Black Panther director Ryan Coogler has admitted he almost quit directing after the tragic death of Chadwick Boseman in 2020.
Coogler told Entertainment Weekly in an interview ahead of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, that he thought about leaving the profession.
He told the outlet:
“I was at a point when I was like, ‘I’m walking away from this business. I didn’t know if I could make another movie period, [let alone] another Black Panther movie, because it hurt a lot. I was like, ‘Man, how could I open myself up to feeling like this again?’”
Coogler says after reflecting on their relationship and the conversations they had about the film and character of T'Challa, he decided to keep going
“I was poring over a lot of our conversations that we had, towards what I realized was the end of his life,” he said. “I decided that it made more sense to keep going.”
Now with 'Black Panther: Wakanda Forever' arriving this November, the filmmaker has delivered a film befitting Boseman's legacy and one that will honor the late star.
Coogler was adamant from the start about not recasting T’Challa, believing there was a better way forward for all involved that would first and foremost honor Boseman.
“It’s my job as a filmmaker to do things that I have personal integrity with,” he said. “If I don’t believe in what I’m doing, I’m going to have a hard time getting other people to do their best work. For them to do their best work, they have to believe in it. At the end of the day, the choices we make have to feel truthful to me. When filmmakers make things that don’t feel truthful to them, you can feel it. And I will argue that those projects don’t have a shot at working.”
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever arrives in theaters on Nov. 11th.