Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige explained why the role of T’Challa in Black Panther was not recast after Chadwick Boseman’s death. Speaking to Empire, he said, “It just felt like it was much too soon to recast”. 

The actor brought the Wakandan hero to life in Captain America: Civil War, Black Panther, and the Avengers movies, before succumbing to colon cancer in August 2020. Since Boseman had kept his medical condition a secret, fans were taken by surprise and there was confusion about who would play Black Panther next. 

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Before the release of the sequel Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which was shot after Boseman’s death, fans started a campaign to honour the character and actor, by recasting T’Challa. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has not done so yet, and there is speculation that T’Challa’s sister Shuri could take on the mantle of Black Panther. Not only does this tie in with the comic lore but actor Letitia Wright also revealed in an earlier interview that she had a word with director Ryan Coogler about her character becoming the Black Panther. 

For now, Feige has chosen a different Black Panther, rather than recasting T’Challa and he explained his decision in the interview, saying “Stan Lee always said that Marvel represents the world outside your window. And we had talked about how, as extraordinary and fantastical as our characters and stories are, there’s a relatable and human element to everything we do. The world is still processing the loss of Chad. And [director] Ryan [Coogler] poured that into the story.”

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While T’Challa will not appear in the Black Panther sequel, the film pays tribute to the late actor. 

Feige added, “The conversations were entirely about, yes, ‘What do we do next?’ And how could the legacy of Chadwick — and what he had done to help Wakanda and the Black Panther become these incredible, aspirational, iconic ideas — continue? That’s what it was all about.”

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever hits theaters on November 11.