In a packed Captain America: Civil War, Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa stood out from the crowd, drawing both critical praise and fan adoration. Next February, audiences will get to see him lead a movie of his own. Today, Marvel released the first trailer for Black Panther, which is slated for a February 16, 2018 release. Already Twitter is abuzz with praise for the film’s visuals and cast, as well as eager speculation over the plot itself. Even with months left before the film’s release, the hype is incredibly, incredibly real. Below are twelve things that the trailer revealed that excited us the most.
Director Ryan Coogler and cinematographer Rachel Morrison look to have outdone themselves crafting the rich and beautiful world of Wakanda. The trailer is striking not only in it’s use of color but also in the way it visually establishes Wakanda. The culture of the country easily comes through in this one teaser alone, and one can only imagine how magnificent it will be in the final film. The blend of tradition and technology is well-balanced, and the production design is equally stellar. Much like the world of Asgard and then nine realms in the Thor films, Coogler and the Black Panther team faced a challenge in bringing the fictitious Wakanda to life. It seems they have more than risen to the challenge.
Another stunning element of the visuals in the trailer was the standout costume design. From Erik Killmonger’s (Michael B. Jordan) armor to the regalia worn by Wakandan leaders, such as the pictured above character played by Isaach De Bankolé, the costumes match the setting perfectly. The costumes were designed by Ruth E. Carter, a two-time Academy Award nominee who’s work ranges from historical films such as Amistad, Malcom X, and Selma to genre films such as Serenity. She has most definitely outdone herself here, and the film looks to have Marvel’s most stunning costumes yet. Could some awards season buzz for costume design be in the movie’s future?
One of Wakanda’s greatest secrets is that it is perhaps the most technologically advanced country in the MCU’s. This is due in part to Wakanda having a rich store of vibranium, the metal that makes up Captain America’s (Chris Evans) shield. Audiences got a taste of Wakandan technology in Civil War with T’Challa’s powerful Black Panther suit, but Black Panther will bring a new level of futuristic technology to the Marvel ‘verse. There’s a reason that Ulyesses Klaue (Andy Serkis) says that the country was called El Dorado by explorers. Of course, not everything is perfect in Wakanda….
Michael B. Jordan as Erik Killmonger
The trailer gave us a first look at Michael B. Jordan’s villainous turn as Erik Killmonger, an exile from Wakanda determined to overthrow T’Challa’s rule. This marks the third time that Jordan and Coogler have teamed up; they previously worked together on Fruitvale Station and Creed. An Entertainment Weekly article on the trailer said that Coogler is hesitant to reveal the background for Killmonger yet, but that in the comics it is one of the darkest villain origin stories. Marvel movies have often struggled with crafting compelling villains to match their heroes, but between Jordan’s talent and that tease, Killmonger might emerge as one of Marvel’s most frightening and effective villains. He’s also not the only villain to appear in the trailer; we get a brief glimpse of Winston Duke as M’Baku/Man-Ape, as well as M’Baku and Killmonger locked in combat. T’Challa will need all the help he can get to take on this crew of villains.