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Arts and Entertainment

Black Panther movie debut builds hype, and local following
Charlotte fans plan for Marvel blockbuster
 
Published Wednesday, January 24, 2018 1:10 pm
by Daniel J. Watson

PHOTO | MARVEL STUDIOS
The cast of Marvel Studios' "Black Panther." The movie, which debuts nationally on Feb. 16, is creating a buzz among comic book fans and African Americans who plan watch parties and other events.

Lifelong Marvel fan Chiagoziem Ngwadom is wired for Black Panther.


Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther,” set to release in theaters on Feb. 16, is one of the most anticipated films of 2018. Charlotte locals cannot contain their excitement and the black community, especially, has taken many steps to prepare for the blockbuster.

“I love, love, love superhero movies, so I think it’s dope,” said Ngwadom. “We have a bunch of black people being represented in a media that wasn’t really so open to giving people of color a forward presence. Of course there have been black superheroes, but if you’ve seen recent Avengers films, you know Falcon is only like a black superhero. He’s a side character with no memorable lines. Black Panther represents a culture that isn’t normally shown.”

Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan and Lupita Nyong’o headline the predominantly African American cast. Additionally, hip-hop superstar Kendrick Lamar was chosen to produce the film's curated soundtrack, “Black Panther: The Album.”

“I think this one is so special just because of the times that we’re living in, specifically race relations,” said Charlotte recording artist Marquise Haddock. “Often times in cinema and media in general, black people are put in secondary roles or cast down, whereas the Black Panther is a king and ruler in [the fictional Africa country of] Wakanda. I think that adds to the anticipation and the hype of the different narrative than we’re used to seeing.”

Black Panther is not the first black superhero to emerge from Marvel – Storm, Blade and Luke Cage have been featured in movies or streaming series. Still, Black Panther is breaking ground weeks away from its release.  

Theaters, businesses and organizations have joined forces to attract larger audiences for Black Panthers.

Davita Galloway, co-founder of Dupp & Swat in Charlotte, organized a GoFundMe campaign for children to see the movie and its empowering message. Proceeds will be used for transportation to and from the theater, admission, snacks and a Black Power sweatshirt for each teen in attendance. Galloway has reached the initial goal of $1,000, but she will keep pushing to get more youth to the theater. The donation deadline is Feb. 5.

On Feb. 17 the Concord Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority will host a Red Carpet event at AMC Concord Mills 24. On Feb. 18, MALIK fraternity will host a silent auction fundraiser and red carpet movie premiere at Studio Movie Grill.

Mosaic Live will host “The Blackest Weekend Ever” and has reserved screens at Regal Cinemas Starlight 14 during opening weekend.

Brea Talley, a junior at UNC Charlotte, believes Marvel’s inclusion will go a long way.

“I feel it will impact younger kids,” she said. “It’s really exciting to see a black superhero you can kind of look up to and idolize, although you can idolize other superheroes but having someone be the same color as you makes it that much easier. Media may realize they need to start incorporating more black superheroes and if they’re not the main characters but having more minorities in movies because representation matters.”

Comments

Wow, Great, This is so special. Is there a place I can learn more about these Red Carpet events
Posted on January 25, 2018
 

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