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Morris Chestnut As Black Panther? Probably Not…

Morris Chestnut As Black Panther? Probably Not...

I’ve been avoiding this all afternoon/evening, but it continues to follow me everywhere (readers emailing it to me, as well as posts on my Twitter and Facebook feeds). So I’m just going to, at least, mention it, and you guys can feel free to run with it or not.

In short, fanboys and fangirls are all abuzz over a Facebook and Twitter post Morris Chestnut is said to have made on both social media sites earlier today: he posted the below cover of an issue of the Black Panther comic book, along with the words:

It’s time to get familiar with the Black Panther character.

It didn’t take long for speculation to begin, as several film and comic book sites picked up Chestnut’s posts, and ran with the speculation, wondering whether he was hinting that he would be playing the character in a movie, or was maybe screen-testing for it, which would mean that Marvel was moving forward with a Black Panther movie finally, etc, etc, etc…

Chestnut has since deleted both the Twitter and Facebook posts, so, unfortunately, you can’t see them for yourselves, nor read the comment threads that followed. Of course, some question why he would have deleted the posts if there wasn’t something more to them than what he wrote.

I should also note that Chestnut hasn’t posted anything since he deleted both posts. He likely deleted them in the first place because of all the speculation that followed. So, some would argue that if none of it was true, he’d have posted a follow-up message saying just that. Surely he was aware that by posting something so vague, yet suggestive, especially as public discussions are being had about a Black Panther movie, he would’ve known what kind of a stir he could/would create.

I don’t know folks. It all could mean a number of things, or nothing at all. And all the speculation could be needless. I’m just shrugging at it all.

Would Marvel really cast Morris Chestnut as Black Panther? It doesn’t immediately make a lot of sense to me. I can’t *see* it. Even a screen-test. I especially can’t *hear* it (the accent). Then again, when it comes to black characters in Marvel movies, the studio’s record hasn’t exactly been all that great. Sometimes I wonder if the only casting criteria that matters on the casting call sheet is that the characters are black.

We’ve already talked about the potential for a Black Panther movie to death, and, as I said in a previous post, I’ve pretty much given up expecting one to happen anytime soon, if at all. Marvel will probably explore every other superhero in its library on film, before we see standalone movies with any of its key black superheroes. Or they’ll be supporting/peripheral characters in movies about other non-Black Marvel superheroes

If they really wanted to make one, given how much lip-service has been given to the possibility over the years, I’d think that they would have done so by now.

Here’s the comic book cover/post that Chestnut posted today; feel free to read into it as much as you want, or not at all.

It’s time to get familiar with the Black Panther character.

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I still agree with Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje to play Black Panther.


Why does he look so smoked out? "All them Black & Milds are starting to catch up to you, Morris."

William K. Wallace

As the Obenson said above I also don't see them making a Black Panther or any other movie starring a black superhero, money always being the chief reason but particularly because they need what precious few they have to pepper in Captain America and Avengers movies. As for Chestnut wouldn't want him in the role, while I feel Halle Berry didn't respect the role of Storm because it wasn't Rosa Parks or Dorothy Dandridge, she is a good actor, Chestnut would respect the role but is not terribly deft actor.

I love the idea of making T'Challa younger, here's and appropriately trite idea I posted elsewhere on a possible movie. Black Panther, Marvel's first black superhero with a strong enough back story to carry a movie all by his lonesome. A story with Claw and an army of mercenaries, negotiations over Vibranium, intrigue and betrayals leading to T'Chaka's murder, T'Challa fresh from schooling in the UK etc…


I looked into interviews with Kevin Feige a few days ago trying to find where he'd said Wakanda would be hard to pull off (turns out it was Louis D'Esposito who said it), and he actually seemed keen on a Black Panther film. He talked it up along with the Dr. Strange movie, which has now been confirmed to be in Marvel's Phase 3 (post-Avengers 2) so IMO a Black Panther film is a possibility.

While I don't think it's necessarily a confirmation of anything, it gives me hope. They could just be doing a screen test to convince Marvel Studios to jump on it – like a fan pilot of sorts (which I would totally do myself if I could find enough African comic book nerds to help me with it).

Also, let's be real – Hollywood hardly ever casts actual Africans in African roles. Unless it's Djimon or Chiwetel, there aren't many Africans who Hollywood would feel comfortable casting in a lead role – who are recognizable to the general public (read: not just to black audiences) and known to draw in moviegoers. With all that in mind, Morris Chestnut is actually a reasonable pick – for the auditions at least. I could see Djimon or Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (who's unfortunately already been cast in Thor, so no luck) doing a good job of it. Personally, though, I'd love for them to cast a younger actor in the role, and then introduce him in the Avengers 2. Have T'Challa be just taking over the throne from his father, and the Avengers be skeptical about whether he's a good candidate, but then win them over one by one – first Iron Man/Hulk with his smarts, Captain America with his moral fortitude, and everyone else with his fighting skills. Quick, someone call Joss Whedon!!!

Now that I think about it, I can totally see Morris Chestnut taking down the posts if Black Panther is, as I pondered above, scheduled to make an appearance in the Avengers 2 – if that's true, the posts would be a MAJOR spoiler. Plus, Joss Whedon is still scripting/just finished scripting, so even if it's not set in stone, I can (tentatively) dream a little.


My first reaction is no, but I don't want to be so quick to judgment. He might actually be good in the role, so I'll keep an open mind, but i'll admit I do have some skepticism.


The brother from 300…the one who took the HUGE L, is who I have in mind as T'challa
Peter Mensah


I first thought that Black Panther would show up in Capt. America 2 and/or Avengers 2, but it looks like Black Falcon beat him to both. Or maybe not…they just better cast it right.

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