Some Marvel fans have launched a petition to get the attention of Marvel Studios with their cause being a recasting of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's T'Challa. T'Challa, the King of Wakanda and Black Panther, was portrayed by Chadwick Boseman through four Marvel Studios titles before Boseman passed away following a battle with colon cancer. Since his passing, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige revealed they are electing not to recast the role with Black Panther II on the way. Many fans agree with this call but now some are trying to share their opinion which sees value in having another actor play this role.
"If Marvel Studios removes T’Challa, it would be at the expense of the audiences (especially Black boys and men) who saw themselves in him. That also includes the millions of fans who were inspired by the character as well," the petition's starter who goes by E-Man Movie Reviews (real name Emmanuel Noisette) wrote in the Change.org page. "By not recasting, it could stifle the opportunity for one of the most popular, leading Black superheroes to add on to their legacy. The #1 way to kill a legend, is to stop telling their story."
The host of this petition went on to share their perspective of how recasting T'Challa is not replacing Boseman. "#RecastTChalla is not a call to replace Chadwick Boseman. No one could ever do that," the petition reads. "It is not asking for an immediate replacement either. Nor is this calling for the prevention of other characters to take up the mantle of Black Panther like Shuri or anyone else. This petition is merely asking to continue the portrayal of T’Challa in the MCU. #RecastTChalla is a call to fulfill the role that Chadwick Boseman worked so hard for the world to see."
With the petition closing in at 2,500 signatures at the time of this article's publishing, Noisette's call for continuing the Black superhero's story was gaining some traction. Comments in regard to the idea see a mixed reception. "As the first Black superhero in mainstream comics and the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), T’Challa is literally Black history," Noisette said. "He was created in 1966, during the Civil Rights era, to be the embodiment of positive Black representation. His character was also instrumental in uplifting Black female characters such as Storm, the Dora Milaje, and his own sister Shuri. There is no more positive form of representation in Black culture than strong Black men and women supporting one another. T’Challa’s character was only scratching the surface with his story in the MCU, and there is so much more left to tell."
Right now, Disney and Marvel Studios have only indicated a plan to move forward with Black Panther II without recasting Boseman. The new should begin production before the year is ends.