Disney Plus is declaring “Wakanda forever.” Black Panther director Ryan Coogler is developing a Wakanda TV series, based on his massive Marvel movie, as part of a five-year overall deal his production company, Proximity Media, signed with Disney (announced in a Marvel Studios press release).
A Wakanda series would join other Disney Plus Marvel titles, including currently-streaming WandaVision and the upcoming Loki and Falcon and Winter Soldier. As part of the deal, Proximity Media will also make television shows for other parts of Disney, which owns networks including ABC, FX, Freeform as well as the streaming service Hulu.
Coogler co-wrote and directed 2018’s Black Panther, which went on to gross over $1.3 billion worldwide and earn seven Oscar nominations. It was the first superhero film to receive a Best Picture nomination and the first Marvel Cinematic Universe film to ever win an Academy Award. The film starred the late Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, aka T’Challa, the king of the fictional nation of Wakanda.
In a statement, Coogler said, “It’s an honor to be partnering with The Walt Disney Company. Working with them on Black Panther was a dream come true. As avid consumers of television, we couldn’t be happier to be launching our television business with Bob Iger, Dana Walden and all the amazing studios under the Disney umbrella. We look forward to learning, growing, and building a relationship with audiences all over the world through the Disney platforms.”
Details on the Wakanda TV series are very thin. All Marvel’s press release said is that it’s “a drama based in the Kingdom of Wakanda.”
In the wake of Boseman’s death, the future of the Black Panther franchise has been up in the air. Coogler is working on making Black Panther 2, likely with a new lead, since the character of T’Challa will not be recast.
But with the rich background set up in the first movie, there are plenty of other areas to mine for a Wakanda series. It could focus on the Dora Milaje, the all-female royal security force, or the reclusive mountain tribe of the Jabari. The show could feature a brand-new cast or bring back familiar faces like Danai Gurira, Winston Duke and Daniel Kaluuya.