Black Panther isn’t just Marvel Studios’ golden children, it is also the pride of the African continent. When the first movie came out in 2018, it didn’t have so much in terms of fanfare on the African continent or, even, many African artists who worked on the project, but it was loved and celebrated nonetheless. In Marvel Studios’ defense, they probably didn’t expect it to gain as much traction as it did. Now, the sequel is here, all the wrongs are being consciously made right. There’s the extensive collaboration with musical creatives of African origin as seen in the official soundtrack album and, then, there’s the West-Africa premiere held in Lagos, Nigeria, the first of its kind for Marvel Studios.
Trust your favourite stars to show up and shut down playing dress up on the red carpets. Alongside the stars of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the night was colorful and fun-filled.
Director Ryan Coogler at a special press event in Lagos hours before the premiere event proper revealed the reason why Nigeria was selected to play host to the West Africa premiere of the anticipated sequel, stating that Lagos had a lot of history and cultural significance for filmmakers.
‘‘If you know, like African American history, it’s tough for us to trace our genetic lineage due to some purposeful things that happened to us during the transatlantic slave trade.
So one of the things I spoke with the late Chadwick Boseman about when we first met and were getting ready to put his movie on was that he put me up on something called africanancestry.com, another company I like.
It was specific about finding out where you have a heritage to know. So Chad had done his own, and he explained how it is done. So when I did mine, it came back as having lineage to a part of Cameroon, but mainly Yoruba lineage. It was something that I held on to and always wanted to know, to travel to Nigeria for that reason.”
The filmmaker went ahead to state that “different parts of Africa influenced the film; however, the Nigerian culture exudes a specific energy that is hard to ignore.”
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever premieres in theatres worldwide on November 11, 2022.