The unfortunate and unexpected passing of esteemed actor, humanitarian and real life superhero, Chadwick Boseman, rocked the film world to its core. Marvel specifically felt this loss as Boseman was the true embodiment of T’Challa, The Black Panther. The African superhero was a monumental character, representing People of Color worldwide. The studio has made the choice to honor what Boseman had brought to the Marvel Cinematic Universe by not recasting nor using CGI to ‘replace’ the actor. But now it would seem that some fans are wanting to have the actor replaced and for T’Challa to continue in the MCU.
E-Man’s Movie Reviews has posted a petition on Change.Org for Marvel to recast the character for future films. Currently, the petition sits at just over 3500 signatures, with a goal of 5,000. The petition states that T’Challa is too important to the POC community to have his story cut short, and that Boseman worked too hard for the character to be ‘written off’. Being that T’Challa was the first Black superhero in Marvel Comics, many believe that his presence is nor only warranted, but necessary for the continuation of the MCU, and that the best way to honor Chadwick is to allow the character to continue on the journey they had previously planned.
Marvel feels that putting anyone else in the role of T’Challa would be a dishonor to Boseman’s memory, however. The Black Panther mantle is one that can be placed to others worthy of being the protector of Wakanda, which was part of their plan in the first place (albeit further down the line). Showcasing the mantle as something more than just one man is important to the character and the story. The upcoming sequel will look to focus on the country of Wakanda as a whole and how it is up to all of its people to step up when the time calls for it.
While Marvel ultimately would have preferred to have Chadwick for many, many years in the role, life has forced this change. And considering that everyone who was close to Boseman, including Director/writer Ryan Coogler, feel it is best not to recast the role, we as fans may need to take a step back and listen to those who truly knew the man best. We all miss him like we knew him, as he impacted every fan with his powerful performances. But, for this, I will lean towards those who actually knew him when it comes to the best way to honor the man behind the mantle.
Do you want to see T’Challa recast for the Black Panther franchise? Let us know in the comments below!