Black Panther still stands as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most political movie, with the 2018 Best Picture Oscar nominee not only featuring a predominantly Black cast but also exploring the complexities of what it means to be African (as represented by its hero, Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa) versus African American (via the worldview of its antagonist, Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger).
As T’Challa’s mother Ramonda (Angela Bassett), sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) and the residents of Wakanda mourn the death of their king (a seismic plot change rewritten into the script after the death of Boseman in 2020), they’re also confronted by the mer-people of Talokan, an underwater civilization that, like Wakanda, has been kept hidden from the rest of the world. Ruled by the 500-year-old Namor (Tenoch Huerta), the Talokan angrily emerge from the depths of their Atlantis-like kingdom when the U.S. government begins mining the sea for Vibranium. The precious element is the Talokan’s most prized resource, too — another thing they share in common with Wakanda.
The Talokan, based on ancient Mayan and Mesoamerican civilizations and cast with all Latinx actors, were forced underwater when their land was invaded by colonizers. (The African-based Wakanda, per Marvel mythology, managed to be avoid colonization by hiding itself from the world.) It all plays into Wakanda Forever’s larger theme in which Coogler and company explore the shared experiences of Black, Latinx and indigenous people across the world. In many ways, the film’s budding rivals — Shuri and Namor — are the new T’Challa and Killmonger.
“The things that our cultures have in common, I think it’s been much-discussed, and much-written about,” Coogler told us. “What transpired on the content of Africa, if you think about what transpired in the Americas, you’ll see similarities. … But in this movie they both just kind of want to be left alone.”
“Especially if you contrast Wakanda, which had never been colonized, with these Talokan who fled colonization, there’s a conversation about indigenous people and their experiences, which I think is really interesting,” says producer Nate Moore. “Because it is a shared experience. And its an unfortunately globally shared experience by a lot of people. And I think the conversation Namor is having with Wakanda is, ‘Hey, here’s why I’m so intent on protecting my people. Because the only reason we live where we live is because we were fleeing this thing. That probably could happen again, and could happen to you.’
“And I think that makes it timely. I think maybe there’s a feeling that colonization was a thing of the past, but it’s still happening.”
Says Lupita Nyong’o, the Mexican-born, Kenya-raised actress who plays Nakia: “It draws a correlation of how distinct the experiences are, but also how similar. Our wounds are so similar. And we see this in this story. Talokan echoes Wakanda, as much as the Latinx experience can echo the Black experience. And I just love how we go head-to-head in this film. And at the end of the day, it’s, ‘OK, where is our point of truce? When do we see ourselves in the mirror?’”
Huerta echoes similar sentiments, citing the events of the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, also known as the Conquest of Mexico, in the early 1500s. “In the end, we share the same wounds,” he says. “This catastrophe, this holocaust that happened to our people, our ancestors, it was almost at the same time [of the Atlantic slave trade]. Now, years later, we are trying to [reconcile] with ourselves, and with the other people. So I think this movie and this kind of narrative helps to create this union and bondage among all of us. But yeah, we definitely share the same kind of story.”
With its supporting cast, Wakanda Forever also becomes the first Marvel movie to prominently feature multiple Latinx actors.
“A big part of Black Panther’s legacy is representation. Knocking down doors, and giving other cultures visibility,” says Alex Livinalli, who plays Attuma and is the first Venezuelan actor to enter the MCU.
The Mexico-born, Veracruz-raised Mabel Cadena, who co-stars as Namora, didn’t even speak English when she was cast in the film.
“Thanks to the first Black Panther movie and its cast, we have the opportunity to represent Latin communities,” she says. “Faces like [mine], with this color. With this beauty. With this amazing diversity… It’s amazing to have all these cultures in our movie. So I’m very proud about this opportunity.”
U.S. Treasury Yellen: Twitter should be held to certain standards for content
Wike And The Gang Entertaining Us Like Slaves Do To Their Colonial Masters – Fadahunsi
BREAKING: YABATECH: One Shot Dead As Students Week Turns Bloody [Video]
Why America changed its mind on same-sex marriage
BREAKING: ISIS Confirms Death Of Leader, Al-Hashmi al-Qurayshi, Names Successor
Aisha Buhari: ‘She’s eating Nigeria’s money’ – Deji Adeyanju reports First Lady To UN
100 Happy New Month Of December Messages 2022, Wishes & Prayers For All
Breaking: Hakeem Jeffries succeeds Pelosi, to lead House Dems…becomes 1st Black party leader in Congress
Wamakko:Former Sokoto Governor loses wife after daughter, PA’s death
2023 Presidency: Seyi Tinubu meets Odumeje, Whitemoney,Yul Edochie,others [VIDEO]
2023 Presidency: Atiku is Fulani but not a killer – Titi Atiku-Abubakar
Top Gas Company, Greenville LNG Risks Another Multimillion Dollar Lawsuit
Why Wizkid Reminds Me Of One Nurse Bolanle – Iyabo Ojo Explains
Ogun:27-year-old Yahoo boy arrested for beating his undergraduate girlfriend to death
Breaking: “PDP will beg Governor Wike” – Udom
Top Stories21 hours ago
What Peter Obi Must Meet Before Debating With Tinubu – APC
News20 hours ago
Top Nigerian Newspaper Reviews & Naija News Today, Wednesday 30th November 2022
News21 hours ago
Dollar to Naira Exchange Rate (USD/NGN) Nov. 30, 2022 (Black Market)
Top Stories20 hours ago
Hold El-Rufai Responsible For LP Women Leader’s Death – Okonkwo
Top Stories14 hours ago
BREAKING: Buhari Govt Finally Pays ASUU Salary For November…
Top Stories14 hours ago
Breaking: Alleged Rape: Court Sends Lagos Doctor Olaleye To ‘Ikoyi’
Sports14 hours ago
Breaking: Cristiano Ronaldo ‘becomes highest-earner in sport after agreeing a $207m-a-year deal with Al Nassr’
Business and Brands20 hours ago
Coinbase Wallet to End Support for Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum Classic, Ripple’s XRP and Stellar’s XLM