Tag: Danai Gurira

New ‘Wakanda Forever’ Comic Book Series to Introduce the Dora Milaje to Rest of Marvel Universe

Marvel Studios’ BLACK PANTHER..L to R: Ayo (Florence Kasumba) and Okoye (Danai Gurira)..Ph: Film Frame..©Marvel Studios 2018

via thegrio.com

The Dora Milaje and their black girl magic are being turned into a comic book series thanks to the enormous success of the Black Panther movie. Now we’ll get a deeper look into the lives of the fierce women warriors holding things down in the world of Wakanda.

According to the Hollywood ReporterMarvel Entertainment has enlisted the help of Nigerian award winning writer Nnedi Okorafor to pen the tale of the all-female bodyguard who are the backbone of Wakanda and ferocious protectors of King T’Challa. Okorafor looks forward to bringing the story to life.

“I’m super excited about writing this storyline. Powerful disciplined African women with futuristic spears who faced their shortcomings and changed a nation? Oh heck yeah, I’m so there,” Okorafor told Vogue, which initially broke the news of the new series. “Fans of the Dora Milaje can look forward to seeing them out in the world beyond T’Challa and the Wakandan throne’s shadow. They’ll get to see the Dora Milaje come into their own, while teaming up with the unexpected.”

Okorafora says the storyline will center around the Dora Milaje’s life outside of the Wakanda Kingdom. Can you imagine the kiss-ass ladies kicking it in Manhattan? The story will venture  outside of Wakanda when a threat born in the African nation ends up surfacing in the New York City borough.

If you watched Black Panther then you were likely captivated by the strength and overall badass-ness of the all-women Wakandan army, Dora Milaje. What you may not know is that the five-women crew–led by Danai Gurira‘s character Okoye–is actually based on a real tribe of fighters known as the Dahomey Amazons.

There will be three stand-alone issues on newstatnds and in comic book stores: Wakanda Forever: Amazing Spider-Man, illustrated by Alberto Jimenez AlbuerquerqueWakanda Forever: X-Men and Wakanda Forever: Avengers.

The publisher, editor Will Moss said in a statement, “We’re lucky to have Nnedi on board for this — she’s an incredible novelist, and her recent Black Panther: Long Live the King digital series proved that she’s a great comic book writer too. She’s come up with a crazy-tough problem for the Dora Milaje to solve — but if anyone can, it’s these crazy-tough women.”

Source: https://thegrio.com/2018/03/17/wakanda-forever-introduces-the-dora-milaje-to-the-rest-of-the-marvel-universe/

“Black Panther” Tops U.S. Box Office Again with $108 Million in Second Weekend

(Image Courtesy Disney/Marvel)

by Dave McNary via Variety.com

Disney-Marvel’s Black Panther is dominating the box office with an astounding $108 million at 4,020 North American locations — the second-highest second weekend ever behind “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

Black Panther, starring Chadwick Boseman, has now grossed $400 million domestically in its first 10 days. Only “The Force Awakens” has reached that milestone faster. It’s also grossed $304 million internationally.

The superhero film, the 18th in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, declined only 46% from its opening Friday-Sunday — underlining the film’s massive appeal among moviegoers. “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” set the second weekend record with $149 million in 2015, and Black Panther topped the second weekends of 2015’s “Jurassic World” at $106.6 million, and 2012’s “The Avengers” with $103 million.

Black Panther, directed by Ryan Coogler, has caught on with moviegoers this month in a way that few other titles have in Hollywood’s recent history — blowing past last month’s tracking that showed it would open in the $100 million to $120 million range. It’s notched an A+ Cinemascore — becoming only the second Marvel film to do so — and has dazzled critics with a 97% “fresh” score on Rotten Tomatoes. The film also stars Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya and Letitia Wright.

ComScore’s PostTrack-Screen Engine scores of the audience for the second  weekend show support among moviegoers far above average with 69% rating the film as “excellent” and another 23% as “very good.” And it’s done so outside the traditional summer and holiday season corridors for blockbusters, noted Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with comScore.

Black Panther continues to elevate the month of February to summer-style blockbuster status with a second weekend that represents only the third time that a film has posted a $100 million plus weekend performance during the month (behind only its $202 million debut and ‘Deadpool’s’ $132 million opening in 2016),” he said. “And with a North American cume through Sunday of $400 million, it is the highest grossing film ever released in the month after just 10 days in theaters beating the long-standing $370.3 million record held by 2004’s ‘The Passion of The Christ.’”

Demographics of the second-weekend audience were 33% African-American, 37% Caucasian, 18% Hispanic, 7% Asian and 5% others, according to comScore. The opening weekend was 37% African-American, 35% Caucasian, 18% Hispanic, 5% Asian and 5% other.

To read more, go to: http://variety.com/2018/film/box-office/black-panther-box-office-game-night-1202709952/

It’s Official: ‘Black Panther’ Tops ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ in Historic $242 Million 4-Day Opening

Disney-Marvel’s Black Panther” is re-writing the record books, topping “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” for the second-highest four-day domestic opening of all time, with $242 million at 4,020 North American locations.The superhero pic set a record for top Monday domestic gross ever, with $40.2 million, edging the previous high set by “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” at $40.1 million. The Monday total came in $7 million above the studio’s projections and lifted the four-day haul to $242 million.

Black Panther” has grossed the second-highest four-day total of all time, behind only “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” at $288.1 million and $400,000 ahead of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

Disney also reported Tuesday that the international total has reached $184.6 million to lift the worldwide take to $426.6 million, led by South Korea at $27.1 million and the U.K. at $26.7 million.

The tentpole, starring Chadwick Boseman and directed by Ryan Coogler, has blown past its original tracking. The film, which carries an estimated $200 million production budget, had been tracking to bring in between an impressive $100 and $120 million when first projections emerged on Jan. 25.

Since then, “Black Panther” has become a must-see event as it’s veered into record-setting territory and has continued to shatter all projections since then. It has the highest three-day debut ever for a February film and the fifth-biggest of all time behind only “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” at $248 million, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” at $220 million, “Jurassic World” at $208.8 million, and “The Avengers” at $207.4 million.

“Black Panther” has demolished the record for the largest Presidents Day weekend, blowing past “Deadpool’s” 2016 mark of $152 million.

Source: http://variety.com/2018/film/news/black-panther-box-office-tops-star-wars-last-jedi-1202704917/

Essence Magazine to Honor ‘Game-Changers’ Haddish, Waithe, Among Others at Black Women in Hollywood Awards

Tiffany Haddish is one of four women being honored at the March 1, 2018 event in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File) (Associated Press)
by Associated Press via washingtonpost.com

NEW YORK — “Girls Trip” changed the game for Tiffany Haddish, and now she’s being honored as one of Essence Magazine’s “game-changers” at its annual “Black Women in Hollywood” awards.

“Girls Trip” was one of last year’s big hits and made Haddish a breakout star. The comedian is one of four women being honored at the March 1 event in Beverly Hills, California.

“The Chi” creator and “Master of None” star Lena Waithe will also be celebrated; she became the first black woman to win an Emmy for comedy writing last year.

Danai Gurira of “The Walking Dead” stars in the upcoming “Black Panther.” Gurira also created the Tony-nominated “Eclipsed,” among other works. Tessa Thompson broke new ground in her role in last fall’s superhero hit “Thor.”

Essence magazine editor Vanessa De Luca says the honorees are “raising their voices to benefit all women.”

Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/celebrities/essence-honors-game-changers-haddish-waithe-among-others/2018/02/06/54083e84-0b46-11e8-998c-96deb18cca19_story.html?utm_term=.ad9ee8c26f95

Chadwick Boseman and Ryan Coogler on How ‘Black Panther’ Makes History | Variety

Black Panther Variety Cover
CREDIT: ART STREIBER FOR VARIETY

by Ramin Satoodeh via Variety.com

Chadwick Boseman struggled to catch his breath after he was cast as Black Panther. When he first tried on his spandex suit for 2016’s “Captain America: Civil War,” it felt too restricting. “It was suffocating,” recalls Boseman. “Literally, it closed off every possibility of air getting to you. I was in it, put the mask on. I said, ‘Hey, you got to get me out of this!’” By the time he headlined his own movie, as the first black Marvel superhero with his name on the poster, Boseman was more comfortable in his re-engineered costume. “I think it begins to feel like skin after a while,” says the 41-year-old actor. “But it takes time to get to that place.”

The same can be said for Disney’s long-awaited tentpole “Black Panther,” which opens in theaters on Feb. 16. For decades, actors, directors, producers and fans have wondered why Hollywood was so slow to bring black superheroes to the big screen. It’s not that there weren’t attempts along the way. In the ’90s, Warner Bros. had originally tapped Marlon Wayans to portray Robin in a “Batman” movie, before Chris O’Donnell landed the sidekick role. Wesley Snipes starred in the vampire superhero franchise “Blade,” which spawned two sequels. In 2004, Halle Berry headlined “Catwoman,” which was ridiculed by critics and tanked at the box office. And 12 years later, Will Smith, the co-star of the juggernaut “Men in Black,” popped up in “Suicide Squad” as the under-seen assassin Deadshot.

“Black Panther,” directed by Ryan Coogler, is a movie that doubles as a movement, or at least a moment that feels groundbreaking in the same way that last year’s runaway hit “Wonder Woman” inspired millions of women. “Panther” marks the first time that a major studio has greenlit a black superhero movie with an African-American director and a primarily black cast, including Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira and Letitia Wright as Shuri, the princess of the fictional African country Wakanda.

The reality of this milestone isn’t lost on Coogler, the 31-year-old director of the Sundance darling “Fruitvale Station” and the “Rocky” sequel “Creed.” “I think progress comes in ebbs and flows,” Coogler says. “I hope things continue to open up. As more content gets made, more opportunities like ours can come about for folks. But you’ve got to put your foot on the gas when it comes to that or things can go back to where they were.”

“Black Panther” chronicles an origin story for a Marvel character who first made his debut in the comic books in 1966. On the big screen, he’s a warrior named T’Challa, who returns home to an Afro-futuristic country to inherit the throne as king. The release of the movie coincides with a crossroads in America. Racial tensions are heightened as a result of a president who continually makes reprehensible remarks about immigrants from nonwhite countries. “Black Panther” also arrives on the heels of #OscarsSoWhite, the two consecutive years (2015 and 2016) that the Motion Picture Academy failed to nominate any actors of color for awards.

Anticipation for the release of “Black Panther” is much higher than for the last outings from Batman and Thor. In May 2016, the hashtag #BlackPantherSoLIT started trending on Twitter as casting details around the movie emerged. “Panther” is poised to break box office records for February, a typically quieter time as audiences catch up on romantic comedies around Valentine’s Day. Marvel’s latest crown jewel is tracking to gross an estimated $150 million on its opening weekend. Strong business for “Black Panther,” which cost nearly $200 million to produce and roughly $150 million more to market, would send a clear message to the movie industry that certain communities are still widely underserved. While domestic ticket sales plummeted last year, the number of frequent African-American moviegoers nearly doubled to 5.6 million in 2016, according to a survey by the Motion Picture Assn. of America.

Some are paying attention. “Representation matters,” says Alan Horn, chairman of Walt Disney Studios, which owns Marvel. “It’s a powerful and important thing for people to know they are seen and to see themselves reflected in our films and the stories we tell.” Horn believes that “Black Panther” is part of a wave of change. “In terms of gender diversity, we’ve done very well,” he says, pointing to his studio’s own roster that includes “Beauty and the Beast,” “Coco” and the upcoming live-action “Mulan.” “When it comes to diversity reflecting color and ethnicity, I’d say yes, you will see more.” Continue reading “Chadwick Boseman and Ryan Coogler on How ‘Black Panther’ Makes History | Variety”

Angela Bassett Joins Cast of Marvel’s ‘Black Panther’ Movie

Angela Bassett
Angela Bassett (JIM SMEAL/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK)

article by Justin Kroll via Variety.com

“American Horror Story” star Angela Bassett has joined Marvel’s “Black Panther,” playing the mother of the title character.

Michael B. Jordan, Forest Whitaker, Lupita Nyong’o and “The Walking Dead’s” Danai Gurira are also part of the ensemble cast. “Creed” helmer Ryan Coogler will direct.

Chadwick Boseman will play T’Challa, the prince of the African nation of Wakanda, who must take over the throne after his father’s murder. Marvel unveiled the character in “Captain America: Civil War” last May and his standalone film hits theaters on Feb. 16, 2018.

Production is expected to start in the first quarter of 2017.  Joe Robert Cole is co-penning the script with Coogler. Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige is producing the movie.

This marks Bassett’s second turn down the comic book avenue having previously appeared in DC’s “Green Latern” movie starring Ryan Reynolds.

Bassett recently reprised her role as Secret Service Director Lynne Jacobs in “London Has Fallen.” On the small screen, she was just seen on “American Horror Story: Roanoke.”

To read more, go to: http://variety.com/2016/film/news/angela-bassett-cast-in-marvel-black-panther-1201923837/

“Walking Dead” Actress Danai Gurira Wins Whiting Writing Award

Danai Gurira, best known for her role of Michonne on AMC’s The Walking Dead, has been awarded the Whiting Writers Award.

For those who may not be familiar, Danai Gurira, who made her Broadway debut in 2010 in Joe Turner’s Come and Gone by August Wilson, is an accomplished playwright in her own right.  She co-wrote In the Continuum with Nikkole Salter which received the Obie Award and Outer Critics Circle Award for writing.  Gurira also received a Helen Hayes Award for her performance in In The Contiuum.  Other work written by Gurira includes Eclipsed and The Convert.

Another woman of color honored was Sharifa Rhodes-Pitt a non-fiction writer.  She graduated from Harvard and was a Fulbright Scholar

Continue reading ““Walking Dead” Actress Danai Gurira Wins Whiting Writing Award”