After the tragic passing of its former lead Chadwick Boseman, Black Panther 2 is set to begin filming in Atlanta, Georgia this summer under a new script. Kevin Feige has previously explained the film won't recast Boseman's role, but will instead focus on the other characters of Wakanda.
With only a few months to go until shooting, the film industry of Georgia has been shaken by the passing of a bill that places new voting restrictions in the state, leading many filmmakers to boycott the state.
The “Election Integrity Act of 2021” was passed in the state of Georgia last month and placed many restrictions on the voting process which will likely deter many from participating at all. Some new restrictions included criminalizing providing food and water to those queuing to vote, and banning mobile voting.
The new law has been criticized by many, particularly within African-American communities, as lines are often long in heavily non-white territories, with new restrictions likely to deter many from voting.
Legendary filmmakers like James Mangold and Mark Hamill have both shared their opposition to the passing of the bill, claiming they will not work in the state which is often a hotspot for production.
In response to the action taken by other studios, many have called for Marvel to take similar action and relocate Black Panther 2's planned production in the state capital Atlanta.
BLACK PANTHER 2 WON'T BE LEAVING GEORGIA
In a guest column on Deadline, Black Panther 2 director Ryan Coogler commented on the recent backlash to the Georgian “Election Integrity Act of 2021,” insisting that, despite his own opinions, the production will not be moving state.
Coogler said he has “long looked forward to returning” to Georgia, but found himself “profoundly disappointed” after seeing the bill's “ramifications for the state’s voters.”
After consulting with voting rights activists in the state, the director discovered “many of the people employed by [his] film” are “the very same people who will bear the brunt” of the new voting laws. As such Coogler has decided not to take part in the boycott to avoid taking jobs away from those in the state, but instead to use his “voice to emphasize the effects” of the new restrictions.
A LOGICAL DECISION FOR BLACK PANTHER 2
Despite the controversial new laws in the state, it would be incredibly impractical for Marvel Studios and Disney to relocate its upcoming production just a few months before the cameras will start rolling. Ryan Coogler's decision seems to be a logical one that protects the citizens of the state, given the many jobs that would be lost in moving the filming.
Reports have indicated the Wakandan blockbuster is targeting a July 2021 start for filming the July 2022 release. Little is still known about the film aside from the fact it will be keeping its focus on the other characters of the fictional African country instead of recasting Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa.
Black Panther 2 is set to release exclusively in theaters on July 8, 2022.