Disney Just Teased a New Black Panther Theme Park Expansion

By Savannah Sanders Updated:
Black Panther, Disney castle, Disney logo

In discussing plans for its multi-billion theme park investment, Disney specifically namedropped Wakanda, the kingdom of the MCU's Black Panther, as a possibility. 

This news follows a blitz of theme park announcements at Disney's Destination D23 where the Mouse House revealed Indiana Jones and Zootoopia plans for Animal Kingdom, as well as new details on Disneyland's future King Thanos Avengers ride.

But in signaling its bullish ambitions for the company's parks division, Disney hinted at which MCU franchises it's eyeing for theme park expansion. 

Disney Teased Black Panther For Disneyland Expansion

Black Panther Wakanda

As reported by The New York Times, Disney intends to invest $60 billion over the next ten years to expand its stateside and international parks, as well as the Disney Cruise Line. 

For reference, this doubles the amount the Walt Disney Company invested in the previous ten years which included Pandora - The World of Avatar, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, the Disney Wish, two versions of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge and Avengers Campus, and more. 

While neither Disney CEO Bob Iger nor Disney Parks Chairman Josh D'Amaro confirmed exactly how the $60 billion will be spent, D'Amaro did drop a few hints. 

For instance, the Disney Chairman noted recent films, such as Coco, Zootopia, and Encanto have yet to be fully utilized in the parks. 

But the biggest tease was when D'Amaro referenced one of the MCU's most popular destinations, saying, "Imagine bringing Wakanda to life:"

“Imagine bringing Wakanda to life. In terms of bringing the latest Disney-Marvel-Pixar intellectual property to the parks, we haven’t come close to scratching the surface. And we have learned that incorporating Disney I.P. increases the return on investment significantly.”

Interestingly enough, this isn't the first time Disney hinted at Black Panther theme park plans. 

Former plans for Avengers Campus' future third attraction originally involved a visit to Wakanda

Also, back in 2021, concept art for Disney's DisneylandForward proposal included imagery resembling Wakanda's Mount Bashenga and dedicated ride space. 

It's also worth noting that Disneyland is the best bet for a Black Panther addition as Walt Disney World is contractually prohibited from doing so.  

When Will Disney Confirm Black Panther Park Plans?

While it's true that Disney has a reputation for being vague about its theme park plans, little is ever said by accident. 

Due to prior hints at a Black Panther theme park expansion and now Josh D'Amaro's comments, a Wakanda area - or at least a Black Panther ride - seems more likely than ever. 

Still, Marvel fans shouldn't expect a confirmation or any detailed plans anytime soon as Anaheim isn't expected to vote on DisneylandForward changes until mid to late 2024. 

However, today's comments further point towards the MCU's presence in the parks as a company priority.

And, given the success of Avengers Campus and Disney Cruise Line's Worlds of Marvel, a portion of that $60 billion will no doubt be directed toward future MCU lands, rides, and experiences. 

Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever are both available to stream on Disney+.

- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.