Despite earlier reports and images, Black Panther, played by Chadwick Boseman, is neither Team Cap nor Team Stark in ‘Captain America: Civil War’.  True, he has pits his talons against Cap’s shield, but that’s because his true mission is to capture The Winter Soldier, a.k.a. Cap’s former best friend Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) because of something the former brain-washed assassin did or was framed to have done.

Black Panther is unique among the Marvel super heroes, in that he is a political figure, the Prince (or King, depending on the timeframe) of the African nation Wakanda, the only source on Earth of the impenetrable metal Vibranium, that which makes up Captain America’s shield.  As such, expect his film to also have a unique feel.

As Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige explains:

“The 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 is 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.”

‘Black Panther’ was originally slated to be released on July 6, 2018 but was bumped up to February 16, 2018.  (‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ was slotted into the July 6 date.)  Now it’s clear that the move was for two reasons– one, to make room for the ‘Ant-Man’ sequel, which wasn’t earlier expected; and two, because story-wise, ‘Black Panther’ somehow sets up ‘Infinity War’.

It was hinted that ‘Doctor Strange’ somehow also plays into ‘Infinity War’ with the implication being that Strange’s Eye of Agamotto may house one of the prized Infinity Stones, most likely the Time Stone.  If ‘Black Panther’ also connects, it may involve the final gem, the Soul Stone.  The six Stones are needed to complete Thanos’ Infinity Gauntlet, which will grant him supreme power.  Purely speculation, but the Soul Stone may explain why Wakanda is the only place on Earth where Vibranium is found.

As for the cast of ‘Black Panther’, Feige stated that it will have a ‘primarily African-American cast’ but two non-African-American… actually non-American in any way… cast members are expected to be Andy Serkis as Ulysses Klau a.k.a. sonic super villain Klaw and Martin Freeman, whose role in ‘Civil War’ is still unrevealed, but who some are speculating may be Everett Ross, a character from the comics who is an expert on Wakanda and who Klaw uses for information to invade the sovereign nation.

At any rate, Boseman as Black Panther and Freeman will make their Marvel Cinematic Universe debuts this spring in ‘Captain America: Civil War.’  ‘Doctor Strange’ starring Benedict Cumberbatch arrives this fall.

Following that, the Marvel Universe will continue unfolding in:

  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017
  • (Untitled) Spider-Man – July 28, 2017 (joint project with Sony)
  • Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017
  • Black Panther – February 16, 2018
  • Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 – May 4, 2018
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018
  • Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019
  • Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2 – May 3, 2019
  • Inhumans – July 12, 2019

Marvel has already locked in three additional releases for May 1, July 10 and November 6, 2020, but those projects remain unannounced.

How do you think ‘Black Panther’ will lead into ‘Infinity War’?

Source: Screen Rant