When Black Panther hits theaters next year, it will be completely like anything else in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Set in the fictional African nation of Wakanda, the film will introduce audiences to an advanced nation untouched by the outside world's influence and according to one of the film's stars, that's part of what makes the film "brave."
Lupita Nyong'o, who plays Nakia in the upcoming film, recently told Vogue that Black Panther is "brave for an action film." In the movie, Wakanda is an advanced nation that was never colonized and therefore developed without Western influence or interference. For Nyong'o, it felt very personal.
"For me, as an African who lives outside Africa and wrestles with that dichotomy of tradition and modernity, this is almost healing," Nyong'o said.
The idea of creating Wakanda with the right balance of tradition and modernity while staying true to the idea of it being an untouched nation is something that went into every element of Black Panther as it's something that's never really been seen before in film or television.
"The little Kenyan child in me leaped for joy because it's such an affirmation," Nyong'o said. "What colonialism does is cause an identity crisis about one's own culture."
It's a sentiment that Chadwick Boseman, who plays T'Challa/Black Panther, echoes. He previously told CNET that Wakanda having never been colonized by Europe influenced many details, including how T'Challa speaks.
"People think about how race has affected the world," Boseman said. "It's not just in the States. Colonialism is the cousin of slavery. Colonialism in Africa would have it that, in order to be a ruler, his education comes from Europe. I wanted to be completely sure that we didn't convey that idea because that would be counter to everything that Wakanda is about."
Audiences will get to see Wakanda and how different a world it is when Black Panther hits theaters on February 16, 2018.