The highly anticipated sequel “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” premiered in theaters on Nov. 11. The sequel to the award-winning film was made in the wake of tragedy as the cast mourned the loss of star Chadwick Boseman.
According to The Associated Press, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” broke the slow spell that the box office had experienced since the summer. The film, which features Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira and Tenoch
Huerta, earned $180 million in its opening weekend, becoming the highest-grossing November opening in North America, while making nearly $330 million globally.
“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” takes audiences back to the African nation that is mourning the loss of Prince T’Challa, who was played by the late Boseman in the first film. The nation is facing threat from Tenoch Huerta’s character, Namor, and his warriors.
“I thought that the movie was very good. It lives up to the first movie, but I wouldn’t say that it’s better,” said sophomore Eamon Bednarcik. “It was well written and I think the director did a really good job.”
“I thought it definitely lived up to the hype of the first movie,” said junior Elaina Edwards. “It had central themes of grief, death and unity and was very well directed.”
According to The Associated Press, the first film broke the box office and was released in February 2018 and went on to gross $1.4 billion worldwide, making it one of the highest-grossing films of all time. The movie was nominated for seven awards at the Academy Awards, winning three of them. It was the first superhero movie to win Best Picture and the first Marvel Cinematic Universe film to win numerous categories.
A sequel has been in the works since the release of the first movie. However, that all changed as soon as Boseman passed after battling colon cancer for four years during the summer of 2020.
According to The Associated Press, director Ryan Clooger and his team were faced with revamping the script after he passed. The movie became about the death of Boseman’s character T’Challa and the grieving kingdom he left behind.
“They had to rewrite the entire movie,” said Bednarcik. “They originally planned for Chadwick Boseman to be in it. I think the movie does a great job carrying out the original vision even with the passing of Chadwick Boseman.”
Many fans were concerned about how the two would compare after the tragic passing of the star.
“In my personal opinion, I think that ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ could have been better,” said sophomore Victor Colonna. “I did not get the same jumping out of my seat feeling that I got when watching the first movie.”
Colonna felt that it was the heartbreaking passion of Boseman that contributed to this. “I just felt like something was missing,” he said.
“I wanted to see how the two movies would compare after the passing of Chadwick and I would say they did the best they could,” said senior Gediyon Prince. “It’s kind of hard when your main character dies, but I would say that this movie lives up to the first one and honors him well.”
According to The Associated Press, if ticket sales continue the way they are going, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” is expected to do as well as the first movie.
“I have not gotten the chance to see it yet, but I plan on spending the upcoming holiday in the theater with my family. If it is anything like the rest of the Marvel franchise, I know that it will be great,” said junior Stasia Dussault.