Interview: Chadwick Boseman on “Black Panther”

Chadwick Boseman

Marvel Studios’ Black Panther is ruling the box office and Chadwick Boseman who plays the titular hero talks about his role and working with director, Ryan Coogler.

INDULGE: How is Black Panther different from all the other Marvel superheroes?

CHADWICK: I think you can see the burden of the crown, the throne. This is an entire country, an entirely different world that we are in and you can see the weight that’s upon him as a ruler and a superhero. The mythology that’s  behind him, the tradition that’s behind him, is part of what weighs on him as a person.

Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther.

INDULGE: What was your reaction to the script?

CHADWICK: I was enthusiastic about how Wakanda was presented initially.  I think it has a great villain in the story, and there’s an emotional connection to his story which makes the story complex. I also felt like there was a lot of ground that we didn’t cover in Civil War and we had a lot of room in this one to do just that.

INDULGE: Where do we find him at the top of the film and what are his challenges?

CHADWICK: At the top of the film, my father is killed in a civil war and I have to return to Wakanda, a place where there is unrest because they’ve lost their ruler, to take on the throne. And the question is – should I take on the throne if I could not protect my father? So that’s the dilemma and the weight of my returning.

INDULGE: What do you think of the world of Wakanda and how it was realized on film?

CHADWICK: I love that they put so much thought into every aspect of the production design. The wardrobe, special effects — all of that stuff is something that couldn’t have been done when the comic book was created. Even in the nineties you couldn’t have done it on this level. So in some ways, you go ‘we should have made a movie like this years ago’ but on another level, you’re like ‘I’m glad it happened right now.’

Marvel Studios’ BLACK PANTHER L to R: Director Ryan Coogler and Chadwick Boseman (T’Challa/Black Panther) on set Credit: Matt Kennedy/ Marvel Studios

INDULGE: What was it like working with Director, Ryan Coogler?

CHADWICK: He’s a very, very passionate director. Puts his heart and soul in what he does and won’t pick a project unless it’s something he believes in.  He sees himself almost like a coach and we’re part of his team. A great motivator. He expects a certain kind of work ethic from everyone in the film.

INDULGE: How did you approach your character?

CHADWICK: I think he (Coogler) already saw what I was doing from Civil War and so he took that and sort of moved it into this movie. We were on the same page from the beginning in terms of who the character was, so our conversations were more about the total story than the character itself.

— Kelly Fine