Ruth E. Carter, the costume designer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, noted that the film’s significant usage of white pays homage to late movie star Chadwick Boseman. Carter stated to Variety the following:
“the white costumes worn at T’Challa’s funeral are an homage to a memorable scene in the first movie, as well as to real African tradition. In the Ancestral Plane, when T’Challa wakes up and sees his father, he’s wearing white. White is a color that’s worn in a lot of funerals in Africa — it’s either bright red or it’s white — and we chose white because it connects us to Chadwick, to T’Challa.”
The Appearance of the new Black Panther
Boseman passed away in August 2020 after a private fight with colon cancer. Soon later, Marvel Studios confirmed that T’Challa would not be replaced and that the role of Black Panther will be taken over by a different character. Carter refused to offer any clues as to which character this will be, although he did discuss some of the problems in developing the new costume. “There was a very serious examination of how to make this person a superhero without transforming them so much that they’re no longer believable as them,” she explained. “This one includes silver and gold components, whereas our hero Chadwick Boseman’s suit was all silver, so it already made the wearer look a lot more dazzling.”
While the identity of the new Black Panther remains to be confirmed officially, the most recent teaser featured the new suit with gold embellishments, adding to long-running suspicion that Shuri, portrayed by Letitia Wright, will take over from her brother. Fan theories revolve on a scene near the conclusion of the trailer that clearly shows a female figure dressed in the new suit, shortly following a shot of Shuri. Other fans have emphasized Shuri’s significance in both marketing and the trailer itself.
Carter returned for the sequel after winning the Academy Award for Best Costume Design for her work on Black Panther. She has also been named the costume designer for Marvel Studios’ Blade, which stars Mahershala Ali. Carter’s other new hurdles for Wakanda Forever featured Riri Williams’ Ironheart armor and enemy Namor’s “weird” look, which director Ryan Coogler regarded as difficult to adapt. “He has these tiny wings on his ankles. He walks about in his undies and has pointed ears. It’s all in good fun, man.”
On November 11, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will be released in theaters.