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Marvel Boss Nate Moore Confirms Black Panther 2 Was Almost Titled ‘Kingdom of the Deep’ Instead of ‘Wakanda Forever’

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Marvel’s Phase Four finale, Black Panther 2, gave the comic world a makeover with its ingenious story. Ryan Coogler’s vision for the sequel to 2018’s billion-dollar success was such that it never disappointed in a single aspect. All the threads that were left frayed and open by the end of 2019’s Endgame and 2020’s tragedy were gathered together and braided into a unified narrative that was more an honorarium than a comic book movie.

As the healing now begins, Marvel Studios VP of Production & Development, Nate Moore, divulges the nitty-gritty of what went into the making of the film, coming to terms with the loss of a legacy, and the reshaping that was put into effect after that loss.

Black Panther 2
Black Panther 2 was to be named after Namor

Also read: Tenoch Huerta, Who Plays Namor, Had an Emotional Request For Director Ryan Coogler While Shooting Black Panther 2

Nate Moore Discloses Black Panther 2‘s Initial Subtitle

As early as 2019, the script for the Black Panther sequel that was already in motion had brought out the underwater world to the surface and pitted the kingdom of Namor against that of the Black Panther. But having lost his lead in 2020, Ryan Coogler had to reorient focus and reshape the script in a way that made more sense to the grieving cast, crew, and audience around the world. And one of the aspects involved settling on a subtitle for the Phase Four film.

While speaking to Collider, Nate Moore detailed the to and fro that went into settling on a subtitle that was fit for a king and for honoring his legacy — which was what Black Panther 2 was striving to make happen.

“You’re like, ‘Kingdom of the Deep’? You’re like, “Does it have to be about Namor?” Then we realized that ‘Wakanda Forever’ felt right, because it’s a story about triumph through adversity. It’s a story about legacy, it’s a story about persistence, and ‘Wakanda Forever’ says all those things. Initially, I will say this, at one point it was like, ‘Oh, that feels like the title of the third movie. Where do you go from Wakanda Forever? That feels like it’s the end.’ But no, actually it felt really appropriate thematically to the story we were trying to tell.”

Black Panther 2 explores Namor's Mayan heritage
Black Panther 2 explores Namor’s kingdom and heritage

Also read: “This deserves to continue after all of us are gone”: Black Panther 3 Already Being Discussed Between Ryan Coogler and Kevin Feige Despite Not Recasting King T’Challa

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever not only did justice to its thematic structure, but the film also went above and beyond in elevating Chadwick Boseman‘s immortalized contribution and representation on the screen.

Ryan Coogler Made Changes to the Black Panther 2 Script

It was understandable that in the aftermath of losing the most fundamental element of a film that was to be the Marvel franchise’s biggest Phase Four event, Ryan Coogler who co-wrote the script with Joe Robert Cole, would want to see his film honoring the memory of his late friend. But at the same time, the story had to be poignant, subtle, respectable, and unabashed in its representation of grief. For a comic book movie, that was a tall order, but for every individual involved with the film, it was the only acceptable path to take. In an interview with Empire, Ryan Coogler revealed,

“Maturity is about being faced with impossible questions, and still making a choice and moving forward. [The film’s] unique [cast] is more like a band than it is a group of actors, and Chad was our lead singer. So for me, it was like, ‘How do I figure out a song that they can still get up there and sing?’, in light of what we were dealing with.”

Chadwick Boseman's TChalla in the ancestral plane
Ryan Coogler pays tribute to friend and actor, Chadwick Boseman

Also read: “Letitia Wright seriously proved she can be the face of this franchise”: Black Panther 2 Early Reviews Hail Shuri as the One True Successor to Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa

The central question — How do you carry on in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds? — haunted the cast, the director, and their film’s central narrative. But it was in the wake of an incomprehensible loss that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was born. And it wasn’t just Letitia Wright who was given the opportunity to grieve, cry, and laugh” but the world healed along with her by the time the lights came back on in the theatres.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is now playing in theatres worldwide.

Source: Collider

Written by Diya Majumdar

At 25, Diya Majumdar is inching closer to getting to the bottom of every film and television's history in existence. Having graduated with honors in literature from Miranda House, DU, her passion and profession both include dissecting the world of cinema, with more than 800 published articles on Fandomwire. She is a liberally opinionated person with an overbearing love for Monet, Edvard Munch, and Van Gogh and boasts of being an avid painter of all their troubled works.