Black Panther was the first black superhero ever, co-created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, first appearing in July 1966. The character debuted several years before other black heroes such as Luke Cage, Falcon, Jon Stewart’s Green Lantern and others.
In the comics, The Black Panther is a ceremonial title given to the chief of the Panther Tribe of the African nation of Wakanda, the home of Vibranium. In additional to ruling the country, he’s also chief of various different Tribes, collectively known as the Wakandas. The title is indeed hereditary but has to be earned!
In the distant past, a meteorite made of a vibration-absorbing mineral crashed in Wakanda and was unearthed. Fearing that others would exploit this precious metal, the ruler King T’Chaka carried on the tradition of his ancestors and concealed his nation from the outside World. T’Chaka was eventually murdered by Ulysses Klaw, who you may have seen in Avengers: Age of Ultron played by Andy Serkis, in an attempt to seize the Vibranium.
Eventually – T’Chaka’s son, T’Challa, underwent the tough trials to become The Black Panther and was successful. He sold little amounts of Vibranium to Scientific Institutes, became the richest character in comic book history and stocked up on advanced technology. You may recognise the name of this fictional metal, it is indeed the material that Captain America’s shield is made from, and we recently learned that Vision is made from the same stuff too.
Black Panther is set to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe next year in Captain America: Civil War, seemingly taking the neutral position that was occupied by Spider-Man in the comics. Chadwick Boseman has been officially cast as T’Challa and even came out at a Marvel convention where his solo movie was announced (see below).
Chadwick Boseman gave a great performance in Get On Up as the Godfather of Soul, James Brown, filling us with a whole lot of confidence for his performance as the King of Wakanda. Nothing has been confirmed, but we’re pretty sure Serkis will reprise his role as Klaw in the solo movie due July 2018, heck he even got his arm chopped off just like in the comics!
The movie has had director problems, with Ava DuVernay passing on the opportunity. DuVernay directed the well-praised Selma and did a very good job so this seemed a match made in heaven but it wasn’t made to be. We’re yet to know who will helm the project but follow us on Twitter to find out as soon as it’s announced!