With Black Panther: Wakanda Forever filming as we speak, you’d think by now we’d have firm word on the casting for the flick. Of course, there are still lingering questions out there around how they will deal with the tragic deal of Chadwick Boseman, but other questions still remain as well. For instance, what is happening with Letitia Wright in this sequel? The rumor mill has been fierce over the last many months and from the latest piece of casting news, it looks like Wright might be on the outs. According to TMZ, Letitia Wright is possibly being recast in the franchise.
The most recent announcement that I May Destroy You’s Michaela Coel had joined the cast appeared to just be a cool addition to the crew that’s returning for the second film in the franchise. But TMZ is speculating that there is more going on here than meets the public relations eye. Namely, this move to bring in Coel is a direct 1:1 move to replace Letitia Wright in the main cast. While the Black Panther and Marvel folks haven’t made this announcement in any formal way, there’s at least some background that could make the claim have some validity.
For starters, Letitia Wright has been at the center of some controversy over the last year or so because of social media comments she made regarding the Covid-19 pandemic and the vaccination efforts as well. This landed her in the internet crosshairs, with some calling for her removal from the next Black Panther movie. Marvel never made an announcement in this regard, but Wright did end up deleting her social media accounts in the wake of the backlash.
Before any of the internet dust-up, it was rumored that Letitia Wright would actually be taking up the mantle of the next Black Panther in the franchise. This was, of course, in the wake of the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman last summer. Though devastating, the studio intended to move on with the franchise and have another character take on the suit as the leader of Wakanda. It was thought Wright’s Shuri would be that person. But that was cast into doubt when she began to receive backlash around her social media postings.
Since then, there has been relative radio silence about the plan for this next film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. While the studio notes have Letitia Wright returning as well as Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, and Winston Duke, there’s no word around how any of them will fit into the plot. The same can be said for Coel whose role is, for now, undisclosed. This is all while the flick is actually shooting, so the mystery levels are pretty high around this one.
Letitia Wright appeared in the original Black Panther and also reprised her Shuri role in Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame. She’s also in post-production on a number of different movies like Surrounded, Silent Twin, and Aisha. Plus there’s the completed, but much-maligned Death on the Nile which might never see the light of day. Time will tell if she still has a place in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Right now that is far from certain.