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Black Panther 2: Ryan Coogler is back at work and everything else we know

New villains, new love interests and more may liven things up in Wakanda when the Marvel sequel finally comes out.

Marvel Studios

Wakanda forever! Since Black Panther proved such a blockbuster, a sequel was inevitable, and Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige confirmed one back in 2018.

In June 2019, Feige told BET that returning director Ryan Coogler, who also co-wrote the first film's screenplay, was just sitting down at his keyboard and any talk of plot was premature. Yes, that includes the delicious rumor that Michael B. Jordan will be somehow returning as Erik Killmonger, even though that might take some doing, considering what happened to him in the first film. For now, we'll just have to mull the many ways it COULD happen.

Coogler's pretty good about keeping things secretive, but as information about Marvel's Black Panther 2 rolls out, we'll collect it here, and try to separate the facts from the rumors and theories. We'll update this page as we learn more.

Release date

When Feige confirmed Black Panther 2, telling Entertainment Weekly, "we absolutely will do (a sequel)," he didn't give many specifics, and certainly not a release date. But one look at the jam-packed Marvel movie schedule gives some clues. Captain Marvel and Avengers 4 are coming in 2019, and that's way too early to film a second trip to Wakanda anyway. And a 2020 release looked out of the question until Guardians of the Galaxy 3 was seemingly shelved after the Disney/Marvel drama with James Gunn.

Striking while the hero is hot is a great idea, but our guess is that 2021 is likely the earliest we'll see Black Panther 2, whatever it ends up being named. Marvel still has an open date for an unnamed movie on Feb. 18, 2022; almost exactly four years after the first Black Panther, which would give the series a nice symmetry.

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Danai Gurira (Okoye) on set with director Ryan Coogler.

Matt Kennedy/Marvel Studios

In the director's chair: Ryan Coogler again

 Was this ever a question? Feige has confirmed that the acclaimed Coogler is back again for a second go-round.

Who will be King?

"We have ideas and a pretty solid direction on where we want to head with the second one," Feige told EW. Of course, he's not saying what those ideas are, but fans might look to the comics for especially popular storylines. 

"Panther has been around for more than half a century in the comic books and there are many, many stories to tell," Feige told Variety. Panther has a rich history. He's fought the KKK, battled a coup from within Wakanda, dealt with a Skrull invasion, and saved Queen Ramonda from a white supremacist. Many of the stories from the comics would translate well to the big screen.

Wakanda Forever, or at least awhile

We can guess where the film will be set. In finally showing T'Challa's homeland of Wakanda on screen, Black Panther handed Marvel a new and creative setting not just for Black Panther solo movies, but for visits from his colleagues in the Avengers. Almost the entire third act of Avengers: Infinity War was set in the fictional African nation. The sequel's bound to go back.

"Anchor point is a good way of (describing Wakanda), particularly as some of our other anchor points, Asgard for instance, are gone," Feige told EW. Wakanda's a fascinating land that fans have only begun to experience, and Marvel's well aware the country has many more secrets to unfold.

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Who'll be back for the sequel? 

If you're all caught up with the Marvel universe, you know that even though T'Challa was zapped away in Avengers: Infinity War, he's back again thanks to the events of Avengers: Endgame.


Naturally, nothing is confirmed as far as casting goes, but as we just mentioned, you can bet your Vibranium holdings Chadwick Boseman will be back to play him, and likely most of the first film's cast will also return. Here's a reminder of who they are:

Michael B. Jordan played Killmonger in Black Panther.

Disney/Marvel

What about the villain? 

Even though Feige said it was too early to comment on Killmonger, let's rehash, because he was indeed a great villain in the first Black Panther movie. His fate seems pretty final, but you never know in the Marvel universe. Kendrick Lamar, who curated and produced the Black Panther soundtrack, has said he'd love to play Killmonger or someone like him

One rumor from an unnamed source tells Metro UK that filmmakers are "yet to decide if Michael B. Jordan will return in some capacity but if he doesn't it's likely [Donald Glover] may play some kind of villain."

Coogler told Yahoo Movies he had interest in another Panther villain, Kraven the Hunter, but it sounds as if the Sony series of movies has plans for Kraven, likely in a Spider-Man movie.

"I've always loved Kraven the Hunter in almost every iteration," Coogler said. "So there was a moment -- 'Can I grab Kraven?' -- and they were 'Nah, you don't have Kraven.' He was one where I thought 'Oh, man.' But I don't even know if he would have worked in the movie we ended up with, this was the early days."

That's OK. Black Panther has plenty of other juicy villains, including Doctor Doom, Achebe, King Cadaver and others.

Storm brewing 

In the comics, Black Panther marries Storm of the X-Men, and now that the Disney-Fox merger is official, the X-Men could enter the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which just celebrated its 10th anniversary. Storm could set off some thunder and lightning in Wakanda and threaten Nakia and T'Challa's relationship.

Who's Storm? She's an Africa-born mutant raised in America and credited as the first major female character of African descent in comics. Her powers include flight and the ability to control weather, and she's an expert markswoman, thief and skilled fighter. Halle Berry has played her in four films. In the comics, Storm and Black Panther are childhood sweethearts who marry and eventually divorce. In the movies, marriage is likely out of the question, but romance is always on the table.

More than one sequel?

With the enormous success of Black Panther, it seems safe to say there'll be as many sequels as fans are willing to watch. Producer Nate Moore says the Wakanda characters will show up in other films as well. 

"Panther obviously is a big swing that we hope to continue through many sequels and take some of these characters and put them in other franchises because I do think there's a way to cross-pollinate in an interesting way," he told Screen Rant.

This piece was originally published May 7, 2018, and is updated frequently with new rumors and information.

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