T'Challa may not be the only one to suit up in Black Panther 2 and beyond. The introduction of Black Panther in Captain America: Civil War paved the way for him and his country of Wakanda to be a prominent force in the MCU moving forward. Fans instantly became fans of what Chadwick Boseman brought to the role, but director Ryan Coogler's ability to flesh out the world in Black Panther helped make it a box office juggernaut.
One of the biggest parts of Black Panther that audiences responded to was the richness of the world and these characters. T'Challa's solo film is more of an ensemble, since it gave Okoye (Danai Gurira), Shuri (Letitia Wright), Nakia (Lupita Nyong'o), M'Baku (Winston Duke), and Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) plenty of time to shine. Fans are even already waiting for the day Shuri becomes the new Black Panther, and it may not be too long before someone else other than T'Challa suits up.
Screen Rant spoke to Black Panther producer Nate Moore as part of the film's release on home video. During the interview, we asked him about the chances of seeing other versions of Black Panther on the big screen. Even though the role is still Boseman's, they aren't putting any mandates that he must be the only one to take on this mantle.
One thing I like to tell Ryan is, the Black Panther is a mantle as much as it is a person, so we're not restricted by anything, because the truth is, there's a lot of different ways to go back to Wakanda and have a good time and continue to explore the themes that made the first film so resonant.
If Marvel does decide to have some fun and give different characters the chance to be the Black Panther, they've got quite a few different options to play with. The suit is traditionally for whoever is the ruler of Wakanda and there is precedence in the comics for Shuri to become the Black Panther. Whether that happens in the immediate future or isn't until Black Panther 5, Shuri seems like the best bet to explore as a different take. However, Nakia could one day have a path to the title if she and T'Challa marry. There's also the chance that M'Baku could become the ruler of Wakanda eventually, providing for a very different take on the character.
As interesting as it may be to see some other versions of Black Panther, that is hopefully something that isn't going to happen for an extended period of time. Boseman is terrific as T'Challa and only has three appearances (and just one solo movie) done so far. There's still room to explore the character even if he isn't the Black Panther, which was a big part of Black Panther, but we still need to see how his reign plays out for a few more films. One day down the line it'll be time for someone else to become the Black Panther, but right now there's still plenty to do with Boseman's take.
Black Panther is now available on VOD, Blu-Ray, and DVD.