Namora is one of Namor’s closest confidants, and the ending of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever seems to imply that we haven’t seen her last. Namora appears on land and underwater throughout the film, so her costume required a duality that allowed her to display a fluid fighting style. Ruth Carter, the costume designer on Black Panther and its sequel, understood the challenges of creating a realistic look for Namora. Underwater sequences were planned using a 20-foot water tank, Carter revealed to Variety, and she ended up using weights in the costumes to emphasize the lively aesthetic.
With all the extra weight, it makes sense that Cadena was concerned. The actor admitted that while the costume was gorgeous, the mechanics of the look were daunting at first. When it came time for Cadena to wear the outfit, she was concerned that its bulk would weigh her down in the water.
“The headgear is very heavy and underwater you can feel the beauty in the costume, in the moves and in all those things,” Cadena explained on the Cup of Soul show. “But the first time for me was like, ‘This costume is going to kill me underwater.'”
Ultimately, the costume helped inform Cadena of Namora’s inner workings, and her scenes flowed smoothly.