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Black Panther 2: Everything We Know About The Original Storyline

"Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" debuts in theaters to wrap the Marvel Cinematic Universe's exciting and inclusive Phase 4. The latest installment also pays tribute to Chadwick Boseman, who tragically died on August 28th, 2020 from colon cancer. Because of this tragedy, the stunning and heartbreaking sequel underwent several changes after the first record-breaking "Black Panther" film. 

Writer and director Ryan Coogler has been open about the moving process behind developing the highly anticipated sequel. He and his fellow castmates took ample time to grieve and rework "Wakanda Forever" before the official release. This unimaginable loss is reflected in the film's final form that honors the outstanding actor and his legacy as the Black Panther. 

"Wakanda Forever" passes the mantle of the iconic hero in a surprising and refreshing way. The nation of Wakanda finds itself both in mourning and under attack in an enthralling film bursting with action and heartwarming character moments. As Coogler told various news outlets, the final script for the "Black Panther" sequel has a similar foundation to the original featuring Boseman. However, after his untimely death, a few alterations had to be made, which we've rounded up for you below. 

Black Panther 2 originally featured grief in a different way

Ryan Coogler and co-writer Joe Robert Cole, took a different approach with the first iteration of "Black Panther 2" by having T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) grappling with his own grief. When Thanos (Josh Brolin) snaps away half of the universe in "Avengers: Infinity War," T'Challa's Black Panther is one of many devastating takings. His disappearance left Wakanda's throne empty for five years, which the sequel's original plans directly address.

Coogler told Inverse, "The tone was going to be similar. The character was going to be grieving the loss of time, you know, coming back after being gone for five years. As a man with so much responsibility to so many, coming back after a forced five years away, that's what the film was tackling. He was grieving time he couldn't get back. Grief was a big part of it." T'Challa's noble character would've been deeply upset at this, especially after learning Shuri (Letitia Wright) also vanished. 

T'Challa's time blipped away also leaves Wakanda vulnerable to outside forces that could intrude and attack, seeking their precious and versatile Vibranium. Without the sacred herb (destroyed in the first film by Michael B. Jordan's Killmonger), Wakanda is unable to crown another Black Panther as the nation's protector. This places even more guilt on T'Challa when he returns, which Lupita Nyong'o told The Hollywood Reporter: "It was a massive movie but also simultaneously a character study that delved deeply into his psyche and situation."

Namor and the Talokan were always the antagonists

As Ryan Coogler told Variety, the original script for the Black Panther sequel was over 300 pages. He also heartbreakingly shared that Chadwick Boseman never read the next adventure due to his life-threatening illness. If he had been able to experience such an opportunity, he would've enjoyed the inevitable showdown between the Black Panther and Namor. 

Angela Basset (T'Challa's mother and Queen of Wakanda, Ramonda) shared with IGN that the script has seen at least five revisions. This process is an enormous testament to the crucial inclusion of the Black Panther's longtime comic book adversary: Namor the Sub-mariner (Tenoch Huerta). Coogler revealed to Inverse that he always intended to include the aquatic foe. 

He stated Namor "was always the antagonist" and then continued by sharing: "There were other characters, for sure, that we considered including." Namor wages war on the nation of Wakanda for revenge over the invaluable element Vibranium, flooding the kingdom in the process. Coogler underlined his importance by reiterating, "Namor was always there." His actions devastate Wakanda in numerous ways, birthing a vengeful new Black Panther with a powerful storyline layered in nuance and depth.