Angela Bassett almost didn’t agree to this one plot point for her character in ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’

November 15, 2022 4:53 p.m. EST
November 15, 2022 4:53 p.m. EST

After the massive success of 2018’s Black Panther, which won three Oscars and was nominated for seven, many in the Marvel Cinematic Universe were unsure any sequel would be able to top that feat. Considering the tragic death of its lead T’Challa, Chadwick Boseman, who lost his battle with cancer in 2020, a sequel for a while seemed almost unlikely. 


But now that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is in cinemas and critics are raving about the return of T’Challa’s mother, Queen Ramonda, played by the incomparable Angela Bassett, there are new things to rave about (more Oscars!) and also, new characters to mourn.


Speaking with IndieWire, the What’s Love Got To Do With It? icon revealed that she was initially hesitant about Queen Ramonda’s story arc: in that—LAST SPOILER WARNING – she dies.


 “I objected,” she told the outlet. “Yeah, I was like, ‘Ryan [Coogler, writer/director], what are you doing? Why? You will rue the day! You will rue the demise of [Ramonda]. People are gonna be so upset.'”


But as the How Stella Got Her Groove Back star tells it, Coogler explained why Ramonda’s death isn’t exactly a death. After all, this the MCU!


“‘He was like, ‘Angela, I know, I know, but look, to die is not really to die in this world. It doesn’t really have to mean that.’” 


It took looking back at some of the characters who “poofed” back to mortality after their very-real deaths in Avengers:Endgame for her to realize that Ramonda could just as easily be brought back to life. “All kinds of crazy things happen,” she reasoned. 


The Waiting To Exhale legend also made sure to credit Coogler for making the set a collaborative environment where she could play around with ideas. “He’s extremely clear on the story and what he’s doing, but the way he carries himself around the cast and the crew. It’s so collaborative. He’s so self-effacing,” she told IndieWire. 


“That impostor syndrome that we’re feeling or whatever, he will just say it out loud. ‘I don’t know about these words. Are you OK with them?’ And he really invites you to have your say, be a part, which is wonderful. He doesn’t straightjacket you.”


It was that sense of play and characterization that Angela delved into which is really affecting fans who have already seen the movie. In fact, as the outlet points out, Angela is now in serious contention for an Academy Award this year. And fans on social media agree. 



While Angela didn’t tell the outlet exactly how she feels about possibly being in Oscar contention this year, she did give the most humble-Angela answer we’ve come to expect from her. “I always think about trying to make something memorable.”


You might also like