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Chadwick Boseman Talks Black Panther: ‘He has the Attributes of a hero, but has Difficult Decisions’

Matt Kennedy/©Marvel Studios 2018

Chadwick Boseman is one of the most impactful people to join the MCU, and it’s not just because he’s taking on the role of Black Panther. He is an impeccable actor and will most definitely surpass even our best expectations for a film centered around T’Challa. However, the magic comes from the way he believes in the role and knows how important it is.

Everybody has heard the line, ‘It’s hard for a good man to be king. Sometimes you have to do bad things or you maybe need to do bad things so there’s justice, so there’s peace.

In a recent interview with CNET he spoke about who Black Panther is at the heart of himself and what it’s been like taking on the role of the ‘anti-hero’.

He has the attributes of a hero but has difficult decisions, difficult choices. Sometimes there’s no right answer. Everybody has heard the line, “It’s hard for a good man to be king.” I think there’s a sense of all the complications of being a good leader. At times it feels like “The Godfather.” It’s complicated to do what’s right. It’s complicated to follow the traditions. It’s complicated to do something new. It’s complicated when you have to deal with who should live and who should die.

It can be complicated to do what’s right, and at the heart of the film that’s what we’ll be seeing. Of course, there will be action and excitement but it’s deeper than that. He went on to say something that we all agree with, part of the appeal of Marvel is that they really focus on the people ‘behind’ the superheroes. It’s not just

The thing I love about Marvel, in general, is that they deal with people. They deal with the human being first: Who is inside the suit? Who is the person that obtained this power or this ability?

Once you find out who it is who obtained the power or ability, you want to know how they’ll use it. There’s a fine line between good and evil and even the best intentions can turn sour. Superhero films seem to revolve around that idea and Black Panther will address it in a different way than we’ve seen before.

This movie is about how you use power. What do you do when you get power? In this case, you’re talking about someone taking the throne. But all superhero movies are about a person who has extreme power. They can disappear. They do tricks or they can jump really high. Whatever it is, that ability gives them an advantage. The only difference between a hero and the villain is that the villain chooses to use that power in a way that is selfish and hurts other people.

People are also focusing on the fact that Black Panther is the first major black superhero. Boseman commented on that as well and said it is, of course, a tremendous opportunity. However, it’s not all about him.

It’s just this tremendous opportunity, not just for me but for all of us really to get out of our boxes. It’s not just black people getting out of their boxes. Everybody is excited about the opportunity to do something that we should have already done. People are excited about seeing new stuff, but I think they’re extra excited about seeing stuff they should have seen already.

He went on to say that the film also pulls from other ideologies and he sees it being a big influence that will leave a mark.

It pulls from various ideologies. It pulls from the blacks-in-science idea, from a nationalist idea, it pulls from a collective-world idea. There’s something that will influence people in a particular way. It took all of this time to come to fruition in a larger way, but now the world is right, the world is able to receive that. It’s just a special thing.

Being cast as Black Panther is a special thing in and of itself.

When they call you and say, “So you want to play Black Panther?” if you know what Black Panther is, there’s no way in the world you’re going to say no because there’s a lot of opportunity for magic to happen.

Some of that magic happens by the insanely fierce women in the film, who don’t just stand around looking pretty. They’re as brilliant, strong, and valuable as the men in Wakanda, if not more so. Boseman went on to discuss women in the tech industry, and how they’re often not considered ‘smart enough.’

Do they really think that women are not smart enough? Women are so much smarter than men most of the time. It’s crazy to think that you go to work and all of a sudden you get smarter. When you go home, your wife is obviously smarter than you. She gives better directions. She can multitask better. You know you can’t beat her, whatever it is. It’s like, “I’m not going to argue with any of that.” Your woman is always smarter. She can catch you in your lies.

Black Panther has strong women, strong ideas, and a strong fan base to go along with it. For instance, Boseman mentioned that a kid fighting cancer used Black Panther as his inspiration and that meant the world to him.

I love it. You see how much it means. There was one kid [fighting cancer] who used the Black Panther as sort of his inspiration. He saw himself as a Wakandan, he saw himself as having the spirit of Wakanda in his fight. The fact that he chose you, that’s the world he lives in. It does mean a lot.

You can read the interview in its entirety here. Black Panther hits theaters on February 16th, 2018.

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