A Marvel superhero movie produced and distributed by Walt Disney Motion Pictures, Black Panther was written and directed by Ryan Coogler. The film, released on February 16, 2018, was an instant hit with viewers, raking in over a billion dollars at the global box office with a budget of $200 million. The movie is 134 minutes long, and its revenue has made it the highest-grossing North American release of 2018 and the second highest global release behind fellow Marvel product Avengers: Infinity War. Black Panther is the first Marvel film with a predominantly African American cast.
The idea for a Black Panther film adaptation had been discussed by various studios on and off for many years. As early as 1992, star actor Wesley Snipes attempted to facilitate an adaptation starring himself, but the project stalled and was never produced. Interest was rekindled by the recent explosion in popularity of comic book films and Marvel Studios announced its intention to produce the film in October 2014, casting star Chadwick Boseman several months later. Boseman first appeared as T’Challa in a supporting role in Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War (2016).
Marvel initially offered the project to acclaimed director Ava Duvernay, but she declined. Marvel turned to Ryan Coogler, coming off the widely praised and successful Creed (2015), and he signed on to direct in 2016.
Black Panther was released on February 16, 2018 after years of great anticipation, and the reception was very strong. Fandango reported that pre-ticket sales for the movie were the highest for any Marvel movie in history, and it scored a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics have praised the film both for its impressively designed action sequences and its commentary on racial politics.
Boseman reprised his role in Avengers: Infinity War later in 2018, and will do so again in the as-of-yet untitled Black Panther sequel. That film is expected to be released in 2020 or 2021, with actor Donald Glover in “informal talks” with Coogler to play an unidentified villain role. Glover and his brother Stephen also contributed minor rewrites to the Black Panther script, which was primarily written by Coogler and Joe Robert Cole.
No major awards have been given out since Black Panther’s release, but some awards pundits expect it to contend for Academy Awards and other prizes later this year.