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‘Black Panther’s’ record-breaking premiere makes its way to Gateway

Producer Nate Moore, Director Ryan Coogler, USAF Col.(Ret.) Charles McGee and Costume Designer Ruth E. Carter pose with a black panther costume before a Q&A before a screening of Marvel Studios’ Black Panther at The National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC on February 11, 2018. Credit: Courtesy of TNS

The excitement around the new “Black Panther” movie is touching down near campus Saturday, with the Department of African American and African Studies collaborating with the Student Life Multicultural Center to hold a screening of the film at the Gateway Film Center.

After the screening, Simone Drake, a professor of African American and African studies, will be leading a discussion on black resistance and the power of black imagination.

“I expect this film to be groundbreaking for this superhero genre,” Drake said.  

The post-screening discussion will give attendees an opportunity to express their feelings and opinions of the film. Queena Prince, a third-year in sociology and public affairs, said she was curious to hear the perspectives of other nonblack students.

Set to debut Friday, the revolutionary film is estimated to earn $170 million in the first weekend release, breaking the Presidents’ Day weekend record set in 2016 by “Deadpool” and in 2015 by “Fifty Shades of Grey,” according to Variety.

On Jan. 15, Fandango reported that the first 24 hours of ticket presales for “Black Panther” were the largest ever for a Disney-Marvel film. The entertainment company later revealed that the movie became the highest pre-selling superhero movie in history.

The “Black Panther” cast is filled with critically acclaimed actors, including Chadwick Boseman, Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett and Michael B. Jordan. The film’s soundtrack, which debuted last week, was co-produced by Grammy Award-winning rapper Kendrick Lamar, and features artists such as The Weeknd, Travis Scott and 2 Chainz.

“Black Panther’s” release comes amid Black History Month, which goes along with the movie’s intention to showcase African-American actors in Hollywood.

“This is to prove that black people can do stuff in media, in movies and art as a unit instead of having stereotypical roles like ‘the token black guy,’” Prince said.

Drake said students also are planning screening parties and post-screening get-togethers to celebrate the film’s release. Drake said she knew of one student who is getting an outfit made in Nigeria to commemorate the premiere.

The buildup for the “Black Panther” movie began back in 2016 with the appearance of its eponymous character in “Captain America: Civil War.”

The “Black Panther” screening will take place at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Gateway Film Center, followed by a discussion in the MLK Lounge in Hale Hall. Admission is free, but tickets are required and available online.

Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the screening will take place Friday. In fact, the screening will be held Saturday. 

One comment

  1. “This is to prove that black people can do stuff in media, in movies and art as a unit instead of having stereotypical roles like ‘the token black guy,’” Prince said.

    I guess this she has never heard of Sidney Poitier, Billy Dee Williamas, James Earl Jones, Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, Samuel L. Jackson, Forest Whittaker, Will Smith, Cuba Gooding, Djimon Hounsou, Ving Rhames, Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor, Gregory Hines, Yaphet Kotto, Louis Gossett Jr., Danny Glover, Wesley Snipes… I could keep going but I guess these are all “token black guys”

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