It’s been nearly a week since the film Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was released, and it has already surpassed the most recent Marvel Universe movie by a landslide. Wakanda Forever opened on November 11th, and grossed $84,285,721. Compared to Thor: Love and Thunder which debuted at $69,554,073 back in July.
Is it possible that the highly controversial announcement that opening weekend was not for white people because it was not for them, has made this movie even more fascinating to moviegoers? A blogger suggested that white people buy tickets and give them to Black people instead of seeing the movie themselves. Common sense tells us that one person doesn’t speak for an entire -well, anything. Movies, just like anything else, are for everyone to enjoy, side by side. Whatever the controversy may have been, it is certainly not preventing big box office sales. The total sales in the first six days for Wakanda Forever are now at $213,202,568. Compared to Thor: Love and Thunder which was at $178,932,297 after its first six days in theaters.
This movie is a commitment because it’s a long one! Wakanda Forever, the last in the 4th phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), carries a 161-minutes runtime. Avengers: Endgame was the longest at 3 hours and 1 minute. The increased run time helps to do justice to the full gamut of storyline developments. There were so many plot points to be covered in this movie to wrap up this last phase, plus introducing new superheroes must not be rushed. Fans have been eagerly awaiting this movie since the first Black Panther film, and curiosity was at a peak for Marvel fans wondering how this new Wakanda would look without actor Chadwick Bozeman. How would the story evolve without him, portraying beloved King T’Chala, and how could the MCU honor Bozeman after his death?
Bozeman had been diagnosed with colon cancer in 2016 but chose not to publicize it and continued his acting career. Sadly, this talented young man passed away due to his illness in August 2020. His last film was Ma Rainey‘s Black Bottom, which was released posthumously that same year.
The cast in this movie did their best to honor the MCU legacy of Wakanda and Chadwick Boseman, and the onscreen mourning may have provided some catharsis. The cast features Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Winston Duke, Tenoch Huerta, Dominique Thorn, and Michael B. Jordan. Martin Freeman returns as Agent Ross, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus plays his boss/ex-wife. Angela Bassett once again plays Queen Ramonda, embodying the role of powerful royalty.
Bassett had some fascinating and glorious costumes on the silver screen, among other actors. In this very visual world, this is one excellent way for a movie to stand out. The costumes in Wakanda Forever had the skills of Oscar-winning costume designer Ruth E. Carter. Carter is an Academy Award winner for Best Costume Design, as a result of her work on Black Panther (2018). She is the first Black woman to win the award in that category. Her latest creations did not disappoint fans. There are Aztec and Mayan inspirations, and we see intricately created headpieces, brilliant use of color, and intimidating armor. The overall imagery is stunning.
With the fun of three new superheroes, a new villain, and gorgeous costumes, Wakanda Forever is capturing audience imaginations and soothing our broken hearts over the loss of beloved character King T’Chala and actor Chadwick Bozeman.
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