Since the unfortunate death of actor Chadwick Boseman, Marvel Studios has maintained that his character King T’Challa in Black Panther would not be recast, doubling down earlier last year to say that there also won’t be CG scenes of Boseman in the franchise’s upcoming sequel. While the company has explained that these decisions were made to respect the late actor and what he brought to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, fans are now petitioning Marvel instead recast Boseman’s character for exactly the same reason: to honor him.
The petition was started by a user named E-Man’s Movie Reviews, who explained his rationale over on the movement’s page on Change.org. “If Marvel Studios removes T’Challa, it would be at the expense of the audiences (especially Black boys and men) who saw themselves in him,” the author writes. “That also includes the millions of fans who were inspired by the character as well. By not recasting, it could stifle the opportunity for one of the most popular, leading Black superheroes to add on to their legacy. The #1 way to kill a legend, is to stop telling their story.”
He continued to point out that the petition isn’t trying to replace Boseman, but instead respect his work and continue his legacy: “#RecastTChalla is not a call to replace Chadwick Boseman. (No one could ever do that.) It is not asking for an immediate replacement either. Nor is this calling for the prevention of other characters to take up the mantle of Black Panther like Shuri or anyone else. This petition is merely asking to continue the portrayal of T’Challa in the MCU. #RecastTChalla is a call to fulfill the role that Chadwick Boseman worked so hard for the world to see.”
For now, Marvel and Disney have not made any official response to the petition.
Elsewhere in entertainment, a mid-season trailer has just dropped for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.