Chadwick Boseman’s presence continues to be felt by his “Black Panther” castmates, such as Letitia Wright. The actor, who played the titular role in the 2018 blockbuster, passed away in 2020, following a private four-year battle with cancer. He was 43.
While a sequel to the box office hit hung in the balance in the months following his passing, production ultimately began in June 2021. Wright, who plays Black Panther’s younger sister Shuri, said returning to set without Boseman left her questioning how she would manage to carry on with the film in his absence.
“I will always have moments on set of doubt, and I’ll be like, ‘Oh man, I don’t know if I can do this,’ ” she told PEOPLE during the D23 Expo on Sept. 10. In those moments, Wright said the actor would give her the guidance and reassurance she needed. “I could just hear [Boseman] be like, ‘Sister, you’re great. You got this. I’m proud of you.’ That really just kept me moving forward,” she added.
Actor Winston Duke, who plays M’Baku in the “Black Panther” films, added that Boseman was a quietly powerful person. “Sometimes you don’t realize the extent, the amount of space people like that take up until they’re not there. He was one of those people that led by example, and just led by always showing up and putting his best foot forward every day,” Duke said.
The film, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” is said to pay homage to Boseman. When the first trailer was released in July of this year, social media was left in shambles. In it a mural of Boseman as King T’Challa is seen, as well as an emotionally moving scene where Angela Bassett’s character, Queen Ramonda, exclaims that she has lost her entire family.
The highly anticipated films is set to hit theaters on Nov. 11.