During a recent episode of the Jemele Hill is Unbothered podcast, Coogler opened up about how he’s moving forward almost a year after Boseman’s untimely passing. While the actor fought colon cancer for years, he kept his battle private, meaning those close to him on set–like Coogler–had no idea what he was going through behind the scenes.
“I’m still currently going through it,” the director admitted. “One thing that I’ve learned in my short or long time on this Earth is that it’s very difficult to have perspective on something while you’re going through it. This is one of the more profound things that I’ve gone through in my life, having to be a part of keeping this project going without this particular person who is like the glue who held it together.”
He continued, “You spend your life hearing about people like him. For this individual, who is an ancestor now, I was there for it. It’s such an incredible privilege that fills you up as much as it knocks you out. So often as Black people, we have to pick up the pieces after loss.”
Black Panther 2 is slated to come out on July 8, 2022. The President of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige, has already assured fans that Chadwick Boseman’s role would not be recast.
“We’re not going to have a CG Chadwick and we’re not recasting T’Challa,” he said at the time. “Ryan Coogler is working very hard right now on the script with all the respect and love and genius that he has, which gives us great solace, so it was always about furthering the mythology and the inspiration of Wakanda. There’s also the task of honoring and respecting the ongoing learnings and teachings from Chad as well.”