Marvel's Phase Three is shaping up to be absolutely huge. We'll get 10 movies arriving between this year and 2019, starting with Captain America: Civil War and Doctor Strange, and ending with Avengers: Infinity War - Part II and Inhumans. In between these adventures will be a slew of stand alone movies, including Black Panther. The title character of which, played by Chadwick Boseman, is being introduced in Captain America: Civil War this summer. While we don't know when production will begin quite yet on Black Panther, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has confirmed to Empire Magazine that long rumored Ryan Coogler will direct.
The news doesn't come as too much of a surprise, since we reported last month that Ryan Coogler, who has been receiving rave review for Creed, was close to signing on to direct Black Panther. Kevin Feige also teased last week that Black Panther is quite important in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, explaining how it will connect to Avengers: Infinity War Part I. Here's what the producer had to say in his interview with Empire.
"This one is important. Not only do you get an unbelievable lead character, but you also get all of Wakanda which is a whole new setting and culture to explore. It's a big geo-political action adventure that focuses on the family and royal struggle of T'Challa in Wakanda, and what it means to be a king. T'Challa's story is very important to us as it links to the next Avengers films, which is why we brought it forward."
Chadwick Boseman is the only cast member attached to star in Black Panther, but a rumor surfaced in April that the studio was seeking Ernie Hudson to play T'Challa's father, T'Chaka. Rumors have also surfaced that T'Chaka could either die in Captain America: Civil War, or pass on his throne of Wakanda to his son at some point in the movie, but that has not been confirmed. Of course, the producer wouldn't shed any light on how Black Panther leads into Avengers: Infinity War Part I, but he did also add that the production will feature a primarily African-American cast.
Joe Robert Cole (Amber Lake) recently came aboard to write the screenplay, although it isn't known when principal photography may begin. Doctor Strange is currently in production, with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 commencing principal photography in early 2016 and Thor: Ragnarok eyeing a summer 2016 filming start in Australia. It's possible that Black Panther could either start production in late 2016 or early 2017.
It still hasn't been confirmed if Andy Serkis' Ulysses Klaue, who was introduced in this summer's Avengers: Age of Ultron, will return in Black Panther, but it certainly seems likely, given his ties to Wakanda in the movie and in the comic books. Black Panther will only be the 29-year-old Ryan Coogler's third feature film, following 2013's Fruitvale Station and his hit follow-up Creed, which is still playing in theaters. Are you looking forward to seeing what Ryan Coogler can do with Black Panther?