Ryan Coogler and company are hard at work on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the sequel to the 2018 blockbuster that turned the world on its head and proved to be one of if not the best entry in the MCU. Plot details about the movie are being kept under wraps for the moment, but we did get some very intriguing casting news. Variety reports that Michaela Coel, the triple-threat actor, writer and poet behind excellent shows like Chewing Gum and I May Destroy You will join the crew in Wakanda.
We don’t know much more than that, but that’s exciting enough. Coel’s career is definitely one to watch, and nobody watches ascendant careers more closely than Marvel Studio’s Kevin Feige. She achieved enormous acclaim for her 2020 BBC series I May Destroy You, which is about a young comedian struggling to rebuild her life following a rape, something Coel said she wrote in the wake of her own sexual assault.
Before that, she wrote and starred in Chewing Gum for Netflix, which was also inspired by her experience of being raised in a deeply Pentecostal household and struggling with the religious restrictions imposed by her family.
We don’t know who Coel will playing in Wakanda Forever, or even whether she’ll be an established figure from Marvel Comics or a new character Coogler’s cooked up. She will join previous Black Panther stars Letitia Wright, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke, along with newcomer Tenoch Huerta and who knows what other surprises this movie will have up its sleeve. Writer and director Coogler has spoken honestly about his struggle to use the sequel to honor the memory of the late Chadwick Boseman. “He lived a beautiful life,” Coogler wrote last year. “And he made great art. Day after day, year after year. That was who he was. He was an epic firework display. I will tell stories about being there for some of the brilliant sparks till the end of my days. What an incredible mark he’s left for us.”