A bizarre set of Tweets from actor Morris Chestnut has the Internet awash in speculation that the Marvel superhero The Black Panther may be getting his own solo film, or joining the Avengers in the 2015 sequel to the superteam blockbuster. On Monday, the 44-year-old Chestnut tweeted the following, which he quickly deleted:
“It’s time to get familiar with the Black Panther character.”
Of course, before it was deleted, every geek site in the free world immediately ran with it — pontificating and postulating on Chestnut’s viability and worthiness to portray The Black Panther, aka T’Challa: warrior-king of the African nation of Wakanda. Chestnut’s agent must have blown a gasket and told the actor to erase the tweet before his client completely blew the opportunity, but the damage was done, and the
cat panther was let out of the bag. Today Chestnut clarified things somewhat in a new tweet:
“Not final, #BlackPanther may be in #avengers2 first. RT @jamaal91604133: @Morris_Chestnut Can’t wait to see this movie. #BlackPanther
A while back, I wrote an article listing the top five characters that I would like to see join the team in Avengers 2, and T’Challa was at the top of that list. In addition to being a badass character (he’s essentially Marvel’s Batman), The Black Panther would add some ethnic diversity to the team as well as increase the scope of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Think of Tony Stark going to visit the African kingdom of Wakanda to negotiate with T’Challa for some vibranium (the most powerful metal in the Marvel universe), and how contentious a meeting of those two power players could be!
That being said, I am not a huge fan of Chestnut playing the role. He”s a bit long in the tooth (which isn’t a huge deal breaker considering Robert Downey Jr. is 48 now), but there’s just something…milquetoast about the guy. He’s not a terrible actor…he’s just sort of…there, you know? Nondescript. If it were Joss Whedon I’d get on the phone and grab my Serenity villain, Chiwetel Ejiofor. Now there’s a commanding presence that I could buy into both as African royalty and as a kick-ass martial artist superhero.