Black Panther Early Concept Art Reveals A Minimalist Costume

Early concept art for Black Panther offers a look at a more streamlined version of T'Challa's suit. Starring Chadwick Boseman as the titular character, Marvel's latest critical and box office hit boasts a cast of largely Black actors. Set in the fictional African nation of Wakanda, the film directed by Ryan Coogler brilliantly marries political and familial story beats with the usual superhero tropes.

With Black Panther now a few weeks out, folks behind the film have been opening up on the process of creating the film. The design elements in the film, from massive set pieces set in Wakanda, to the characters' costumes, everything was given ample thought and attention. However, one of the most important costumes that Marvel Studios worked on was the final design of the Black Panther suit considering that it will be associated with the superhero moving forward. So far we've seen several iterations of the suit illustrating how particular Marvel Studios had been in bringing their newest superhero to life.

RELATED: Black Panther Becomes Third Highest-Grossing MCU Release

Shared by concept artist Jerad S. Marantz on his official Instagram account, the illustrations give us some alternatives to the final suit we saw in Black Panther. The creator briefly worked on the film under the tutelage of Marvel Studios Head of Visual Development Ryan Meinerding. While the half mask looked nifty, it would've been too similar to Batman's (Marantz also worked on some concept pieces for the Caped Crusader's suit in Justice League) - something Coogler didn't want, which is also why he passed on giving him a cape. Check out the images below:

The early concept art looks slick and more streamlined, which would've bode well with T'Challa's mentality of blending in. However, for some reason, the lesser details make this version of the suit more prominent, with the various color grading, change in texture and eye-grabbing material. The necklace, which was supposed to be worn daily, is a bit clunky for normal use. The final suit, despite it being more detailed, was very subtle, with several small features that weren't easily noticeable. As the artist said, this was mainly to see what they could've done using fabric alone, perhaps this iteration could work as an alternative tactical suit, sans the necklace.

It's unclear if we'll see different versions of the Black Panther suit moving forward, similar to how Tony Stark tweaked and upgraded his Iron Man suit over the years. With Shuri relentless in pushing the boundaries when it comes to the tech of the costume, it's definitely a possibility. However, given the historical and familial elements tied to T'Challa's suit, creating a new one for every film could undermine its importance, especially if there are a dozen more versions lying around that anyone can pick up and put on.

MORE: We Break Down Black Panther’s Oscars 2019 Chances

Source: Jerad S. Marantz/Instagram 1, 2, 3

Key Release Dates
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
  • The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
  • Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
  • Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
  • Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
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