Lupita Nyong’o was considered for new Black Panther

  • Warning: There are major spoilers ahead for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.”
  • In the sequel, Wakanda mourns the loss of T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman).
  • Writer Joe Robert Cole considered making Winston Duke and Lupita Nyong’o the new Black Panther.

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” has the difficult task of dealing with the tragic death of actor Chadwick Boseman, as King T’Challa dies of a mysterious illness within the film’s first few minutes.

The fallout from his death reverberates throughout the story as Shuri (Letitia Wright) and her loved ones mourn their late king while also clashing with Namor (Tenoch Huerta) and the nation of Talokan.

Shuri eventually learns to process her grief and embraces her role as Wakanda’s new Black Panther.

But writer Joe Robert Cole recently told Rolling Stone that the topic of T’Challa’s sequel was a big talking point going into the movie, noting that they wanted to find the character arc that would hit the hardest.

The writer explained: “We’d kick around the ideas and try to extrapolate where the story is going and what’s the most impactful choice – what’s the best journey? And where do you go after the movie in terms of those characters? M ‘Baku sure was someone who got kicked around a bit.”

Cole also confirmed that Lupita Nyong’o’s spy, Nakia, was in the running for Black Panther, saying “That got kicked around! Her name sure got kicked around.”

Nakia would have been an interesting choice for Black Panther, especially with her experience as a spy, but it’s clear that the focus of her arc was setting up the final reveal of T’Challa’s son, Toussaint (Divine Love Konadu-Sun).

Cole went on to say that Shuri took the suit after her brother made the most sense given her story, and it clearly ties into the source material.

The writer added, “In the comics, Shuri is Black Panther and there’s a natural organicity, I think that’s the best way to put it, that she’s going to be Panther. But you’re kicking the tires on all sorts of ideas. And you just want to make the best decision and do what’s best for the story.”

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