Following Chadwick Boseman's death, Black Panther fans are paying tribute to their king and ensuring his memory lives on forever. On Aug. 28, the 43-year-old actor's Twitter account confirmed his death after a four-year battle with colon cancer. He's remembered for several important and memorable roles, including Thurgood Marshall in Marshall, Jackie Robinson in 42, and Stormin' Norman in Da 5 Bloods, and, of course, for his time as T'Challa/Black Panther in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Boseman first appeared in the MCU during Captain America: Civil War before stepping into the coveted suit for Black Panther. The Ryan Coogler-directed film shattered box office records and ushered in a much-needed standard of onscreen representation in the superhero world. Unsurprisingly, a Black Panther sequel was set into motion as part of Marvel's phase four, with a tentative May 6, 2022 release date. However, after news of Boseman's death, fans are asking that the role of King T'Challa not be recast.
According to Entertainment Weekly, production on the highly-anticipated sequel hasn't started yet. Boseman was expected to return as the lead. He also signed on to reprise his role for Marvel's What If . . . Disney+ series, although it's unclear if he got the chance to record his segment. Black Panther viewers hope the MCU will allow Boseman to keep T'Challa his legacy, and instead suggest Letitia Wright's Shuri becomes the leader of Wakanda.
Following Boseman's death, Marvel's president Kevin Feige issued a statement. "Chadwick's passing is absolutely devastating. He was our T'Challa, our Black Panther, and our dear friend. Each time he stepped on set, he radiated charisma and joy, and each time he appeared on screen, he created something truly indelible. He embodied a lot of amazing people in his work, and nobody was better at bringing great men to life. He was as smart and kind and powerful and strong as any person he portrayed. Now he takes his place alongside them as an icon for the ages. The Marvel Studios family deeply mourns his loss, and we are grieving tonight with his family."