How Do You Make A 'Black Panther' Movie?

Posted by No_Name_ (16193 posts) - - Show Bio

If you need a little more T'Challa in your life, then you'll be happy to hear that Marvel Studios is seriously considering bringing Black Panther to the big screen. According to a report late last week by Heat Vision, Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige confirmed that a Black Panther film is definitely back in development at Marvel, and that documentarian Mark Bailey has been hired to write the script.    

While Bailey may not have a plethora of experience writing comic book characters, he is more than a little bit familiar with writing stories centered around the injustices facing humanity, having scripted both Pandemic: Facing Aids, and The Ghosts of Abu Ghraib. Needless to say, even if Bailey doesn't have Fantastic Four #52 (Black Panther's first appearance) chilling in a glass case, I think he has plenty of experience in research, so I have faith that he'll have no problem sorting through Black Panther's rich history. 

This is not the first time we have heard about a Black Panther movie. In fact, back in the early 90's,  a film was being developed by Columbia Pictures that would have starred actor Wesley Snipes. Can you imagine Wesley Snipes as Blade and T'Challa? Talk about a contradiction. There has also been another more recent adaptation of the character with the Animated Series that was set to air on BET two years ago- but never did.
== TEASER ==
BP Fans first caught a preview of the Black Panther Animated series at San Diego Comic-Con back in July of 2008. It is there that fans were promised a show focused on the popular African  comic book character. However, after leaving BET, long time Black Panther writer and former President of BET Reginald Hudlin wanted to take the show with him; and conflicts regarding rights of ownership ensued, leading both parties to refrain from airing the show in the United States whatsoever.  
The series, which was stylistically similar to a motion comic, was based on the art of John Romita Jr. and its script on Reginald Hudlin's Black Panther comic series published by Marvel. It was unfortunate that an afrocentric superhero like Black Panther wasn't able to air on BET, thus eliminating the opportunity to introduce the Black superhero to a whole new audience. The series did eventually air in Australia, however, and has since been available for purchase on iTunes. More recently, the show was also released on DVD. If you missed this show, and you are a Black Panther fan, I recommend you give it a shot as it happens to be pretty good.

It would have been nice to see the cartoon air on television, if for nothing more than to gauge how successful a film version of the character would be. When he was first introduced, Black Panther was presented as the ruler of Wakanda, an African country rich in Vibranium which had for centuries remained isolated from the rest of the world. Technologically advanced, while maintaining a rich culture and history, Wakanda is very different from the rest of the Marvel Universe and an interesting choice for the next Marvel film. With many different interpretations of Black Panther- both Ruler and spiritual incarnation of the Panther God- there are a variety of different avenues that Marvel could take T'Challa. 

The idea that Black Panther is not only the warrior and protector of an entire country isn't exactly an idea grounded in reality; but then again, neither is the story of a sort of mad scientist who built a suit to fly around in. While it is evident that Marvel has, over the years, managed to bridge the gap between the spiritual and political elements that make Black Panther, how will he work on the big screen? 

Would Marvel's film focus on the Black Panther, ruler of Wakanda who fights the Fantastic Four and Captain America, or would they make him the protector of Hells Kitchen and the new "Man Without Fear"?
#1 Posted by Norusdog (205 posts) - - Show Bio

Will Smith as T'Challa (sp?)
make it happen

#2 Posted by Danial79 (2526 posts) - - Show Bio

I'd say they'd go with the African angle for the first part, then bring it back to NYC.

#3 Posted by G-Man (39794 posts) - - Show Bio
@norusdog said:
" Will Smith as T'Challa (sp?)  make it happen "
Are you talking about's Will Smith? 

#4 Posted by Band Lone (1819 posts) - - Show Bio

I thought WEsley Snipes owned the rights to Black Panther? O_o

#5 Edited by OmegaTheDestroyer (1060 posts) - - Show Bio

Djimon Hounsou or Adewale-Akinnuoye Agbaje as T'Challa

#6 Edited by JonesDeini (3859 posts) - - Show Bio

Leave NY out of it. It has enough heroes and there's other places in the world besides America. Focus on Wakanda, its history, culture, people and what T'Challa and his family mean to it. Start the first episode as a 2part origin story and have him played by a either Michael Jai White or Djimon Honsu. White has the physical build and skills for the action scenes of the job and Honsu has the authentic accent and presence, etc. to be believable as an African King, plus he's the voice of the animated Panther. If you're going to include storm then she needs to be played by the lovely Kerry Washington. And Tracie Thoms as the head of the female warriors. 
And mo' flush Reginald Hudlin and BET with an aids infested member. May they collectively burn in the 10th circle of hell for selling out their people. Bunch of soft shoeing, shucking and jivin' sambos. Can't believe that house slave got a chance to write T'Challa.

#7 Posted by tonis (6561 posts) - - Show Bio

the easy answer, VERY CAREFULLY 
This is one of the best potential test characters to work with to compliment their avengers agenda. If done right, it opens up new flood gates. If done wrong it hinders any progress they make with the teams. 
It'd almost seem more strategic to keep it small and shoot for good direct to home, where it can blow 'up'. Rather than to try BIG and end up shooting their foots and just 'blowing up'.

#8 Posted by obscurefan (297 posts) - - Show Bio

Djimon Hounsou as Black Panther, they do that much right and I'll be sold on everything else.

#9 Posted by ssejllenrad (13028 posts) - - Show Bio
@OmegaTheDestroyer said:

Djimon Hounsou or Andewale-Akinnuoye Agbaje as T'Challa

#10 Posted by JonesDeini (3859 posts) - - Show Bio
Yeah this could be a HUGELY important film, but EVERYTHING has to be done right, like keeping Tyler Perry light years away from it. 
#11 Posted by Mr. Dead Pool (3026 posts) - - Show Bio

Will Smith as T'Challa and I'd make it like a Bond movie with Panther going all over the world tracking down a terrorist(Klaw) that threatens to destroy Wakanda and if not stopped the world!!

#12 Edited by NaruNick073 (184 posts) - - Show Bio
@OmegaTheDestroyer said:

Djimon Hounsouas T'Challa

#13 Posted by OmegaTheDestroyer (1060 posts) - - Show Bio
@ssejllenrad said:
" @OmegaTheDestroyer said:

Djimon Hounsou or Andewale-Akinnuoye Agbaje as T'Challa

This! "
Adewale not Andewale, my bad
#14 Posted by tonis (6561 posts) - - Show Bio
@JonesDeini said:
" @tonis:  Yeah this could be a HUGELY important film, but EVERYTHING has to be done right, like keeping Tyler Perry light years away from it.  "
they seriously considered using Tyler Perry, REALLY??? 
jeez, hope that's not an indicator of their impression of target audience. If so they're not gonna give BP the respect he deserves.
#15 Posted by JonesDeini (3859 posts) - - Show Bio
LMAO Nah, folk. I was just being hyperbolic. I'd hope that Marvel has much, much, much more sense than that.
#16 Posted by Crimson Eagle (1935 posts) - - Show Bio

I think either Will Smith or Denzel Washington should be T'Challa.

#17 Posted by Silver Knight75 (1250 posts) - - Show Bio

It should all (if not, mostly) take place in Wakanda. It should be as close as possible to the comic and should have Djimon Honsou playing T'Challa/ Black Panther (hopefully). The costume must be like it is in the comics in look, but it can be made a little more modern, but maybe make it look like it was made in Wakanda.

#18 Posted by They Killed Cap! (2268 posts) - - Show Bio

what do you think of the motion comics marvel has been releasing lately are they worth getting? 
little help.

#19 Edited by biggkeem89 (1478 posts) - - Show Bio

I say either Djimon Honsou, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje(look him up), or Idris Elba(less of a chance since he is already Heimdall in "Thor") for Tchalla. I think the world needs a strong, proud African superhero. Africa is always portrayed in such a terrible light, and I believe if Black Panther is successful, it may encourage more positive changes in Africa. Just my hope

#20 Posted by Hellos (8870 posts) - - Show Bio

Tchalla would be awsome. 
Honestly, they could not !@#$ up that movie if they tried.
#21 Posted by Augustus Freeman VI (218 posts) - - Show Bio

 Isaiah Mustafa or Idris Elba

#22 Posted by shawn87 (2798 posts) - - Show Bio

i actually dont think  Djimon Hounsou would be the best person for the live action film. He's a decent actor but i dont think he has what it takes. Keep him for the animated series and find someone else for the live action. Off the top of my head i would throw out Michael Jai White as my top candidate and possibly Idris Elba

#23 Posted by MisterMollusk (112 posts) - - Show Bio

Tyler Perry

#24 Posted by yankeemanf (192 posts) - - Show Bio

i say eitha will smith or djimon hounsou should be cast as black panther and they should make black panther an after the credits scene in the avengers

#25 Posted by xyberdawg (70 posts) - - Show Bio

I really enjoyed the BET TV Series. I know Wesley Snipes wanted to be T'Challa, but after being cast as Blade MARVEL didn't want anyone confused by him being both.

#26 Posted by Augustus Freeman VI (218 posts) - - Show Bio

Also check the article at syfy good list of potential actors
top 9

#27 Posted by mrmisanthrope (111 posts) - - Show Bio

Make him white.
Then watch all the people who claimed it was racist of people to be upset about the race swaps of Nick Fury, Wasp, Blue Beetle, The Question, Mr Terrific, Johnny/Jakeem Thunder, The Atom, etc suddenly all become hypocrites.
Seriously though, Hudlin ruined the Black Panther. He magnified every minor flaw T'Challa had, and turned him into a more racist version of Doctor Doom.

#28 Posted by imblackjames (365 posts) - - Show Bio
@norusdog:  lol NO WAY will is one of my favorite actors but he shouldnt play tchalla it should be the person who voiced him in the animated series or even better michael jai white
#29 Posted by darkcloakx (788 posts) - - Show Bio

i think it would be awesome to see a black panther movie he's awesome in the avengers's eatrth's mightiest heroes. he is quickly becoming one of my favorite besides hawkeye and hulk on the team. 
who should play him 
Chiwetel" Ejiofor as t'challa  he a good actor check out redbelt and serenity
noamie harris as storm  she a good a actress and is very pretty  woman 
michael jai white as luke cage  he can be tough guy check out blood and bone movie. 
other movies i like to see 
silver surfer, moon knight  and iron fist 
djimon honsou is too old  for the role he should play martian manhunter a.k.a john jones 
idris elba as spawn or bishop 

#30 Posted by SuperXAsh (569 posts) - - Show Bio

As long as it's NOT based on Reginald Hudlin's tenure. I'd rather see it based on the Christopher Priest/Peter B. Gills sorta work. Or at the very least that kind of attitude and approach.
As much as I like him, I don't think Will Smith has the look of T'Challa. I really don't know who has the look and the "chops" to be Black Panther.

#31 Posted by Chris2KLee (175 posts) - - Show Bio

Chiwetel Ejiofor. This is all you need.

#32 Posted by leokearon (1952 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't mind as long as  they don't  base it on Reginald Hudlin's Black Panther run
#33 Posted by GraphicCasualFreak (347 posts) - - Show Bio

I totally agree with the piece.  I would have REALLY liked to see the Animated/Motion Comic series get a life on television.  This just seems like its going to smack of Syfy movie of the week.

#34 Posted by Undeadpool (725 posts) - - Show Bio

Hudlin is, frankly, a hack. The man's never heard of subtlety, he doesn't even have a passing acquaintance with it. I'm hoping this movie more closely follows the Christopher Priest run.

#35 Edited by comicfetish (410 posts) - - Show Bio

 i vote for Robert Downey Jr as the Black Panther. he plays a good black guy
now, as far as how to make the movie, i suggest they watch Shaka Zulu and War of the Worlds for inspiration    

#36 Posted by JHags (51 posts) - - Show Bio

Admittedly, I haven't read Marvel in quite some time - so, I was really shocked to read about a 'Black Panther' movie. Did I miss something? Does Black Panther have a big following now?   Seems like there would be more popular characters that would produce higher grossing movies, even as sequels, in the Marvel fold.

#37 Posted by punchline (66 posts) - - Show Bio

hey i wouldn't mind a black panther movie. it is about time they stopped sticking to characters that the general public knows and giving the comic book fans what they want

#38 Posted by jkenley28 (156 posts) - - Show Bio

on the bottom-most illustration... the smling BP that resembles mr barak obama so much...

#39 Posted by ComicCrazy (1640 posts) - - Show Bio

I loved Djimon Hounsu as the voice and he was the guy I was always wanted to play Black Panther so I reckon he would be by far the best choice.
#40 Posted by blaakmawf (187 posts) - - Show Bio
@obscurefan said:
" Djimon Hounsou as Black Panther, they do that much right and I'll be sold on everything else. "
#41 Posted by Norusdog (205 posts) - - Show Bio
@G-Man said:
" @norusdog said:
" Will Smith as T'Challa (sp?)  make it happen "
Are you talking about's Will Smith? 

naturally, the one and only TRUE Will Smith
#42 Posted by Eyz (3187 posts) - - Show Bio

It's not that complicated!
Keep it pretty straightforward, and don't fall into the "Summer Blockbuster routine"!
Heck, well done it could even grab some awards!
(it's a great character, concept and story! and as quite a positive message,with showing "superheroes" in other places than NYC!)

#43 Posted by dondasch (931 posts) - - Show Bio

It could be me, but the character seems boring ?

#44 Posted by Jake Fury (21435 posts) - - Show Bio

Black Panther is an awesome character and very similar to Bruce Wayne in many ways.  
If there is a BP movie I'd like to see it with quite a bit of international flavor. Traveling the world, learning fighting styles as well as being educated in various universities, etc.
#45 Posted by HarlequinKiss (516 posts) - - Show Bio

Ahhh, I was wondering why I couldn't find Black Panther anywhere but online. I bought the DVD a couple days ago. The theme song is super catchy and the animation is actually pretty good considering it's in a motion-comic-type-style.

#46 Posted by JRMalamah (1 posts) - - Show Bio

Just a small note BP refered to as African American in the artile. BP is just African African.

#47 Posted by Billy Batson (59391 posts) - - Show Bio


#48 Posted by Video_Martian (5650 posts) - - Show Bio


#49 Posted by Doctor!!!!! (2135 posts) - - Show Bio

T'Challa needs a to look and be awsome, also have a rich african accent, of course.
#50 Posted by Static Shock (49099 posts) - - Show Bio

Michael Jai White. He's a decent actor and a martial artist. 
Adjusting his accent shouldn't be a problem...

This edit will also create new pages on Comic Vine for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Comic Vine users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.