Ryan Coogler Says ‘Wakanda Forever’ was Originally Going to Be a “Father-Son Story”

Jaelani Turner-Williams Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with…
Photo Credit: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Disney

In a new interview with The New York Times, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever director Ryan Coogler explained the film’s original storyline.

Ryan Coogler has given a glimpse into what Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’s original storyline was prior to Chadwick Boseman‘s death. The Oakland-raised filmmaker recently spoke with The New York Times, detailing that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was originally set to be a “father-son story” from T’Challa’s perspective with other elements that made the film vastly different from its final version.

Coogler also shared that the reveal of T’Challa’s son Toussaint (Divine Love Konadu-Sun) — shared with Nakia (Lupita N’yongo) — was going to be in the beginning, unlike the eventual sequel where Toussaint was introduced in a post-credits scene. The idea was to also show that T’Challa missed the first five years of Toussaint’s life due to being blipped by Thanos.

“The first scene was an animated sequence,” Coogler said. “You hear Nakia talking to Toussaint. She says, ‘Tell me what you know about your father.’ You realize that he doesn’t know his dad was the Black Panther. He’s never met him, and Nakia is remarried to a Haitian dude. Then, we cut to reality and it’s the night that everybody comes back from the Blip. You see T’Challa meet the kid for the first time.”

While the film would have chronicled T’Challa’s return along with half of humanity, Coogler notes that the storyline would have another time jump.

“Then it cuts ahead three years and [T’Challa is] essentially co-parenting. We had some crazy scenes in there for Chad, man. Our code name for the movie was ‘Summer Break,’ and the movie was about a summer that the kid spends with his dad. For his eighth birthday, they do a ritual where they go out into the bush and have to live off the land. But something happens and T’Challa has to go save the world with his son on his hip. That was the movie.”

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is still in theaters, closing in on $800 million at the global box office.

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