Spoilers ahead for Black Panther 2.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe provided plenty of surprises during Phase Four, both on the small and silver screens. Throughout the last slate of content, perhaps the most highly anticipated upcoming Marvel movie was none other than Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The acclaimed blockbuster is still making a ton of money at the box office, and brought the women of the franchise into the spotlight. This includes the great Angela Bassett, who recently recalled being “mortified” over Queen Ramonda’s story in Black Panther 2.
While Angela Bassett played a supporting role in the first Black Panther, the sequel gave her some super strong material to work with. But her character Queen Ramonda was also killed off at the end of the movie’s second act, making way for an all-out war between Wakanda and Talokan. The Oscar nominated actress recently spoke to Variety about her experience working on Wakanda Forever, and specifically her thoughts on the death sequence. In Bassett’s words:
There you have it. It sounds like Angela Bassett was upset about Queen Ramonda’s death in Black Panther 2 just like the fandom. And as she explains, she did make her concerns known, and tried to advocate for her signature MCU character. Although in the end this was fruitless, and sacrifice saving Riri Williams informs the movie’s third act. What’s more, Shuri is even able to see her in the Ancestral Plane during her final battle with Namor.
Angela Bassett’s comments about Black Panther: Wakanda Forever make a great deal of sense, especially the part about receiving a “gift” before Ramona’s earth. Ryan Coogler’s franchise has been universally acclaimed, and she was no doubt happy to have an expanded role in the sequel. Which may be why she protested against Queen Ramonda being killed off in the emotional sequel. Luckily no one is really ever gone in Wakandan culture.
Overall, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was a meditation on grief. We watched as the movie’s characters attempted to move on after the death of T’Challa, including Shuri, Ramonda, and Nakia. That sense of grief is also what ultimately Shuri to Namor, and helped her give him mercy in that final battle. And that story is indeed benefitted by Ramonda’s sacrifice.
It should be fascinating to see where Ryan Coogler takes the story of Black Panther next. It looks like M’Baku might be the new King, although Nakia’s son Prince T’Challa could also have a claim to the throne. The leadership of the Dora Milaje has also shifted to Ayo, while Okoye and Nakia have become Midnight Angels.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is still in theaters now, remaining #1 at the box office. The next installment in the MCU is Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania on February 17th, 2023. In the meantime, check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your trips to the movies in the New Year. Angela Bassett herself has two projects coming down the line.
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Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.