Miss Press Release, we’re gonna let you finish, but we just had to jump in here and swoon the fuck out. We thought perhaps Jesus was telling us he loved us when he gave us the Wonder Woman movie of our dreams this year, but clearly, that was just a prelude to LUPITA IN A SUPERHERO MOVIE PLAYING A BADASS DORA MILAJE WARRIOR WOMAN IN A KILLER COSTUME OMG
SORRY. WE FELL OUT FOR A MINUTE THERE.
Also, hello there, Michael B. and Chadwick. This is all very culturally important and a true watershed moment in the development of this particular genre of film. Which is why we’re being all respectful and stuff and not, like, horribly objectifying, because WOW. GENTLEMEN.
This movie is going to be a veritable showcase of fabulous hairstyles for people of color, isn’t it?
Okay, Miss PR. Take it away:
EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK AT BLACK PANTHER
EW senior writer Anthony Breznican takes us to Wakanda, the advanced African nation that we got a glimpse of at the end of Captain America: Civil War. It’s ruled by the most groundbreaking hero in the Marvel universe. On the set of Black Panther (out Feb. 16), EW has the first look at how this regal cast is shattering a cinematic ceiling. In 1966, Black Panther claimed a proud place in history as the first black superhero, and in 2018, this movie will add to that legacy as the first big-budget comic-book tentpole to feature a black hero, a black filmmaker, black screenwriters (Coogler and Joe Robert Cole of American Crime Story), a black executive producer (Civil War’s Nate Moore), and a predominantly black cast, starring Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther/T’Challa.
As the ruler of this fictional African kingdom, T’Challa’s got the weight of a whole nation on his shoulders as he defends his homeland from a cast of star-studded villains, including Andy Serkis’ arm-less mercenary and Michael B. Jordan’s exiled outcast and challenger to the throne. T’Challa’s friends also encompass the biggest of stars—from Angela Bassett, who plays his mother, to Lupita Nyong’o’s agent love interest, and Martin Freeman’s CIA officer.
Director/co-writer Ryan Coogler says, “What makes [Black Panther] different from other superheroes, first and foremost, is he doesn’t see himself as a superhero. He sees himself as a politician.”
As for its place in today’s cultural conversation, Coogler has a personal connection to Black Panther. As a young boy at a comic books store in his hometown, he asked, “‘You got any black superheroes? Got anybody who looks like me?’ The first thing they did was walk me over to Black Panther.”
Now, Coogler is doing the same thing on a global scale. “Ryan’s making this movie for his 8-year-old self,” says Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios and producer on Black Panther. “That’s why you do it. Most importantly, you do it for other 8-year-olds, to inspire the next generation the way we were inspired. And when Ryan was growing up, there weren’t that many of these heroes to be inspired by that looked like him.”
[Photo Credit: Courtesy of Entertainment Weekly]