Over on Twitter, Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Pacific Rim Uprising star John Boyega was asked about a "lack of diversity" in Marvel Studios' upcoming superhero blockbuster Black Panther, which is unique in that much of the movie takes place in Africa and most of its cast is Black. Boyega wasn't having any of it:
Because it's about time Biiiihhhhh— John Boyega (@JohnBoyega) October 17, 2017
Boyega is no stranger to complaints about diversity, nor is he shy about shutting down complainers: the British actor was on the receiving end of complaints when he — being a Black man — won a starring role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Boyega has been outspoken regarding the treatment he's received in the years since, most recently venting his frustrations about the "negative" discussion that came with his Star Wars casting.
“When I was exposed to the world in Star Wars, I also was exposed to the reality of ignorance that still exists around the world,” Boyega said. “When I was in Star Wars there was a semi, kind of racial discussion that was quite negative when it first came out.”
“I was the only person to always talk about the color of my skin,” he continued. “In every interview my skin color comes up. If Daisy [Ridley] does an interview, her skin color is not going to come up. … It doesn’t matter what position you’re in — once you’re black, you’re black, and these idiots always have something to say about it.”
Marvel Studios has received high praise for Black Panther's mostly Black cast, putting online commentators like the above in the minority. Though part of the movie was shot in South Korea — scenes that can be glimpsed in the teaser trailer and the newer theatrical trailer — much of the film will explore the Kingdom of Wakanda, a fictional and isolated African nation — the most technologically advanced nation in the Marvel Universe.
Chadwick Boseman, reprising his role of T'Challa / Black Panther following his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in Captain America: Civil War, leads a cast that includes Lupita Nyong'o (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), Michael B. Jordan (Creed), Danai Gurira (The Walking Dead), Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Sterling K. Brown (This is Us), Letitia Wright (Ready Player One), Martin Freeman (Sherlock), Andy Serkis (Star Wars: The Last Jedi), Angela Bassett (Malcolm X) and Forest Whitaker (Rogue One).
Audiences all over the world have already made Black Panther one of the most highly-anticipated movies of 2018.
Black Panther hits theaters February 16.