Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was released back in November 2022, but it’s stayed in zeitgeist in part because there’s a lot of talk about awards. To keep the hype train movie going, Marvel has also put out a podcast where the creatives behind the film discuss various aspects of the production. In “Chapter 2,” Ryan Coogler spoke about the importance of the riverside scene where Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett) and Shuri (Letitia Wright) try to say goodbye to T’Challa before being interrupted by Namor.
As Coogler said on The Official Black Panther Podcast, “These two are just ridiculously talented, man, and they kind of have each other’s numbers, so there’s not a lot of scenes where it’s just them, but the one scene she is the river bank. Well, that’s the scene where I knew if this scene doesn’t work, then we don’t have a movie. Coogler later explained why that scene had to work the way she did: “That’s the whole movie, you know, it’s the whole movie, just because someone’s dead doesn’t mean they’re gone.”
In a movie with so many action sequences like Wakanda Forever, having quieter moments to reflect on current issues is paramount. The film is about overcoming loss and grief, with Shuri wondering how to move on after her brother’s death. The riverside scene is crucial, especially in the context of the film’s final moments. Suffice it to say that Coogler actually knocked it out of the park.