It was said early on about Black Panther that the cast would be 90-percent African-American and that it would be "among the best ensembles" of any movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Kevin Feige definitely set the expectations high, but he and director Ryan Coogler seem to be delivering on those promises so far. Now it looks like yet another very encouraging actress may be joining the cast in the form of Emmy nominee Phylicia Rashad.
The potential casting didn't come from anyone official, like Marvel Studios or Ryan Coogler, but another new cast member seemingly spilled the beans. This is Us star Sterling K. Brown recently landed a role for himself in Black Panther and in an interview with The Undefeated, he named dropped Phylicia Rashad. Here is what he had to say.
"I just worked with Chad on a film called Marshall, about Thurgood Marshall. He's such a talented human being and a deep soul. He's the perfect personality to fully inhabit T'Challa. So, to rejoin him, and to work with Academy Award winners...to be with Michael B. Jordan after the incredible work he's done in Creed. Danai Gurira, Phylicia Rashad, Forest Whitaker, like, it's embarrassing."
The Undefeated went back and retracted her name from the interview, which would seem to indicate that Sterling K. Brown wasn't supposed to reveal that Phylicia Rashad is going to be in Black Panther. It is possible that he was mistaken, but that seems less likely. It also would make sense that she would be in the movie, since she worked with director Ryan Coogler and star Michael B. Jordan previously on Creed. Plus, she is very much in line with the talent Marvel Studios seems to be going after for Black Panther, which in a word is excellent.
In addition to having Chadwick Boseman playing the title character in the movie, who recently made an impactful debut as T'Challa in Captain America: Civil War, Marvel is going after top talent while staying true to their word of casting heavy on the African-American side. Outside of the previously mentioned cast members, Black Panther will feature Danai Gurira, Forest Whitaker, Lupita Nyong'o, Angela Bassett, Florence Kasumba, Daniel Kaluuya and Winston Duke. As impressive as that list is, Martin Freeman will also be reprising his role from Captain America: Civil War and it is expected that Andy Serkis will be featured as Ulysses Klaw, who he played in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
It isn't clear who Phylicia Rashad would be playing or how big her role would be, but having an Emmy-nominated actress who starred in projects like The Cosby Show, For Colored Girls and the aforementioned Creed can only benefit Black Panther. The movie is supposed to be going into production soon and is easily one of the most anticipated upcoming Marvel movies at this point. So hopefully Sterling K. Brown wasn't mistaken and this turns out to be true. Black Panther is set for release on February 16, 2018.