Marvel’s Black Panther Movie

Marvel’s Black Panther

By Erin

The time has finally come! The next installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Black Panther, is out!  In 2016, we welcomed T’Challa/Black Panther to the big screen and he was introduced to us in “Captain America: Civil War,” the record-breaking hit film that pitted the Avengers against one another. When the Black Panther character debuted in the ’60s it was a daring move for the Marvel bullpen of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby to introduce this new character, an African character who is smarter than many of the other heroes and is stronger than most of the other heroes. To be able to put that on the big screen fifty years later is incredibly exciting to see!

Over the years, plans for rolling out a “Black Panther” chapter into the Marvel Studios pipeline had been discussed, but it ultimately came to fruitation when Feige opted to showcase Black Panther in “Civil War” as a springboard for a stand-alone feature film, so here we are with this masterpiece.

Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o), T’Challa/Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) ©Marvel Studios 2018

“Black Panther” follows T’Challa who, afer the death of his father, the King of Wakanda, he returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation to take his rightful place as King. But when a powerful old enemy reappears, T’Challa’s is tested when he is drawn into a formidable conflict that puts the fate of Wakanda and the entire world at risk. Faced with treachery and danger, the young king must rally his allies and release the full power of Black Panther to defeat his foes and secure the safety of his people and their way of life. It’s a very powerful film and I wanted to share some fun facts about the film before (or after if you’ve already seen it!) you head out to go see it.

  • Marvel’s Black Panther character made his debut in the comic book world in “Fantastic Four Vol. 1” Issue 52, published in 1966.
  • An important part of the Black Panther lore incorporated into the film is the Dora Milaje, the cadre of strong fierce women who serve as the personal security force to the King and royal family. These tall, statuesque, bald-headed warrior women, who move as one, command attention wherever they go.
  • Led by Danai Gurira’s character, Okoye, the Dora Milaje security force features an international contingent of women from all over the world, including Florence Kasumba who returns to play Ayo, a character that first appeared in Marvel Studios’ “Captain America: Civil War.” The Dora Milaje were cast from a pool of actresses, stunt women and Broadway dancers so that each individual Dora could have specialized skills that they brought to the table.

Okoye (Danai Gurira), Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) and Ayo (Florence Kasumba) Photo: Matt Kennedy© Marvel Studios 2018

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Meet the Cast of the Black Panther!

Meet the Cast of the Black Panther!

By Erin

Marvel Studios is coming out with one of the most anticipated super-hero films ever; Black Panther, the story of T’Challa, a young African prince who takes on the mantle of King and Super Hero, and the centuries-old legacy that comes with it. T’Challa returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda to become king, but when a powerful old enemy reappears, T’Challa’s mettle as king—and Black Panther—is tested when he is drawn into a formidable conflict that puts the fate of Wakanda and the entire world at risk. Long known for its revolutionary creative vision, Marvel Comics has introduced its audiences to a diverse roster of Super Heroes since 1939, most notably with the groundbreaking Black Panther character that made its first appearance in “Fantastic Four Vol. 1” Issue 52, published in 1966. Arriving in theatres everywhere on February 16, 2018, you won’t want to miss this one!

Before going out to see it, check out what the cast had to share with us at the press conference about this amazing film!

In attendance was:

  •         Chadwick Boseman (“T’Challa / Black Panther”) 
  •          Lupita Nyong’o (“Nakia”)
  •          Michael B. Jordan (“Erik Killmonger”)
  •          Danai Gurira (“Okoye”)
  •          Angela Bassett (“Ramonda”) 
  •          Forest Whitaker (“Zuri”)
  •          Andy Serkis (“Ulysses Klaue”)
  •          Martin Freeman (“Everett K Ross”)
  •          Daniel Kaluuya (“W’Kabi”)
  •          Winston Duke (“M’Baku”)
  •          Letitia Wright (“Shuri”)
  •          Director Ryan Coogler
  •          Producer Kevin Feige

Chadwick Boseman. Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

The first topic that was discussed was about when Chadwick Boseman got the call to play Black Panther in Civil War, and if he knew that role would end up having a movie based solely around him later on?  

Chadwick: The initial phone call from Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Nate Moore and the Russo Brothers was one where they essentially said, ‘We want to bring your character into the Marvel Comic Universe – as a stand-alone, but this is the best way to introduce him in Civil War.’  So I was aware of it.  And I think when I was shooting Civil War, I was not aware that other people weren’t aware that this was going to happen, because it was such at the forefront of my mind and when we did the introduction at El Capitan.  So – I’m sorry that you didn’t know that. But at the same time, I love the fact that it’s a surprise to people.

Many props were given to the ladies of Wakanda. All the ladies are so powerful, so beautiful, and so regal on that screen.  This film is Black Panther, but could also have been called The Bad-Ass Women of Wakanda.  For real. “The bad ass women of Wakanda” term came from the moderator of the press Junket, Nischelle Turner from E.T. (Entertainment Tonight). Beautiful Angela Bassett plays the queen and she shared how proud she was of the film.

Angela:  I was so pleased that this story, written by Ryan, and Joe Robert Cole, and Marvel, that it supported that. In African culture, they feel as if there is no king without a queen. I think in this story, it highlights the queen, the warrior, the general – the young sister.  I was so proud to have my daughter, and my son there last night, because in their faces, and in their spirit –and they were feeling themselves. And they stood taller after last night.

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Disney•Pixar’s COCO 

Disney•Pixar’s COCO

By Erin

Disney•Pixar’s COCO is now playing in theatres everywhere! Also, for a limited time only, you can see the brand new Walt Disney Animation Studios’ featurette OLAF’S FROZEN ADVENTURE playing in front of COCO only in theatres! Both of these films are the perfect way to start the holiday season! They will give you all the warm and fuzzy feels.

In COCO, Miguel is an aspiring singer and self-taught guitarist who dreams of following in the footsteps of his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz, the most famous musician in the history of Mexico. But Miguel’s family forbids music. Many years ago, his great-great-grandmother and great-great-grandfather came to an impasse: She wanted to raise their family together in Santa Cecilia, but he couldn’t let go of his dream, leaving his family behind in his quest to be a musician. Passed down from generation to generation, great-great-grandmother Mamá Imelda’s consequent ban on music is strictly enforced—much to Miguel’s dismay. When Miguel unearths a secret from his family’s past—a connection to Ernesto de la Cruz, he rushes to share the news with his family, thinking it will clear the way for him to be a musician. Unfortunately, it only makes matters worse. Miguel feels like he has to choose between his passion for music and his love for his family. Miguel wants to prove to his family that making music is both beautiful and honorable. We follow Miguel as he follows his heart and his dreams.

NO MUSIC – Miguel challenges his family’s generations-old ban on music, spending time with a local mariachi. But his grandmother Abuelita promptly puts a stop to it.

A magical event is sparked by Miguel’s impulsive actions that renders him visible only to those who have come to visit from the Land of the Dead on Día de los Muertos. This world is a beautiful, lively and colorful parallel world that is populated by generations and generations of people who long ago left the Land of the Living, including Miguel’s own ancestors, who instantly recognize him and offer to help—but only if he agrees to give up music forever. Miguel ends up running into and teams up with a scrappy, streetwise skeleton named Héctor and they set out to find Ernesto de la Cruz—who they believe holds the key to Miguel’s baffling and decidedly unmusical family history.

What happens next? Well you will just have to go see the film now won’t you? 😉 I do not want to give away all the magical twists and turns and melt-your-heart moments. However, I will leave you with some fun tidbits about the film and some cool things to look for and take notice of in Coco!

Miguel’s love of music ultimately leads him to the Land of the Dead where he teams up with charming trickster Hector.

THEM BONES – Look for the very subtle nods to the skeleton residents in the Land of the Dead, like the cobblestone streets that feature some bone-shaped paving stones.

CHANGE OF PLANTS – Artists at Pixar Animation Studios like to add vegetation—grass, trees, bushes—to exterior environments, but “Coco” filmmakers wanted the Land of the Dead to be different. The only living plants in the vibrant fantastical world are marigolds.

• During research trips to Mexico, filmmakers learned that the color and aroma of marigold petals are believed to help guide the spirit of a family’s loved one home during Día de los Muertos.

Miguel (voice of Anthony Gonzalez) finds himself in the Land of the Dead—a rich and vibrant community featuring bridges of marigold petals.

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