Black Panther’s “Wakanda Forever” Shatters Records

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. © 2022 MARVEL.

Marvel Studios

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. © 2022 MARVEL.

Jasmin Marquez-Montes, Staff Writer

The theater filled with silence as the audience watched the tribute to Chadwick Boseman play across the screen at the start of “Wakanda Forever,” the second film in the Black Panther series. How would the marvel cinematic franchise carry on after losing its leading man?  

An emotional beginning made everyone silent as the film explained how T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) died. He contracted an unknown disease, and his sister was frantically trying to find a cure for him. After her brother’s death, Shuri is angry at herself for not being quick enough to save him and spends the rest of the film attempting to define her role in Wakanda without him. 

The main villain of the film, Namor, is from a kingdom named Talokan, home to a blue water-breathing species. Oxygen is toxic to Namor’s people, but he is the only one from Talokan who is not blue and can breathe without water. Namor is a mutant with tiny wings on his ankles that allow him to fly. 

Namor’s goal is to protect his people by overthrowing the other nations because he says they are a threat – they all want the vibranium that exists in his kingdom. Namor aims to punish the inventor of a drill that can access the vibranium.

At first, Namor appeals to Wakanda in the hopes of making an ally to help him protect the vibranium. Eventually, he becomes Wakanda’s enemy when Shuri decides to protect the drill’s inventor. After trying to find ways to defeat Namor, Shuri concludes that the only way to stop him is to become the next Black Panther.  

In its first weekend, “Wakanda Forever” made $180 million dollars in the box office. It beat the record of the opening weekend of the “Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” which made $158 million in November 2013. “Wakanda Forever” has now earned $700 million in the box office worldwide.  

Although Marvel has not said anything about a third movie, everyone in the Marvel community is hoping to see Shuri return to the big screen in her leading role. Others are relieved that this movie takes a realistic approach with Boseman’s death.  

“I would have been upset if they recast Chadwick Boseman’s character,” Mrs. Donnelly said.

“Wakanda Forever” reserves the number one spot at the box office for more than five weeks. This is the first time a film has held the top spot since “Spider-Man: No Way Home” in 2021.