The Wakandan characters in Marvel’s ‘Black Panther’ spoke to each other in a distinctive accent that was faint enough to be understood by movie-goers. Some characters spoke in an accent identified as being based on South Africa’s Xhosa, and some even the Igbo accent, from Nigeria (like fan-favorite M’Baku).
But in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, star Chadwick Boseman revealed that one of the early possibilities for the conception of his character T’Challa, who was introduced in 2016’s ‘Captain America: Civil War’.
Boseman explained that, while he favored an African accent for the character, Marvel initially proposed that Wakandans would have a British sound. “They felt that it was maybe too much for an audience to take,” he said. “I felt the exact opposite – like, if I speak with a British accent, what’s gonna happen when I go home? It felt to me like a deal-breaker.”
To get the right quality for his accent, Boseman worked with a dialect coach, and the voice of every Wakandan character seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has followed suit.
‘Black Panther’ was co-written and directed by the 32-year-old Ryan Coogler, and is the 18th installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe – and, significantly, the first Marvel film to center on a black superhero and feature a predominantly black cast. Made for $200 million, it debuted in the U.S. on Jan. 29 2017, and logged what was then the fifth-highest-grossing (and is now the sixth-highest-grossing) opening weekend in history, with a haul of $202 million – and then remained atop the box-office charts for the next four weekends.
It now stands as 2018’s highest-grossing movie domestically, with grosses totalling $700 million, and the year’s second-highest-grossing movie worldwide, having taken in $1.3 billion (behind only another Marvel film, Avengers: Infinity War). And, with a 97percent favorable rating on RottenTomatoes.com, it is also one of the year’s 10 best-reviewed films.
Much of ‘Black Panther’s success is attributable to the commanding performance by Boseman as T’Challa, the king who suits up and becomes, when necessary, Black Panther.