After a Hollywood premiere that earned it rave reviews from critics, ‘Black Panther‘ is expected to become one of the most successful films of 2018. It has already exceeded all previous superhero movies in advance ticket sales and many expect the movie to break opening day records. Here are 4 things you should know before watching the movie!
1. Historical and Cultural Milestone
Many are calling the upcoming ‘Black Panther’ film a moment of historical significance. No, it’s not because the Black Panther has an upgraded suit (Oops.. Spoiler… Kidding it’s already in the trailer!) In fact, its because its the first major black superhero movie, featuring a nearly all-black cast, to be filmed on such a large scale. Some of the distinguished cast members are Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Martin Freeman and Oscar winner Forest Whitaker.
‘Black Panther’ also strays from the usual Marvel film by having a distinct Afrocentric theme and being set in Wakanda — a fictional African country — instead of the United States. Also, unlike many movies that depict black neighbourhoods as being crime-riddled and having rundown buildings, in ‘Black Panther’, Wakanda, is depicted as a utopian world, with futuristic technology and enviable riches. To many this movie seems very similar to ‘Wonder Woman’ in the way how ‘Wonder Woman’ seems to empower women.
2. Sensational Soundtracks
While a film’s story and its cast’s acting takes centre stage, the music involved usually takes a backseat and plays an understated role. Some of the best soundtracks in movies are able to subconsciously manipulate your emotions and thoughts to the desired effect of the storyteller.
Titanic had Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’ to add to the romance between the two lovers. Guardians of the Galaxy had the album ‘Awesome Mix Vol 1’ to play on Star Lord’s Walkman to add to his endearing and charismatic personality. Batman vs Superman’s ‘Is She With You?’ (by Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL) helped set the tone for Wonder Woman as she entered the final battle. Thor: Ragnarok had Led Zeppelin’s ‘Immigrant Song’ to add a particular splendour to the fight scenes.
The album for ‘Black Panther’ meanwhile is headed by 12-time Grammy winner, Kendrick Lamar who initially agreed to add just a few songs. After watching some of the film however, Lamar decided to take over the whole album as a curator to create something special. What resulted was an amazing 14-track mix tape involving big names such as SZA, The Weeknd and Anderson.Paak and also a number of South African artists such as Babes Wodumo and Sjava (who sang his entire verse in Zulu) to fall in line with the the Afrocentric theme. Looks like I know what’s going to be my jam for the next couple of weeks!
3. Fanbase Demographic
The backbone of every movie franchise is its fanbase. Here are a few interesting facts about the ‘Black Panther’ fanbase!
For the ardent superhero fan, if someone tells you that superhero movies are only for kids, here’s something to show them. The graph on the left shows that the majority of the followers on the ‘Black Panther’ Instagram page are surprisingly in the age range 25-35.
While superhero movies originally appealed mostly to males and are thought to still do so, the graph on the right suggests otherwise. The ‘Black Panther’ Instagram page has a greater percentage of female followers than male followers which shows the increased popularity of the genre among females over the past few years.
4. Social Media Coverage
Breaking the Twitter record for 2018, ‘Black Panther’ has become the most tweeted movie in the world this year. With over 5 million tweets, ‘Black Panther’ staved off competition from the likes of ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ and ‘Maze Runner: The Death Cure’ which came in second and third places respectively. (Sorry Star Wars and Maze Runner fans!)
The first teaser trailer released on YouTube has amassed over 35 million views!
Take a look at the top 3 most liked posts for Black Panther (@blackpanther)!
With such hype surrounding it, we hope it lives up to its expectations. Once you are back from Wakanda, tell us how you felt about the movie!