After the onslaught of comments on Thor: Love and Thunder, Marvel’s next film Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has become the main focus of fans. Obviously, being made after the death of Chadwick Boseman will be a hard but exciting ride for this Marvel entry.
Ever since its predecessor was nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, the question will be raised of whether or not this film will turn the same trick. It’s very rare for Marvel movies to pull a feat like this off, but it’s not impossible. If Martin Scorsese is right about Marvel films, they are not "cinema" and are only to be viewed as amusement park rides. However, it seems that Black Panther has elevated the genre to a higher echelon than that of children’s entertainment.
Nevertheless, can the Black Panther sequel garner the same success and score a nod for Best Picture?
Disclaimer: This article reflects the views of the author.
Something that sets Wakanda Forever aside from other Marvel movies is that it is following in the footsteps of its Oscar-winning predecessor. The first Black Panther movie was a groundbreaking film that had the first black superhero in a leading film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It has made strides in its greatness by having a sympathetic villain and an ardent hero.
The previous Black Panther film saw T’Challa (the late Chadwick Boseman) as the hero taking down villains and protecting his land. He runs into a rogue named Erik Stevens who goes by the name of Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). The two clash over the ethics of keeping Wakanda a secret. In the end, T’Challa defeats Killmonger and reveals Wakanda’s true power to the world.
Now that Wakanda is known to the world, the film could go in the direction of picking up where the last film left off. Wakanda could honor the promise of T’Challa and see the good fortune that it brought to the outside world. Using that similar tone and formula could launch it into the Oscars' arms and be recognized for its highest honor.
Speaking of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa, you can’t have the character of Black Panther without mentioning him. Given that Boseman sadly passed away in 2020 of colon cancer, the actor was unable to commence filming. However, all may not be lost in the land of milk and honey. Honoring the past instead of recasting T’Challa may have been Marvel’s best move. It allows the filmmakers to work around the loss of the actor and still make a movie that looks incredible.
This technique in working around reality not only impacts the fanbase but also how films may be made from now on. The decision to honor Boseman might move the Academy so much that they would have no choice but to nominate the film.
T’Challa’s sister, Shuri will most likely take up the mantle of the Black Panther. Moreover, the stakes are a lot higher with Namor attempting to flood Wakanda, according to the trailer. Much like Boseman’s death, this pivotal turning point will see a new chapter for the country of Wakanda.
Raising the stakes could not only make for an intriguing plot but a stirring opposition for the hero to take on. Grand-scale movies like Avatar and Mad Max: Fury Road have both been nominated for Best Picture for their achievements in technology and storytelling. With that being said, it wouldn’t be that much of a stretch to see the Black Panther sequel repeat the same success.
Will Marvel’s next foray lead to some recognized Oscar gold? It might become the film of the year if it happens.