We said #WakandaForever, and we meant it! Just short of a year after the billion dollar-grossing film Black Panther hit theaters, the film is still enjoying its reign and the cast is finally getting some awards-season love. At the Screen Actors Guild Awards on Sunday, the cast took home the Actor for Outstanding Performance By a Cast in a Motion Picture. This is the first award for any members of the cast for Black Panther.
Flanked by Michael B. Jordan, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong'o, Angela Bassett, Sterling K. Brown, Sydelle Noel, Isaach de Bankole and the colonizer Andy Serkis, the Black Panther himself, Chadwick Boseman, accepted the award on behalf of the cast.
After thanking director Ryan Coogler and the Disney/Marvel producers of the film, Boseman recalled two big questions that the cast was asked repeatedly during their press run: 1) Did you know the impact the film would have? and 2) Has the success of Black Panther changed the way the industry sees Black people?
Quoting Nina Simone's famous song, Boseman said: "My answer to that is, 'To be young, gifted and Black."
With a laugh, Boseman said, "Andy, we include you too."
"To be young, gifted and Black," Boseman continued, "we all know what it's like to be told that there is not a place for you to be featured, yet you are young, gifted and Black. We know what it's like to be told that there's not a screen for you to be featured on, a stage for you to be featured on. We know what it's like to be the tail and not the head," he said, reversing the Bible verse found in Deuteronomy 28:13.
"We know what it's like to be beneath and not above. And that is what we went to work with every day. Not, that we knew we would still be around for awards season or that we knew it would make a billion dollars, but that we knew that we had something special that we wanted to give to the world. That we could be full human beings in the roles that we were playing. That we could create a world that exemplified a world that we wanted to see."
As for whether the film changed the industry, he said, "You can't have a Black Panther now without a '2' on it."
And if Boseman's 5-picture deal with Marvel is any indication, we'll have many more years to hail the king.
— TNT Drama (@tntdrama) January 28, 2019