Marvel Entertainment released a series of behind-the-scenes deep dives about the making of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever with a new podcast hosted by writer Ta-Nehisi Coates.
Wakanda Forever: The Official Black Panther Podcast kicks off with a conversation with the movie’s director Ryan Coogler.
According to Polygon.com, Coogler will make regular appearances on the podcast. His initial appearance came as he was in the editing process of the movie and talks about grieving the loss of Chadwick Boseman.
Coogler shared that he and Boseman knew each other since their college days at Howard University. He can be heard audibly tearing up as he talks about Boseman, who died in 2020 of colon cancer. In the interview, Coogler explained that a director’s main job, in his opinion, is to convince other people to believe in their ideas and their truth—and that in those terms, Boseman embodied T’Challa.
He noted that Boseman’s first appearance as T’Challa in Captain America: Civil War prompted “difficult conversations” at Marvel about how the first Black Panther would portray the mythical world of Wakanda. Coogler noted that Boseman had a specific vision which was realized as the movie was planned.
Coogler also said Boseman’s vision was one reason why recasting the role of T’Challa wasn’t an option. Instead, he had to rewrite the script which had been completed just weeks before Boseman’s death, and had to explain to everyone involved that “Heroes, great men… die.”
The first episode of Wakanda Forever: The Official Black Panther Podcast is available on Spotify and other podcast platforms. Marvel notes that “subsequent episodes will be available weekly in January 2023, celebrating the five-year anniversary of the first Black Panther film.”