“Black Panther,” which hits theaters Friday, will not only be huge for the culture, it will be a game-changer for the film industry. The Marvel blockbuster is expected to gross at least $150 million in the United States and Canada through Monday, according to the L.A. Times.
“Black Panther” could change the way Hollywood operates when it comes to movies with predominantly black casts and filmmakers. Unlike movies like “Girls Trip” and those by Tyler Perry, “Black Panther” is getting a global release and marketing push, the L.A. Times reports.
Ryan Coogler, the 31-year-old director, sat down with WPGC’s Poet during a press tour stop in D.C. to talk about shooting “Black Panther” and what it means for the industry.
Did Coogler expect “Black Panther” to be so influential? “No, not at all.”
The man behind “Fruitvale Station” and “Creed” is following Kendrick Lamar’s advice and staying humble.
“For me, I gotta look at it as a movie, I have to. If people attach more to it that’s beautiful,” Coogler told Poet, “but for me looking at it as a movie was enough.”
He continued, “If the film works, it could play a role in maybe disproving some myths” about how black movies perform overseas.
Ultimately, the movie’s impact lies in its superhero and cast: “The importance of what this character has meant for people who follow comic books, what this character means now, and the idea that there hasn’t been a movie of this scale that was about Africans.”
“Black Panther” Executive Producer Nate Moore and Lead Costume Designer Ruth E. Carter also chatted with Poet.
“Because of what this movie could represent if we did get it right, we knew we had to make sure it felt authentic, it felt real, it felt emotional,” Moore said, “so that more films like this could get made.”
“The stories have to be really good because if we give you the B version of ‘Black Panther’ and it doesn’t work that’s actually more damaging than not making the film.”
On designing the costumes, “Black women, we always think of ourselves as queens anyway,” Carter said. “We give it a context, we give it an origin and a place, so I think that women will leave the film feeling empowered.”
Watch the full interview below:
“Black Panther” hits theaters on Friday, February 16.
(Videos shot by Jae Benear)
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