Anticipation has been high over this movie, especially in the black community. This was on course to become the biggest black-dominated movie of our generation (if you’re an 80s baby like me). If you’re still lost I’m talking about Marvel Studios‘ Black Panther (not to be confused with the civil rights black movement).
Having first met Black Panther on-screen in Captain America: Civil War (which is actually an Avengers movie, but I guess they had to spare Thor’s feelings) it took me a minute to warm up to his character, now he’s become one of my favourites (Wolverine and Deadpool are tied for that position).
Now first we start off with the juicy parts, without mentioning any spoilers.
Black Panther Box Office Success
We all know that Marvel is winning right now (DC fans sit down!) and as such the marketing was on point but it had a different twist this time around. From inception it was made clear that Black Panther would be a black-dominated movie, which is enough to draw the black community in, who may not even follow the Marvel Cinematic Universe storyline but just want to support their own.
For the soundtrack album, throw in the man of the moment, in terms of Hip-Hop music, Kendrick Lamar to curate and produce the soundtrack and BAM! now we got the Hip-Hop crowd interested in it as well.
Did this help? In its opening weekend it has grossed over US$361 Million worldwide (US$192 Million in America) with a US$200 Million dollar budget. “NUMBERS DO NOT LIE!”.
That’s not all, it has become the fifth-highest grossing movie of all-time in the US (if we’re talking opening weekend numbers). It’s also the highest debut by an African-American director Ryan Coogler (who also directed Creed).
It’s definitely set out to be this year’s blockbuster (giving strong competition to Avengers: Infinity War (which also features Black Panther).
2. Black Panther Premiere Dresscode
Beginning with the Los Angeles premiere you could not just go to any Black Panther premiere without getting your African regalia correct. Why was African regalia so important? Just because it has people of African origin? That would be far-fetched now wouldn’t it?
The African regalia is because the location the movie takes place in is Wakanda (which happens to be in uncolonized Africa). Now it makes sense, right?
3. Black Panther’s Origins Have Zimbabwean Roots
At this point I can write a whole thesis on Black Panther and hopefully if you didn’t know what the hype was all about you do know now. I included an extra video about the Black Panther family tree (and there’s a white guy in there too).