Winston Duke Teases Expanded Black Panther 2 Role For M’Baku

By Nathan Kamal | Published

Winston Duke Black Panther 2

Winston Duke was first introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as an antagonist to Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa, but showed himself to be a heroic figure by the end of the first Black Panther. According to the actor, we will actually be seeing more of Winston Duke’s M’Baku in Black Panther 2, in a more expanded role. In an interview with Screen Rant, Winston Duke described M’Baku as being a full-fledged member of Wakanda in Black Panther 2 (formally titled Black Panther: Wakanda Forever) and his Jabari tribe as having fully entered into the rest of the world. 

In the interview, Winston Duke describes how both M’Baku and the Jabari tribe as a whole have been changed by the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. In particular, he alludes to the events of the Snap (in which Josh Brolin’s Thanos disappeared half the population of the universe for five years) making it impossible for the Jabari to exist in their formerly isolationist lifestyle. It will be interesting to see how Winston Duke’s character fits into the plot of Black Panther 2. The recently released trailer for the movie makes it clear that (true to Kevin Feige’s promise not to recast T’Challa after the tragically young death of Chadwick Boseman due to colon cancer) the Black Panther is dead in the MCU, and there will be a need for a new heir to the role. 

While the trailer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever ended with a tantalizing shot of the titular hero’s claws, we do not yet know who might be taking over the role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Winston Duke’s M’Baku was offered the role by T’Challa’s family in the first Black Panther movie when they thought he had died at the hands of Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger, which he turned down. But perhaps Winston Duke would have to reconsider now that T’Challa actually is dead in Black Panther 2. There is a strong possibility that ​​Letitia Wright’s Shuri taking the role, as she is a member of the Wakandan royal family. However, if that is one of the qualifications, we will put down a strong vote for Angela Bassett as Queen Mother Ramonda, who would be a very amazing Black Panther.

It has also been revealed that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will introduce Namor to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, portrayed by Mexican actor Tenoch Huerta. That gives us a lot of opportunity for a Winston Duke vs Namor showdown in Black Panther 2; given that M’Baku was shown to be only outmatched by T’Challa as a warrior, having him in combat against the underwater king would be a good way to demonstrate his strength and ferocity. But we would also be interested in seeing Winston Duke having to interact more with the politics and society of Wakanda in Black Panther 2, removed from his previous role as a surly mountain king. But we will also just be excited to see whatever Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has to offer.