Black Panther Lands This Is Us Star Sterling K. Brown
Emmy winner Sterling K. Brown has joined the cast of Marvel Studios' Black Panther in the role of N'Jobu, a figure from T'Challa's past. Directed by Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station, Creed), Black Panther stars Chadwick Boseman in the title role alongside Michael B. Jordan, Forest Whitaker, Lupita Nyong'o, Angela Bassett, Danai Gurira, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke and Florence Kasumba. The film arrives in theaters on February 16, 2018, going up against 20th Century Fox's Larrikins. This superhero adventure is also positioned between Fifty Shades Freed (February 9, 2018) and Pacific Rim 2 (February 23, 2018).
The brief Marvel Entertainment press release doesn't mention that this character N'Jobu is not a character found in the Black Panther comic books. It's possible that this name is actually some sort of a code for a different character who is already established, that Marvel wants to keep under wraps at this time. Regardless of who he's playing, the actor joins a growing cast that also includes Letitia Wright as Serita. It remains to be seen how many more major characters need to be cast.
Back in November, a casting call revealed that the production is seeking clean cut men and women between 30 and 50 to play "CIA Agent Types with weapons experience." Some believe this casting call hints that T'challa is returning to America at some point in the story. Lupita N'yongo, who plays Nakia, a member of the Dora Milaje, revealed the plot follows Black Panther after his leadership is "threatened by two foes who come together" and that Black Panther gets the "help of the C.I.A. and the Dora Milaje to try and defeat the enemy." It was never confirmed who the "two foes" are, or if Black Panther will return to America, but these enemies could be Michael B. Jordan's Erik Killmonger and Andy Serkis' Ulysses Klaue, who we first saw in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Back in April, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige confirmed that Black Panther begins shooting in early 2017, which means that filming may begin any day now. Chadwick Boseman also teased this fall that the story is much darker, while shedding light on how T'challa will rule his homeland of Wakanda. In Captain America: Civil War, T'challa's father T'chaka was killed, with T'challa now taking the throne and ruling Wakanda. Hopefully we'll get more story details when production begins, presumably later this month.
Ryan Coogler directs Black Panther from a script he co-wrote with Joe Robert Cole. This film will actually serve as a reunion for Sterling K. Brown, who won an Emmy this year for his portrayal of Christopher Darden on FX's The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story. Joe Robert Cole served as a staff writer on the show, landing an Emmy nomination himself for his writing work. Sterling K. Brown also stars on another hit show this year, NBC's freshman drama series This Is Us. Hopefully we'll have more details on Black Panther in the very near future.