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How Wakanda Forever Trailers Hid New Black Panther's Identity In Plain Sight

ScreenRant logo ScreenRant 2/7/2023 Felipe Rangel
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How the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever trailers managed to hide Shuri's identity as the new Black Panther in plain sight has been revealed by director Ryan Coogler. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever showed the story of Shuri's ascension as the new bearer of the Black Panther mantle in the Marvel Cinematic Universe following the real-life death of T'Challa actor Chadwick Boseman. While speculation over the new Black Panther was high leading up to the movie, it appears that Shuri's new status was revealed in the very first trailer.

According to Coogler on the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever director's commentary, one important rule of the Black Panther franchise made Shuri's role as Wakanda's new protector clear from the movie's very first trailer. Shuri taking over as the new Black Panther was evident in the trailers due to the character's use of black clothes, which Coogler reveals to be something only the Black Panther can wear — "kind of like Wakandan rules in many ways."

Related: Forget Namor, Riri Williams Is Shuri’s Perfect Love Interest

What The Future Of The Black Panther Mantle In The MCU Looks Like

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever had a difficult task ahead of its release, with the movie both needing to follow up on the cultural event generated by its predecessor while dealing with the death of lead star Boseman. Director Coogler did extensive rewrites on the movie, which had a complete script featuring T'Challa ready to shoot, in order to honor Boseman and his character's passing while charting a path forward for the rest of the Wakandan characters. The revelation of the existence of T'Challa's son, Prince Toussaint, was an extremely beautiful moment that capped off a great exploration of grief.

Replay Video

The MCU is well-known for the interconnection between its different franchises, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was no different, with the appearances of characters such as Everett Ross (Martin Freeman), Valentina Allegra de Fontaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), Riri Williams (Dominique Thorne) and main villain Namor (Tenoch Huerta) helping to insert the movie — a very personal project and story — into the wider MCU. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever's poignant post-credits introduction of Toussaint paves the way for the character to grow up to someday fill in on his father's shoes in the MCU. T'Challa's son could be his eventual Avengers replacement while Shuri takes on the mantle for the immediate future.

There is no rush to see Toussaint become the new Black Panther, as Shuri deserves her time to shine in the mantle. When Wakanda needed her the most, Shuri rose up to the occasion and defended her nation from the impending Talokan invasion, besting Namor in combat while sparing his life. That action was significant, as it showed Shuri was finally on a path of healing from T'Challa's death, letting go of the anger she had in her heart for both what happened to her brother and Namor's indirect killing of her mother. With M'Baku as the new king of Wakanda, Shuri ends Black Panther: Wakanda Forever free to help the Avengers as the new Black Panther, wherever the fight might take her.

Next: Why Queen Ramonda Was Killed Off In Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Source: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever director's commentary

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