Did 'Avengers: Infinity War' Directors Just Confirm Ryan Coogler's Return For 'Black Panther 2' In Marvel Phase 4?

It's been some time since Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige confirmed that a Black Panther sequel was green lit. Now, thanks to a potential Freudian slip by Avengers: Infinity War director Joe Russo, it appears that Ryan Coogler will be returning to Wakanda once again.

On a press tour to promote Infinity War, the Russo brothers admitted they've let three filmmakers watch the full cut of their upcoming movie. The one caveat? Each of the filmmakers had to have a property Infinity War would affect as the Marvel Cinematic Universe progresses into Phase 4.

"We allowed James [Gunn], Jon Watts, and Ryan Coogler to see it [Avengers: Infinity War] up to this point," Joe Russo said. "You have to be working on a film that this movie will affect your storytelling going forward."

His brother — Anthony — then added that the brothers had been in contact with Ant-man and the Wasp director Peyton Reed as well.

James Gunn had previously confirmed he would be coming back to wrap up the first Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy while Jon Watts was announced for the untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel coming out next year.

That leaves Coogler, who had yet to be confirmed to return until now. This isn't saying Coogler's job was at risk by any means. In fact, after Black Panther's monstrous run at the box office, Coogler probably had the best job security at Marvel Studios outside of Feige himself.

Getting close to wrapping up its time at the box office, Black Panther ends it run as the top grossing superhero movie of all-time in the United States, having earned just under $677 million. Worldwide, Black Panther finished with $1.3 billion — good enough for third in the Marvel Cinematic universe and tenth across all genres all-time.

After critically-acclaimed hits such as Fruitvale Station and Creed, Black Panther finally turned Coogler into a household name. His direction over Black Panther has already led to him being named the CinemaCon Director of the Year.

“In just a few short years, Ryan Coogler has positioned himself as one of the most dynamic, talented and successful directors of our time,” said Mitch Neuhauser, Managing Director of CinemaCon.

“With the release of Black Panther, he has given us a film that is not just a box office juggernaut in grossing more than $1.3 billion globally, but a film that has crossed all cultures and ethnicities and has resonated beyond anyone’s wildest imagination from a societal standpoint. His is a landmark film and we couldn’t be more delighted to be honoring him as our Director of the Year.”

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What do you think about Coogler's return to the MCU? Are you on the hype train for Black Panther 2?

Black Panther stars Chadwick Boseman (T'Challa), Danai Gurira (Okoye), Winston Duke (M'Baku) and Letitia Wright (Shuri) will next return to help defend Wakanda, and the universe, in Avengers: Infinity War, in theaters April 27.