Marvel’s Black Panther is getting a Kingdom of Wakanda tie-in series on Disney+. Black Panther and Black Panther II director Ryan Coogler is attached to the Wakanda series, as part of the five-year deal between his Proximity Media company and Disney. Coogler has released a statement, saying in part that “It’s an honor to be partnering with The Walt Disney Company. Working with them on Black Panther was a dream come true. As avid consumers of television, we couldn’t be happier to be launching our television business with Bob Iger, Dana Walden and all the amazing studios under the Disney umbrella.”
In his continuing statement, Ryan Coogler teased Marvel’s Black Panther fans with what’s to come:
“We look forward to learning, growing, and building a relationship with audiences all over the world through the Disney platforms. We are especially excited that we will be taking our first leap with Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso and their partners at Marvel Studios where we will be working closely with them on select MCU shows for Disney+. We’re already in the mix on some projects that we can’t wait to share,” stated Ryan Coogler on behalf of Proximity Media.”
(Photo: Marvel Studios)Disney Executive Chairman Bob Iger released his own statement, saying: “Ryan Coogler is a singular storyteller whose vision and range have made him one of the standout filmmakers of his generation. With Black Panther, Ryan brought a groundbreaking story and iconic characters to life in a real, meaningful and memorable way, creating a watershed cultural moment. We’re thrilled to strengthen our relationship and look forward to telling more great stories with Ryan and his team.”
Marvel and Disney have been in something of a predicament since Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman died last fall. Boseman’s death of so sudden and unexpected that it left the studio scrambling for what to do about Black Panther II – and the franchise as a whole. Marvel Studios has confirmed Boseman will not be recast in the next Black Panther movie, leading to all kinds of fan theories about how the MCU will explain T’Challa’s absence. This Kingdom of Wakanda series adds a new wrinkle, as it arguably offers some of the supporting characters from Black Panther a bigger venue to shine in, making us wonder all over again what the sequel film will choose to focus on.
In the comics, a similar kind of spinoff idea was attempted with the 2017 series Black Panther: World of Wakanda, but it only lasted six issues before cancellation. Hopefully, the TV spinoff fares better – which should be easy since the larger ensemble of Black Panther stars (Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright) were all breakouts in their respective own rights. An anthology-style show about each character dealing with T’Challa being gone would be a big storyline event for Marvel, the actors, and fans.
Marvel’s Black Panther II is scheduled to hit theaters on July 8, 2022.