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The movie industry has been bracing for the massive arrival of Black Panther for weeks now (if not months), but all that time still proved to not be enough. Final predictions still only was a $170 million take happening in the first three days, but the blockbuster instead went on to blow the doors off that number. It's been an amazing thing to watch - and now writer/director Ryan Coogler has offered his thoughts on the matter to his audience.
Black Panther became only the fifth film in history to make more than $200 million in its opening weekend, and judging by this open letter from Ryan Coogler it's a response that truly shocked the young filmmaker. The printed-out note was posted on the official Marvel Studios Twitter page, and it's really just a wonderful sentiment accented with the simple hashtag #WakandaForever.
As many have pointed out recently, Black Panther existed as a potential movie property for decades, with Wesley Snipes first making a run at getting it made back in the 1990s. Unfortunately, antiquated (if not straight-up racist) box office ideology stopped it from happening because it was feared that films with predominantly black casts can't sell overseas. This resulted in us having to wait until a full decade into the Marvel Cinematic Universe before actually seeing the project realized, but in a certain light that just makes all of the success that much more satisfying. It's not only a stunning win for the industry, but will almost certainly change things forever in a positive way.
There is, of course, a lot of love to be spread around in all of this, but deserving special attention above all is the 31-year-old Ryan Coogler. He made a stunning feature debut just a few years ago with 2013's Fruitvale Station, but now twice in a row has totally knocked it out of the park when given the opportunity to take on a legacy project (his second film being the Rocky spin-off Creed). He has quickly emerged as one of the most talented young filmmakers in the industry, and one can only imagine where he goes from here. Based on everything we've seen thus far, the man has a remarkable future ahead of him.
Black Panther may now only be into Day 5 of its release, but internationally it has already more than doubled its $200 million budget with a $426.8 million take. Given that it just broke a record for Monday ticket sales, there really is no telling at this point just how high it will ultimately soar, and what its final totals will be. For now we'll just reflect on Ryan Coogler's gratitude, and send a ton of our own back towards him for his amazing creation.
Black Panther is now in theaters worldwide.