The #BlackPanther Revolution! ‘Black Panther’ Chadwick Boseman Covers Rolling Stone
‘Black Panther’ is fast becoming one of the biggest blockbusters of all-time. And its success is elevating the stars of its colossal cast – including lead Chadwick Boseman.
The 41-year-old actor, who covers the newest issue of Rolling Stone magazine, had up until now been most renown for his roles in Afro-American biopics. Case in point Jackie Robinson (’42’), James Brown (‘Get On Up’), and Thurgood Marshall (‘Marshall’).
With ‘Panther’ though, he’s entered into new terrain. One that has the masses magnetised to his own story.
In his RS feature, he quenches the thirst of curiosity surrounding his rise, playing the superhero, and more.
On the world finally has its first African superhero movie:
“It’s a sea-change moment. I still remember the excitement people had seeing Malcolm X. And this is greater, because it includes other people, too. Everybody comes to see the Marvel movie.”
On ensuring Wakandans had African accents in ‘Black Panther’:
“I had to push for that. I felt there was no way in the world I could do the movie without an accent. But I had to convince [the studio] it was something we couldn’t be afraid of. My argument was that we train the audience’s ear in the first five minutes – give them subtitles, give them whatever they need – and I believe they’ll follow it the same way they’ll follow an Irish accent or a Cockney accent. We watch movies all the time when this happens,” he adds. “Why all of a sudden is it ‘We can’t follow it’ when it’s African?”
On combatting his nervousness for the greater good:
“Going on a talk show? Oh, my God. Nah.
[That said] I truly believe there’s a truth that needs to enter the world at a particular time. And that’s why people are excited about Panther. This is the time.”
On Phylicia Rashad becoming his mentor after taking her acting class at Howard University:
“She would do a play in D.C. and you’d go see it, and she’d drive you home and talk to you. ‘How you eating? You look too skinny. You need a pork chop.’ We were just trying to aspire to her excellence.”
On embracing the sheer scale of the ‘Black Panther’ production (and the necessity for it when lined up with other Marvel movies:
“The money and manpower it takes to create this entire African world – it’s a huge production. But this is not Star Wars – this is a black superhero movie!”
What would it mean if it didn’t happen? You’d be saying there’s a second class of Marvel movies. A second-class citizenship.”
Needless to say, with the huge box-office returns for ‘Black Panther,’ Boseman and all involved have shown their first-class worth.
Here’s hoping Hollywood, and the world more broadly, respond to this by finally giving ethnically diverse stories and stars the first-class push deserved. Because, as ‘Black Panther’ more than proves, the returns are fruitful – critically and commercially.