Last month when I was in Los Angeles for the world premiere of Avengers Infinity War, I also had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Black Panther Executive Producer Nate Moore. I love getting all nerdy and being able to ask behind-the-scenes questions about the development of films.
Nate talked to us about some of the fab bonus features on the Black Panther home release. “The Crowning of a New King. This is sort of a behind-the-scenes of how we put Wakanda together. It goes through everything from production design to visual effects to cast and story. There’s something called The Warriors Within. This is getting to know Wakanda’s women. The female characters are such a big important part of this film. And our actresses are amazing and how they portrayed the roles. So, you get to see a little bit of the behind-the-scenes of how they brought Okoye and Nakia and Shuri to life, which we think is fantastic. And the third piece is The Hidden Kingdom Revealed. This goes into a little bit of how we crafted the different tribes that make up Wakanda. So, one of our big sort of remits very early on was making sure Wakanda felt as authentic as possible for being this fictional African nation. You’ll get to see some of the real-life references that we used to make sure that Wakanda feels like a place you could actually visit.”
Then we got to have a great Q&A where we could kind of ask Nate anything about the film.
On whether or not Shuri might become Black Panther like in the Comic Books
“It’s definitely a fun possibility. We love that run in the books, and she’s such a great character and really popped out of this movie. I think the sky’s the limit. It’s just sort of what is the right time for that story,” Nate said.
On how they decide which features to decide to include as bonus materials
The production team has a brainstorming session where people get to pitch ideas of what they think is interesting. It's also based on what footage they have that they can show. They always collect the typical ones like deleted scenes and gag reels, so they are collecting that footage all through production and post-production.
“At the end of the day, once we kind of get a sense of what people are responding to sort of out in the world, we can craft our features based on that,” Nate said. “This movie just happened to have a lot of really in-depth stuff because the building of Wakanda was so complicated. Unlike other films like Captain America, which I loved and worked on, but that world is a bit more familiar to audiences. So, there’s less to tell. We had a lot of stories to tell from this one.”
There's also an actual roundtable with the writers of the comics, which is a first—Don McGregor who did a run in Jungle Action, Christopher Priest who did sort of a seminal run in the ‘90s and then Ta-Nehisi Coates is doing the run now with Ryan and Joe Robert Cole who co-wrote the movie. Nate thought it was cool to hear what they thought worked and didn’t and things, what they found challenging about the character when they were writing, etc.
On creating Wakanda
Nate discussed the fact that they knew there could be sensitivities over African country rivalries. “I think because in our heads in the storytelling of it all, Wakanda was almost this seat of culture that then all these very specific cultural things spread to the areas in which they are now better known,” Nate said. “But we wanted it to be a celebration of all those things and not a judgment as to one being better than the other. Which I hope was successful.”
On the cookie credit
Nate said the cookie credit was an afterthought once they knew what was happening in Avengers. “A lot of times we find in post…we sort of shift things around or we shoot things in additional photography because we’re not sure. And because the [MCU] sometimes changes so quickly in other films,” Nate said. “For instance, Bucky, the final, final scene we shot in additional photography because we realized what was going to happen in Avengers. And we were like, ‘Oh, we have a great opportunity.' And we wanted to tell the story of, yeah, he was frozen. What happened?”
“Like, ‘Is he still programmed? Is he not? Who helped him? Who does he have a relationship with?' And that was a fun scene because we realized also Bucky very rarely gets to talk to women in our movies for whatever reason he is always with Cap or shooting people. So, that scene was a lot of fun to shoot and again, Tish is it so great. So, Sebastian had a good time.”
Black Panther on Blu-Ray/DVD + Bonus Features
Black Panther is on 4K Ultra HD™, Blu-ray™, DVD, and On-Demand on May 15. It has some mad bonus features about the making of the film and the development of Wakanda, and a Marvel 10 Years featurette.
The First Ten Years: Connecting the Universe
Bonus Features on Blu-ray:
- Director’s Intro
- From Page to Screen: A Roundtable Discussion – Delve into the film’s making
- Crowning of a New King – Explore the world of “Black Panther” in all its color and complexity
- The Warriors Within – Get to know Wakanda’s women and the actors who portray them
- The Hidden Kingdom Revealed – Wakanda’s diverse people
- Wakanda Revealed: Exploring the Technology
- Deleted Scenes
- U.N. Meet and Greet
- Okoye And W’Kabi Discuss the Future of Wakanda
- T’Challa Remembers His Father
- Voices from the Past
- Gag Reel
- Exclusive Sneak Peek at “Ant-Man and The Wasp”
- Marvel Studios the First Ten Years: Connecting the Universe
- Director’s Commentary
o In World Wakanda Tourism Ads
- Come to Wakanda “Before”
- Come to Wakanda “After”
About Black Panther
Marvel Studios’ BlackPanther is a global cultural phenomenon that has thrilled and inspired generations of moviegoers around the globe. Black Panther is the highly celebrated story of T’Challa, a young African prince who takes on the mantle of King and Super Hero. The film has dominated the box office charts emerging as the third biggest movie of all time domestically with over $665 million. Through the 4K Cinematic Universe Edition of BlackPanther, fans will experience the exhilarating adventure in stunning 4K Ultra HD with next-generation high dynamic range (HDR) visuals and Dolby Atmos immersive audio. Disc extras include never-before-seen commentary from director Ryan Coogler; deleted scenes; outtakes; and several making-of featurettes, which detail the Black Panther’s evolution, the remarkable women of Wakanda, the history of T’Challa’s proud nation, and the cosmic origin and technological applications of vibranium. Also included are a roundtable discussion with Black Panther filmmakers and writers; a featurette tracing the countless connections between heroes, characters and storylines within the Marvel Cinematic Universe; and an exclusive sneak peek at Ant-Man and the Wasp. Fans can bring home the phenomenon, packed with light-hearted fun, pulse-pounding action and a powerful message, and watch it over and over again, Digitally in HD and 4K Ultra HD™ and Movies Anywhere now and on 4K Ultra HD™, Blu-ray™, DVD, and On-Demand on May 15.
I was a guest of Walt Disney Studios for an all-expense paid trip to Los Angeles. As always, all opinions are my own.