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Since the Disney-Fox merger finally became official as of a couple weeks ago, the mutants of X-Men could join the ranks of the MCU someday. Among the many potential pairings that have been suggested among fans between Avengers and X-Men is the striking romance between Black Panther and Storm but according to Dark Phoenix’s Storm actress, Alexandra Shipp, just because Disney can now make this happen, it doesn’t mean they should. In her words:
No! No, I don’t think Storm needs T’Challa, and I think she needs her own movie! It doesn’t have to be me, it just needs to be made. A woman does not need a man in order to give her validity and she has also been around longer than him.
Looks like Chadwick Boseman T’Challa is getting the cold shoulder from the X-Men actress, but for a valid, industry-forward reason. During a roundtable interview at WonderCon (via LRM Online,) Alexandra Shipp showed her distaste with her character’s future plotline to revolve around a romance between Storm and Black Panther because she thinks the weather-controlling hero needs her own movie. Though it should be noted that Black Panther has been around since 1966, and Storm debuted on the printed page nine years later.
It’s a tiresome plotline for the women of Marvel Comics to be consistently defined as the men in their lives, one that Captain Marvel recently made a conscience effort to steer away from. Alexandra Shipp previously echoed this statement last year when asked about her ideas for a spinoff for the powerful mutant character with these comments:
I just want there to be a message of ‘this woman doesn’t need a man.’ Just one movie where a woman doesn’t need a man, really.
However, with a the addition of the X-Men to the MCU imminent, T’Challa and Ororo’s romance would be an intriguing way for the two teams to intersect and form an alliance. In the comic books, the two meet as children when Storm flees Cairo following her parents’ deaths and comes across Wakanda. Storm rescues T’Challa from being kidnapped and a love story ignites. When they are older, the pair get married with both the X-Men and Avengers in attendance though it’s a short-lived union.
Six years into it, they were put at odds for the Avengers vs. X-Men event. When her team of mutants do damage to Wakanda, Black Panther blames her for it and they get a divorce. Seeing some of this drama play out would certainly be interesting as the hero becomes more prevalent in the MCU and the possibility of the addition of X-Men in the MCU will likely be tinkered with.
Us’ Evan Alex even recently volunteered himself up to play the son of Black Panther and Ororo in a Black Panther sequel to Vulture after playing the son to Black Panther’s M’Baku, Winston Duke, in the Jordan Peele horror film. To Alexandra Shipp, Storm’s addition to the MCU would just place her even farther into the background then she already is in the current X-Men franchise. Here’s what she said:
I would and I wouldn’t (like it), because Storm barely has anything to say as it is. I don’t know about you all (other actors) but like we never talk. So it would be really nice if we weren’t piled into yet another jam packed cast, in which you only see me in the back of the shot like fucking sasquatch.
The actress certainly isn’t afraid to tell it like it is but she’s right. As is, the upcoming Avengers: Endgame film looks so packed with characters that some will likely have one or two lines. Add in a crew of mutants and there would be so many heroes on the big screen that there just wouldn’t be a way to do each of the characters justice.
At WonderCon, 20 minutes of X-Men: Dark Phoenix footage was also showcased ahead of the film’s release on June 7. What do you think about Alexandra Shipp’s comments? Would you like to see a Storm solo flick or her romance with T’Challa on screen? What about how the Avengers and X-Men could share the big screen? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!