One of the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever stars tease that no one has guessed correctly yet who the new Black Panther is in the sequel. Phase 4 is almost over, as Marvel Studios have one more film on the slate before they begin Phase 5 in 2023, which will continue The Multiverse Saga. While Phase 4 consisted of new franchises, as well as fleshing out established characters, the final 2022 film will be bittersweet, to say the least. As Black Panther: Wakanda Forever gets ready to open in theaters, it will bid farewell to King T’Challa following Chadwick Boseman’s tragic passing in August 2020.
Since Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios chose not to recast T’Challa, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will heavily focus on his family dealing with the loss of the MCU hero. While the circumstances have yet to be revealed, the Black Panther sequel will see the kingdom fight for their nation and deal with new threats, including the rise of Namor, played by Tenoch Huerta. As T’Challa’s time in the MCU comes to a head, a new Black Panther will take over for him, which has been shown in both of the trailers.
Ever since Black Panther: Wakanda Forever started filming, the main theory has been that T’Challa’s sister, Shuri, played by Letitia Wright, will take over the mantle. However, according to two of the stars in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, it may not be as simple as some think. In an interview with Elle, Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira, who plays Nakia and Okoye, respectively, chatted about the speculations and theories about who the new Black Panther will be in the sequel. According to Gurira, audience members are not getting “all of it right,” as she and Nyong’o shared the following:
Nyong’o: “We love the speculation.”
Gurira: “They’re not getting all of it right!“
Nyong’o : “No, they haven’t guessed it at all.”
If Shuri Isn’t The New Black Panther, Who Is It?
When Gurira suggests that people haven’t figured out the whole mystery, it could imply that the film may see more than one Black Panther. If Shuri truly isn’t the new Black Panther, then the mystery gets even more interesting because there are a lot of reasons why T’Challa’s sister would be the natural candidate. Not only did Shuri become Black Panther in the comics, but merchandise, including leaked LEGO sets, have strongly suggested that Shuri will be the one to succeed T’Challa. Another character who has been theorized to take up the Black Panther mantle is Nakia, which would be an intriguing direction too.
Since there is only a month left until Black Panther: Wakanda Forever opens worldwide, it won’t be long until everyone gets their answer, but it will nonetheless pull the heartstrings of millions. Boseman became synonymous with T’Challa, which is why the idea of a recast was a difficult one, as he was a huge reason for the character’s legacy on the big screen. No matter who is behind the mask, whether it is Shuri or someone else, it will definitely be a challenge to see the franchise without Boseman. Hopefully, however they deal with T’Challa’s passing in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the sequel will do a solid job in passing on the touch and honoring the fallen king’s legacy.