A Marvel Studios executive producer has confirmed that Disney will not use a digital double of late actor Chadwick Boseman in a Black Panther sequel.
In an interview with Clarin, executive producer Victoria Alonso dismissed the idea of digitally recreating Boseman, who died from colon cancer in August at the age of 43.
“No. There’s only one Chadwick, and he’s not with us. Our king, unfortunately, has died in real life, not just in fiction, and we are taking a little time to see how we return to history and what we do to honor this chapter of what has happened to us that was so unexpected, so painful, so terrible, really,” Alonso said.
Alonso, who has been with Marvel Studios since Phase One of the MCU, said of Boseman that he “was not only a wonder of being human every day that we spend together the five years that we spend together, but it also seems to me that as a character what he did elevated us as a company, and has left his moment in history.”
Alonso added that no decision has been made yet about what Marvel will do with the Black Panther franchise now: “I know that sometimes two months go by or three months go by in production and one says, already, it was a long time. But it is not a long time, we have to think carefully about what we are going to do, and how, and think about how we are going to honor the franchise.”
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Using digital effects to recreate Boseman’s T’Challa certainly isn’t out of the realm of possibility, considering Disney utilized CGI to portray deceased actors like Peter Cushing (Grand Moff Tarkin) in Rogue One and a younger version of Carrie Fisher in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Rogue One.
Disney may be even more hesitant to use a CGI double since various Black Panther actors have expressed their dismay over how to continue the franchise without Boseman.
“We’re just still mourning Chad, so it’s not something I even want to think about,” Wright said when asked about reprising her role as Shuri, Princess of Wakanda, for the Black Panther sequel. “The thought of doing it without him is kinda strange. We’re just grieving at the moment, so it’s trying to find the light in the midst of it.”
Black Panther 2 was originally scheduled to be released in 2022, though, with complications stemming from COVID, Disney’s schedule is likely to be altered in the future.