More than 50,000 Marvel fans have come together in agreeance that the main character in the Black Panther sequel should perhaps be recast.
A Change.org petition requesting a new actor to play the role of T’Challa in the second installment of the Marvel blockbuster received over 50,000 signatures, the New York Daily News reports. Black Panther fans are hoping for a new T’Challa following the untimely passing of Chadwick Boseman in August 2020.
“This is a call for the President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige, Co-President Louis D’Esposito, and Writer/Director Ryan Coogler to reconsider their decision, and recast the role of “T’Challa” in the Black Panther franchise,” the petition reads.
The petition is in response to Feige’s decision to “honor the legacy” of Boseman by not recasting T’Challa within the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
“To honor the legacy that Chad helped us build through his portrayal of the king of Wakanda, we want to continue to explore the world of Wakanda and all of the rich and varied characters introduced in the first film,” Feige said in December 2020, as noted by Deadline.
But even Chadwick’s brother, Derrick Boseman, is on board with the role of T’Challa being recast to continue the legacy of Black superheroes in mainstream films.
“If Marvel Studios removes T’Challa, it would be at the expense of the audiences (especially Black boys and men) who saw themselves in him. That also includes the millions of fans who were inspired by the character as well,” the call to action continued.
“By not recasting, it could stifle the opportunity for one of the most popular leading Black superheroes to add on to their legacy.”
In November, Marvel VP of Development Nate Moore said T’Challa would not be in the “MCU 616 universe.”
“When Chad passed, it was a real conversation we had with [director Ryan] Coogler about, ‘What do we do?’ and it was a fast conversation,” Moore explained on the Ringer-Verse podcast.
“It wasn’t weeks; it was minutes of we had to figure out how to move that franchise on without that character. Because I think we all feel so much of T’Challa in the MCU on the screen… is tied to Chadwick’s performance.”
Black Panther 2 is set for release on Nov. 11, 2022.