Chadwick Boseman is an American actor who had become most known for his biographical film roles. He had played James Brown in Get on Up and Jackie Robinson in 42. However, everything changed over night when he was cast as T’Challa in Captain America: Civil War, which would mark the first of five Marvel films in his contract. He will be reprising the role of T’Challa in the upcoming Marvel’s Black Panther in what is the most anticipated Marvel film of the year.
Screen Rant got a chance to talk with Chadwick Boseman on press day, where we discussed how the film as well as T’Challa will impact communities, whether or not the film will inspire people moving forward, and where he’d like to see T’Challa go after the film.
Screen Rant: Chadwick, this is a brilliant film. Transcends the superhero genre, groundbreaking to me and I love seeing Black Panther on screen. Now, you’ve gotten to play some of the most iconic African-American historical figures like James Brown, Jackie Robinson, and Thurgood Marshall. Do you think that this film and this character will kind of impact communities the same way that those those figures did or some possibly even in greater ways?
Chadwick Boseman: You know what I love about what’s happening right now? Is very often we hero worship. Not just in [the] African-American community but in American society, we hero worship. We water down history by doing that, you know? But in particular, in African-American history because we have so many firsts, you know? The first Supreme Court Justice, the first person to break the color barrier, you know, on the one, the front, the creation of a musical style. You know, it’s not a bad thing that you picked these heroes and idolized them, nor is it wrong to pick a superhero and look up to them.
But what I love about this moment that’s actually different is that you have people doing stuff like the [charity fundraiser] Black Panther Challenge. You even have, you know, situations where the Boys & Girls Club gets to keep that money because Ellen [Degeneres] is going to pay pay for them to go to the movie instead and now they continue to raise money.
So what you have instead of just hero worship is you have a movement. You have people deciding that the whole group should benefit from this moment and that’s what I even see in the movie. So that idea that it’s not just one person who is supposed to uplift us all, you know? It never happened that way. It was always a group of people behind Dr. King, a group of people behind Malcolm X, and Medgar Evers, and all these leaders that we have. It’s always been that. And so the idea that a movement has started over the idea of a superhero actually makes us realize what the hero actually is, that it’s actually within all of us.
SR: Absolutely. Now, T’Challa is obviously the King of Wakanda. Where do you want to see the character go next?
Chadwick Boseman: [Chuckles] I can’t answer that. I can’t answer any ‘next’ because if I say that then it’ll be like, “The next thing that’s gonna happen is this for Marvel.”
SR: Well congratulations on the film man, it’s transcendent man, it’s so brilliant.
Chadwick Boseman: Alright, thank you.
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