itself up to the wider world at the end of the first movie, maybe Nick Fury will be the ambassador that the U.S. government sends over there to forge a connection between the two nations.
1 There will probably be a bunch more sequels after Black Panther 2
Chadwick Boseman was only signed on for five movies and he’s already done four of them, but thanks to the record-shattering $1.3 billion gross of the first movie and the overwhelming public response to it, Marvel will probably want to keep him around for a while. When Kevin Feige was asked how many Black Panther movies there would be, he coyly said, “We always say we work on one movie at a time. If you have any good ideas, put it in the movie you’re making.
If you don’t, you might not be able to make another one. That said, [Black] Panther has been around for more than half a century in the comic books and there are many, many stories to tell.”