Kevin Feige of Marvel Studios said Black Panther 2 will "honor the legacy" of Chadwick Boseman and not recast T'Challa, but fans want to honor the late actor another way: by having Boseman's beloved character live on in the MCU. Boseman — who played the African king and superhero in 2016's Captain America: Civil War, 2018's Black Panther, and Avengers sequels Infinity War and Endgame — died last August at the age of 43 after a four-year battle with colon cancer. Feige and fellow Black Panther producer Nate Moore later confirmed Marvel Studios, now in production on sequel Wakanda Forever, would never recast Boseman's role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
"The Legacy of T'Challa as the Black Panther shouldn't end with Chadwick, it should start with him. Continue what he started," one fan tweeted as part of the viral "Recast T'Challa" and "Save T'Challa" campaign urging Marvel to reconsider writing Boseman's character out of the MCU. Fans previously launched a change.org petition in support of recasting the role — not to replace Boseman, but "to continue the portrayal of T'Challa in the MCU."
"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," reads the petition nearing 50,000 signatures. "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."
Last December, Feige announced Marvel would not recast Boseman's T'Challa because the late actor's portrayal "is iconic and transcends any iteration of the character in any other medium from Marvel's past." Instead, Feige said, "To honor the legacy that Chad helped us build, we want to continue to explore the world of Wakanda and all the rich and varied characters introduced in the first film."
Those characters include princess Shuri (Letitia Wright), T'Challa's tech-minded younger sister, mother Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Wakandan spy Nakia (Lupita Nyong'o), Dora Milaje general Okoye (Danai Gurira), and Jabari mountain tribe leader M'Baku (Winston Duke). A Black Panther spinoff series further exploring their home, the technologically advanced African kingdom of Wakanda, is in development at Disney+.
"You will not see T'Challa in the MCU 616 Universe. We couldn't do it," Moore, executive producer of Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, told Ringer-Verse last month. "When [Chadwick] passed, there was a real conversation we had with [director Ryan] Coogler about what do we do, and it was a fast conversation. It wasn't weeks, it was minutes of discussing how we move this franchise forward without this character because I think we all feel so much of T'Challa on the screen is tied to Chadwick Boseman."
The actor's brother, Derrick Boseman, reportedly told TMZ that Chadwick would have wanted T'Challa to continue in the MCU. Paraphrasing Derrick's comments, TMZ reported "Chadwick thought T'Challa was bigger than just himself as one guy."
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently scheduled for release on November 11, 2022. See more tweets below:
Here’s the thing, Marvel’s writers have created a vast storyline for this character. It doesn’t have to be the #Tchalla we experienced with Chadwick. Whether it’s for the films or #Wakanda coming to Disney plus, this character is needed.#RecastTchalla#WakandaForever pic.twitter.com/8a2mlGQyQb— Brandon G. Alexander (@iambalexander) December 25, 2021
Chadwick Boseman Is Not Tchalla. Tchalla Is Not Chadwick Boseman. Tchalla is Black Panther. Chadwick knew that. Tchalla's story is just beginning. Can't kill him off after one movie. #RecastTchalla— KooL BreZz (@Kool_brezZ) December 21, 2021
TChalla vs Dr. Doom,— Planet 🌍 Khan (@xMAJINKHANx) December 27, 2021
Tchalla and Storm relationship,
Tchalla linking up with Fantastic Four, & Tchalla vs Namor. These are stories that we will never see if the character Tchalla is killed off, we would have to settle for a handicap world of Wakanda. #RecastTchalla #SaveTChalla pic.twitter.com/ENKSxd5dQd
They threw out and reworked the original script for Rise of Skywalker bc they refused to recast Leia for episode 9, and the results were more disrespectful than any recasting could have been. Let’s carry on Chadwick’s legacy, not bury it away #SaveTChalla #RecastTchalla pic.twitter.com/G6YxQijw7B— LoseYourself (@LoseYourselfPod) December 27, 2021
This character meant so much for the black community and Chadwick helped bring that to fruition. So to let a legacy end because of an untimely tragedy is unfortunate. I can’t speak for Chadwick but I do know he was more than just T’Challa #RecastTChalla pic.twitter.com/MgBE9Ud7R9— AZH 🎬 (@AzhmereLB) December 27, 2021
If it was the honor of Chadwick's life to bring King T'Challa to LIFE, then how would potentially killing that character honor Chadwick in return? 🤔#RecastTChalla #SaveTChalla pic.twitter.com/7qs27ZwgkY— E-Man's Movie Reviews – #RecastTChalla (@EmansReviews) December 27, 2021
Interesting, culturally (for the black community) T’Challa (not a random Black Panther) means even more than Spider-Man. Chadwick Boseman understood his characterization of T’Challa meant an extensive great deal to his community. #RecastTChalla #SaveTChalla https://t.co/ZxKSjABGYd— #RecastTChalla (@iCORNELIUST) December 27, 2021
T'Challa wasn't Chadwick Boseman's best role or best performance. It was simply his most visible & got him the recognition he already deserved. Recognition that other underappreciated black actors in Hollywood need. T'Challa living on means Chad's name lives on. #RecastTchalla pic.twitter.com/A80tnmMfRY— T'Challa: The Black Panther facts (@Ekie0) December 27, 2021
Last year, @MarvelStudios said they would not recast the role of T'Challa. No recast = being canceled.🤷🏿♂️#RecastTChalla was started to honor @chadwickboseman by allowing his work to continue. We want to #SaveTChalla for all the young kids who looked up to the character & actor. pic.twitter.com/mE3kjY1oWW— E-Man's Movie Reviews – #RecastTChalla (@EmansReviews) December 27, 2021