Taking inspiration from the work of writers Christopher Priest and Ta-Nehisi Coates, it should come as little surprise that Marvel Studios' upcoming superhero blockbuster Black Panther will attempt to shine a light on the current real-life geopolitical climate. However, while politics are certainly at the core of the film, producer Nate Moore has explained that this thematic element isn't so much inserted into the narrative as it is inherent to it.
"I think the movie is inherently political," Moore said during a visit to the film’s set by outlets including Screen Rant. "Just the idea of Wakanda being a nation in Africa that is the most technologically advanced in the world is a political statement without us having to go too much far past that. As to how political it will be when the film comes out next year, obviously we all know the political landscape is shifting so quickly it’s so hard to say. But when you’re dealing with an African character and the outside world, politics are inherently there."
"We don’t want to be too political," he continued. "It’s not by any means a message movie. But I think people once they see the film will see the relevance in it. In the same way that [Captain America: The Winter Soldier] was without hopefully being too textual was talking about issues that we were all talking about in defense and information gathering and that kind of stuff. I think Panther will have similar echoes of what’s happening."
Even if you look beyond Moore's statement, the precedent for politics being a crucial element of Black Panther was set all the way back in Avengers: Age of Ultron. In that film, we were first introduced to Andy Serkis' Ulysses Klaue, who we learned was illegally mining Wakanda's precious vibranium and selling it on the black market. This alone draws uncanny parallels to real-world countries being exploited for their own resources, be it oil, diamonds or even manual labor. Given the fact that Serkis will reprise his role as Klaue in Black Panther, it seems only natural that the film would attempt to address this plot point, among others.
Arriving in theaters Feb. 16, director Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther stars Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Guira, Letitia Wright, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Martin Freeman, Forest Whitaker, Andy Serkis, and Angela Bassett.