Gaspar Noe Hated ‘Black Panther,’ Thought It Was ‘as Bad as ‘Star Wars”

“Climax” director Gaspar Noe isn’t hopping on the “Wakanda Forever” train any time soon. In an exclusive interview with Variety at the Cannes Film Festival, the Argentine filmmaker said he could only watch about 20 minutes…

“Climax” director Gaspar Noe isn’t hopping on the “Wakanda Forever” train any time soon. In an exclusive interview with Variety at the Cannes Film Festival, the Argentine filmmaker said he could only watch about 20 minutes of “Black Panther” before deciding to walk out. “I tried ‘Black Panther,'” he said. “I escaped from the cinema after 20 […]

Gaspar Noé Explains His Hatred For ‘Black Panther’: ‘I Had to Escape the Cinema After 20 Minutes’

In an interview with Variety, Noé also championed full frontal male nudity and criticized the press for making a big deal about seeing male genitalia on screen.

Gaspar Noé is having one hell of a Cannes 2018. Not only is the director earning some of the best reviews of his career for his new film, the drug trip dance musical “Climax,” but he also won top honors at Directors’ Fortnight by earning the Art Cinema Award. The “Climax” premiere went shockingly smooth for such a polarizing director like Noé, but it leave to his press interviews from Cannes to provide the shock we’re used to experiencing.

In a new interview with Variety, Noé shared an extremely unpopular opinion: He hates “Black Panther.” The director admitted that he is more attracted to documentaries than he is to “comedies, action movies, science-fiction movies,” all of which he calls “so predictable,” and when asked about “Black Panther” specifically he said he couldn’t even make it past the 20-minute mark.

“I tried ‘Black Panther.’ I escaped from the cinema after 20 minutes,” Noé said. “I thought it was as bad as ‘Star Wars.’ I hated ‘Star Wars.’ I hated the R&B music [in “Black Panther”]. The music was so bad that I had to escape. But you know which one I like? What’s the name of the Denis Villeneuve movie? ‘Arrival.’ That one was good.”

So what movies does Noé enjoy? The director shared another unpopular opinion earlier in Cannes when he told Vulture that he “couldn’t stop laughing” during Lars von Trier’s serial killer drama, “The House That Jack Built.” The movie caused extreme outrage over its graphic violence against women, children, and animals, but the brutal killings were comedic for Noé, which isn’t surprising given that he’s courted controversy in the past for filming rape scenes and explicit sex scenes.

“I thought it was so funny!” Noé said about watching “The House That Jack Built” at Cannes. “Lars von Trier has a very cold humor, but I enjoyed it so much. It’s like a Todd Solondz movie, so dark. All the sadistic scenes were so funny that people were staring at me because I couldn’t stop laughing.”

Noé also spoke to Variety about full frontal nudity. He criticized the American press for constantly asking him about all of the penises in his last film, the erotic 3D drama “Love.” Noé said the penis is “a nice part of the body, like my hand, like my nose,” and it deserves to be seen more without fanfare or headlines being written about it.

“Even good film critics were asking me, ‘Why did you need to show a penis in your movie? Why do you need to show the face of the devil?'” Noé remembered about the “Love” press tour. “Come on! I have a penis. The guys who were asking me those questions have a penis. Why is it in American culture, the penis is the face of all evil in this world? If your dad didn’t have one and didn’t use it with your mom, you wouldn’t be here.”

“It’s the source of life,” he continued. “It’s not the source of death. Weapons are the source of death. In every American movie, there are machine guns, whatever. Even on Instagram, why can you not show an erect penis? It’s a nice part of the body, like my hand, like my nose.”

Following its Directors’ Fortnight victory, “Climax” will open in theaters in the U.S. via A24. The studio has not yet announced a specific date.

‘Black Panther’: The 10 Most Interesting Things We Learned From Ryan Coogler’s Director Commentary

There’s a reason that “Black Panther” is the best of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies — it goes beyond just being a superhero movie to become a politically charged, symbolic, expertly crafted movie. There’s plenty to pick up while watching “Black Panther,” but if you want the full deep-dive experience, watching the home video release with Director and Co-writer Ryan Coogler’s commentary is the way to go.

Coogler and Production Designer Hannah Beachler, who joins him on the commentary, offer a ton of fascinating insights into “Black Panther” and looks behind the scenes, and into the minds of what the filmmakers as they were creating the movie. Here are the 10 things we found most interesting about “Black Panther” thanks to the commentary.

The use of color is essential to the story

Anybody who watches “Black Panther” can see that how color is used throughout the movie is an essential part of the production design. Wakanda is a vibrant place because of it, for one thing, and how color is used in sets and costumes gives “Black Panther” its intrinsically African feel. Beyond just the obvious application of colors to certain characters that help identify them — T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) in black, Okoye (Danai Gurira) in red and Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) in green — Coogler made heavy use of color symbolically, too. Purple is used for spirituality and royalty, for instance.

Also Read: No, ‘Black Panther’ Was Not Named After the Black Panther Party

The color that might be used most in the movie, blue, designates colonialism throughout the movie, which is why it’s an essential part of the costumes for Klaue (Andy Serkis), Ross (Martin Freeman) and, of course, Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). The London scene in particular, where Killmonger and Klaue steal vibranium from an exhibit, is awash in blue. Coogler said the scene even has a slight blue filter applied to it, to really give the whole sequence a specific symbolic feeling.

That London scene had a real-life inspiration

The introduction of Killmonger is his visit to a London museum, where he has poignant interaction with a white curator as she tells him about African history and artifacts. Killmonger plays along with her for a bit, allowing her to show off her expertise, before schooling her on Wakanda, and the fact that she doesn’t actually know what’s in her museum’s collection.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’: Here’s What the Comics Might Tell Us About Tony Stark’s Kid

In the commentary, Coogler said that moment preceding the heist, which plays heavily into the film’s themes of colonialism, was based on a real incident. He said he and his wife experience something similar in a museum — without the following theft and shootout, of course.

The succession fight was inspired in part by Steven Spielberg’s film “Lincoln”

The fight for succession in Wakanda, in which the king must entertain any challengers in a potential fight to the death, pulls double-duty in “Black Panther”: It’s a fun action scene and rooted in tradition, but it also has political overtones of bringing the tribes together and giving them an opportunity to show support, or distrust, in their leadership. Coogler said the animated discussion of politics that occurs when M’Baku (Winston Duke) shows up from the Jabari tribe and calls T’Challa out (before the two men beat the hell out of each other) was inspired by the animated political discussions in “Lincoln,” Steven Spielberg’s movie about the 16th president.

That rhino isn’t a rhino

CGI helps bring the rhinoceros to life when T’Challa visits W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya) and the Border Tribe early in the movie. When W’Kabi feeds the rhino an apple in the scene, the part is actually played by a Clydesdale horse. The horse is “wrapped” in CGI in order to create the rhino, whose name M20. That name came from a real-life rhino Coogler saw at a wildlife preserve when the crew was visiting South Africa to scout locations, calling it “the most impressive thing I’ve ever seen in my life.” Though the real M20 had his horn removed in order to protect him from poachers, it’s preserved in the “Black Panther” version of the animal.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ – James Gunn Reveals What Groot Told Rocket at the End (Spoiler!)

Names and identities matter

Along with colors, names and identities are another big motif throughout “Black Panther,” Coogler said. T’Challa gains strength from his identity as the son of T’Chaka, and from his name, as seen during the coronation fight with M’Baku. Meanwhile, Killmonger echoes the experience of African Americans — he has had a number of names, and a number of different aspects to his identity, some formed by Wakanda and some formed by his life in the Western World. A big part of the story in “Black Panther” is about T’Challa figuring out who he is and what king he’ll be, and that filters down to Wakanda finding its own identity going forward.

Killmonger lost both his parents

Though it’s not really discussed in the movie, Coogler explained that what N’Jobu (Sterling K. Brown) was doing when T’Chaka (Atwanda Kani) found him in Oakland. He was planning a jailbreak to rescue the woman he’d fallen in love with, who was also Killmonger’s mother. Obviously, that mission never went through, since T’Chaka killed N’Jobu in Oakland. Killmonger’s unnamed mother died in prison as a result, which meant the boy wound up an orphan — which makes his anger at Wakanda and T’Chaka for abandoning him even more reasonable.

Also Read: Here’s What ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Could Mean for the Hulk’s Future

T’Challa’s superpower probably isn’t what you think

The powers that make T’Challa the Black Panther are his strength and speed, as well as his bulletproof suit, but those things are only what make T’Challa good at fighting people. In Coogler’s opinion, the ting that’s actually T’Challa’s power — the thing that makes him a hero to Wakanda and triumphant in the end — is his ability to know who to trust, and building strong relationships. He confides in Nakia about T’Chaka, N’Jobu and Killmonger in order to get her advice, and he survives Killmonger defeating him in ritual combat thanks to his previous actions with his family and M’Baku. Coogler describes T’Challa as a strong judge of character and an inspirational leader, and those are the things that ultimately allow him to be a hero. It’s an interesting perspective on the idea of superheroes in general.

Killmonger had a real-life inspiration

Killmonger is a phenomenal villain because he’s often so relatable. Even though he’s a bad guy who is willing to hurt and kill people to achieve his goals, where he’s coming from and what he believes also makes sense. Jordan plays the role by tapping into the pain of what Killmonger has been through — even though he’s fought and killed throughout his life, he’s not happy about it. Coogler said the character was inspired by a real veteran he met in New York, who told him about his experiences as a soldier. “There was a pain and matter-of-factness to it that stuck with me,” Coogler said in the commentary.

Nakia was inspired by Harriet Tubman

The characters of “Black Panther” and Wakanda are informed by history in a lot of ways, as Coogler described them. The scene in which Nakia manages to spirit away Shuri (Letitia Wright) and Romanda (Angela Bassett) is meant to call up Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad, a historic figure who inspires the character of Nakia in a number of ways. The skills Tubman acquired rescuing slaves she later applied as a spy for the Union Army — much like Nakia, who serves Wakanda as a spy and War Dog.

Also Read: After ‘Avengers: Infinity War,’ What in the Hell Happens Now?

Winston Duke improvised that perfect scene shutting down Ross

When the protagonists make their way to the Jabari tribe to escape Killmonger, they seek an audience with M’Baku. As Shuri, Nakia and Ramonda try to convince M’Baku to take the heart-shaped herb and oppose Killmonger, Ross attempts to step up and talk to the leader. M’Baku suddenly starts shouting, invoking the sounds gorillas make, in order to shut down Ross and stop him from speaking. It’s a perfect moment for the movie’s anti-colonialist and feminist themes, since Ross sort of inadvertently steps in to take control from the Wakandan women in the scene, but M’Baku has none of it. Coogler said in the commentary that shouting down Ross and totally preventing him from speaking was an ad-lib by Winston Duke on the day, and it’s definitely one that elevates the scene.

Related stories from TheWrap:

No, ‘Black Panther’ Was Not Named After the Black Panther Party

‘SNL’: The ‘Black Panther’ Ancestral Plane Is Really Annoying for Sterling K Brown

How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

‘Avengers: Infinity War’: Here’s What the Comics Might Tell Us About Tony Stark’s Kid

Everything That Happened in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ May Have Been Part of a Cosmic Test

There’s a reason that “Black Panther” is the best of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies — it goes beyond just being a superhero movie to become a politically charged, symbolic, expertly crafted movie. There’s plenty to pick up while watching “Black Panther,” but if you want the full deep-dive experience, watching the home video release with Director and Co-writer Ryan Coogler’s commentary is the way to go.

Coogler and Production Designer Hannah Beachler, who joins him on the commentary, offer a ton of fascinating insights into “Black Panther” and looks behind the scenes, and into the minds of what the filmmakers as they were creating the movie. Here are the 10 things we found most interesting about “Black Panther” thanks to the commentary.

The use of color is essential to the story

Anybody who watches “Black Panther” can see that how color is used throughout the movie is an essential part of the production design. Wakanda is a vibrant place because of it, for one thing, and how color is used in sets and costumes gives “Black Panther” its intrinsically African feel. Beyond just the obvious application of colors to certain characters that help identify them — T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) in black, Okoye (Danai Gurira) in red and Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) in green — Coogler made heavy use of color symbolically, too. Purple is used for spirituality and royalty, for instance.

The color that might be used most in the movie, blue, designates colonialism throughout the movie, which is why it’s an essential part of the costumes for Klaue (Andy Serkis), Ross (Martin Freeman) and, of course, Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). The London scene in particular, where Killmonger and Klaue steal vibranium from an exhibit, is awash in blue. Coogler said the scene even has a slight blue filter applied to it, to really give the whole sequence a specific symbolic feeling.

That London scene had a real-life inspiration

The introduction of Killmonger is his visit to a London museum, where he has poignant interaction with a white curator as she tells him about African history and artifacts. Killmonger plays along with her for a bit, allowing her to show off her expertise, before schooling her on Wakanda, and the fact that she doesn’t actually know what’s in her museum’s collection.

In the commentary, Coogler said that moment preceding the heist, which plays heavily into the film’s themes of colonialism, was based on a real incident. He said he and his wife experience something similar in a museum — without the following theft and shootout, of course.

The succession fight was inspired in part by Steven Spielberg’s film “Lincoln”

The fight for succession in Wakanda, in which the king must entertain any challengers in a potential fight to the death, pulls double-duty in “Black Panther”: It’s a fun action scene and rooted in tradition, but it also has political overtones of bringing the tribes together and giving them an opportunity to show support, or distrust, in their leadership. Coogler said the animated discussion of politics that occurs when M’Baku (Winston Duke) shows up from the Jabari tribe and calls T’Challa out (before the two men beat the hell out of each other) was inspired by the animated political discussions in “Lincoln,” Steven Spielberg’s movie about the 16th president.

That rhino isn’t a rhino

CGI helps bring the rhinoceros to life when T’Challa visits W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya) and the Border Tribe early in the movie. When W’Kabi feeds the rhino an apple in the scene, the part is actually played by a Clydesdale horse. The horse is “wrapped” in CGI in order to create the rhino, whose name M20. That name came from a real-life rhino Coogler saw at a wildlife preserve when the crew was visiting South Africa to scout locations, calling it “the most impressive thing I’ve ever seen in my life.” Though the real M20 had his horn removed in order to protect him from poachers, it’s preserved in the “Black Panther” version of the animal.

Names and identities matter

Along with colors, names and identities are another big motif throughout “Black Panther,” Coogler said. T’Challa gains strength from his identity as the son of T’Chaka, and from his name, as seen during the coronation fight with M’Baku. Meanwhile, Killmonger echoes the experience of African Americans — he has had a number of names, and a number of different aspects to his identity, some formed by Wakanda and some formed by his life in the Western World. A big part of the story in “Black Panther” is about T’Challa figuring out who he is and what king he’ll be, and that filters down to Wakanda finding its own identity going forward.

Killmonger lost both his parents

Though it’s not really discussed in the movie, Coogler explained that what N’Jobu (Sterling K. Brown) was doing when T’Chaka (Atwanda Kani) found him in Oakland. He was planning a jailbreak to rescue the woman he’d fallen in love with, who was also Killmonger’s mother. Obviously, that mission never went through, since T’Chaka killed N’Jobu in Oakland. Killmonger’s unnamed mother died in prison as a result, which meant the boy wound up an orphan — which makes his anger at Wakanda and T’Chaka for abandoning him even more reasonable.

T’Challa’s superpower probably isn’t what you think

The powers that make T’Challa the Black Panther are his strength and speed, as well as his bulletproof suit, but those things are only what make T’Challa good at fighting people. In Coogler’s opinion, the ting that’s actually T’Challa’s power — the thing that makes him a hero to Wakanda and triumphant in the end — is his ability to know who to trust, and building strong relationships. He confides in Nakia about T’Chaka, N’Jobu and Killmonger in order to get her advice, and he survives Killmonger defeating him in ritual combat thanks to his previous actions with his family and M’Baku. Coogler describes T’Challa as a strong judge of character and an inspirational leader, and those are the things that ultimately allow him to be a hero. It’s an interesting perspective on the idea of superheroes in general.

Killmonger had a real-life inspiration

Killmonger is a phenomenal villain because he’s often so relatable. Even though he’s a bad guy who is willing to hurt and kill people to achieve his goals, where he’s coming from and what he believes also makes sense. Jordan plays the role by tapping into the pain of what Killmonger has been through — even though he’s fought and killed throughout his life, he’s not happy about it. Coogler said the character was inspired by a real veteran he met in New York, who told him about his experiences as a soldier. “There was a pain and matter-of-factness to it that stuck with me,” Coogler said in the commentary.

Nakia was inspired by Harriet Tubman

The characters of “Black Panther” and Wakanda are informed by history in a lot of ways, as Coogler described them. The scene in which Nakia manages to spirit away Shuri (Letitia Wright) and Romanda (Angela Bassett) is meant to call up Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad, a historic figure who inspires the character of Nakia in a number of ways. The skills Tubman acquired rescuing slaves she later applied as a spy for the Union Army — much like Nakia, who serves Wakanda as a spy and War Dog.

Winston Duke improvised that perfect scene shutting down Ross

When the protagonists make their way to the Jabari tribe to escape Killmonger, they seek an audience with M’Baku. As Shuri, Nakia and Ramonda try to convince M’Baku to take the heart-shaped herb and oppose Killmonger, Ross attempts to step up and talk to the leader. M’Baku suddenly starts shouting, invoking the sounds gorillas make, in order to shut down Ross and stop him from speaking. It’s a perfect moment for the movie’s anti-colonialist and feminist themes, since Ross sort of inadvertently steps in to take control from the Wakandan women in the scene, but M’Baku has none of it. Coogler said in the commentary that shouting down Ross and totally preventing him from speaking was an ad-lib by Winston Duke on the day, and it’s definitely one that elevates the scene.

Related stories from TheWrap:

No, 'Black Panther' Was Not Named After the Black Panther Party

'SNL': The 'Black Panther' Ancestral Plane Is Really Annoying for Sterling K Brown

How Will 'Captain Marvel' Play Into That Wild 'Avengers: Infinity War' Ending?

'Avengers: Infinity War': Here's What the Comics Might Tell Us About Tony Stark's Kid

Everything That Happened in 'Avengers: Infinity War' May Have Been Part of a Cosmic Test

With ‘Deadpool 2’ Opening, Marvel Will Approach $1.5 Billion and Continue Grinding 2018 Box Office Into Dust

With the exception of “Solo,” every other film in 2018 is a blip on the Marvel horizon.

With “Deadpool 2” about to debut as the third Marvel film in just over four months, we’re about to learn if it’s too much of a good thing — or, if Mae West was talking about Marvel when she said, “Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.”

“Deadpool” was a February 2016 groundbreaker that led the way to “Black Panther” opening in February 2018. The budget was just $58 million and it was R rated, but the opening weekend was $140 million and it proved to be Fox’s biggest-ever domestic release of a Marvel movie.

So what about this time around? “Deadpool 2” estimates for this weekend are about $150 million. Marvel coordinates release dates among distributors, so it’s curious that this one landed closest to the summer. When Fox released the first “Deadpool,” it had been nine months between Marvel movies; this time, it’s three weeks. “Deadpool 2” will lack its predecessor’s element of surprise; Ryan Reynolds has been very busy providing refreshers on his brand of superhero snark. And reviews are on par; it currently ranks 68 on Metacritic. (The first one came in at 63.)

However, the release of “Deadpool 2” means that Marvel’s world domination of 2018 is almost complete. (“Ant-Man and the Wasp,” opening July 6!) Here’s a look at the continuing saga of how Marvel rewrites box-office rules.

“Avengers: Infinity War”

— Through Monday, domestic box office is up four percent from 2017, with a total gross to date just over $4.3 billion. About $1.25 billion of that comes from Marvel (including a small amount from “Thor: Ragnorak”). That’s 29 percent. Last year, “Beauty” and “Guardians” combined comprised 18 percent. Post-“Deadpool 2,” 2018 will have 10 weekends with films that made over $40 million. “A Quiet Place” opened over $50 million; “Ready Player One,” over $40 million. Everything else belongs to Marvel, with at least four openings over $100 million.

However, the 2018 record belongs to just five films. Last year, 10 different titles each had weekends of $40 million or more, and multiples for “Beauty and the Beast” and “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” brought the total of $40 million-plus weekends to 13. Marvel comprised just three of that 2017 tally.

“Black Panther”

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— “Black Panther” stands at $695 million, a figure redefined the timing for blockbuster releases. In adjusted grosses, it stands as the biggest film in the wide-release era to open before May. (Only a handful of all-time hits like “The Sound of Music” and “The Godfather” were bigger.) Now that it’s streaming and on Blu-Ray, It likely won’t top 2012’s “The Avengers” ($706 million adjusted). Based on IMAX numbers, “The Avengers” also sold more (premium-priced) IMAX tickets — which means “Black Panther” likely sold more tickets overall.

"Avengers: Infinity War"

“Avengers: Infinity War”

Disney/Marvel

— “Infinity War” currently stands near $560 million, and should get just below $570 million in three weeks. That compares to $538 million adjusted for “The Avengers” and $521 million for “Panther.” In three-week totals, it’s second only to “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” It will need an additional $130 million to match “Black Panther,” a bit more to top  the first “Avengers,” and it now must contend with its spotlight-hogging cousin “Deadpool 2” as well as “Solo.” Expect it to be a photo finish.

— By sometime next week, Marvel will likely have the top three releases of the year. These films will have grossed $1.5 billion; to reach the next $1.5 billion, you have to total the grosses of films nos. 4-20. (Let that sink in.) At this point, the only movie that could break the Marvel stranglehold is also from Disney, with “Solo.”

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‘Black Panther’ at Cannes: Ryan Coogler Would Make an All-Women Wakanda Movie, and More

Coogler told a packed Cannes master class that women “are even more important” to Wakanda than the men.

Filmmaker Raoul Peck and Abel Makonnen Tesfaye (aka The Weeknd) were among a May 11 packed house at Cannes’ Bunuel Theatre, where critic Elvis Mitchell spent 90 minutes digging into 31-year-old Ryan Coogler’s extraordinary trilogy of missing-father-and-son films: “Fruitvale Station,” which played Un Certain Regard after debuting at Sundance, “Rocky” sequel “Creed,” and historic blockbuster “Black Panther,” which Cannes played on the beach the night before .

Coogler’s original coming-of-age concept for “Black Panther” was “a lion learning what it means to be king … it was really about a man who had an idealized version of his father and country in his head. Having that broken, he had to pick up the pieces and create something new.” Coogler had never seen an African man like T’Challa, untouched by colonization, either in a movie or in history.

Theres’ no question “Black Panther” changed the rules of what works in Hollywood. Will it effect permanent change? “It’s a business,” said Coogler. “The business is informed by things life is informed by: colonization, institutional bias, racism. The business was built against these things.”

A former athlete, Coogler remembered his father telling him about team owners being afraid of putting black and hispanic players on the field. “Would people come to the games? There was a time when there were no black people in the NBA; people thought people would not come to the games. I was born in ’86; I turn on the TV and think everybody in the NBA is black. That’s the world I grew up in. For me, why can’t film have more black movies? People said, ‘Maybe these films won’t travel.’ We don’t know if that’s the case. It was great to have partners in Marvel and Disney who were excited as well. We didn’t feel like we are the only ones banging the drum.”

But will it change the way people make the decisions? “I just hope that it changes, man. It’s got to change,” Coogler said. “(David) Fincher says film is fashion; nobody really knows what works, but people will chase what has worked before. I hope that we can leave the business in a better way than we found it. I like to think that there will be more opportunities.”

To some extent the Wakanda fantasy of a hidden, fully actualized, never-colonized, ancient but high-tech African kingdom sprang from the mind of Coogler, who was trying to recapture the excitement he felt when he first visited South Africa. He was struck by how much of his Oakland family’s rituals had their roots in African culture.

casino royale

“Casino Royale”

When Coogler first met with Marvel (after they parted ways with his chum Ava DuVernay), execs told him they wanted “Black Panther” to be Marvel’s James Bond franchise. So he checked out all sorts of Bond movies (“Casino Royale” is his favorite), but his take on the only Marvel comics about characters of color was more nourished by Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather” gangster trilogy — another film about a man from a secret country who steps into a position of power when his father dies, and tries to find his place.

“Black Panther” is also a crime movie about a shadow organization, Coogler said. He was worried to tell anyone that, though, because they might think he was “aiming too high. With art, some stuff is sacred, for good reason.” (Other movies that influenced “Black Panther” included Oscar-nominees “Timbuktu” and “Embrace of the Serpent,” as well as “Planet Earth.”)

Working with co-writer Joe Robert Cole, Marvel was open to letting Coogler weave a complex tapestry of Afro-futuristic entitlement — with T’Challa surrounded by powerful women. The Wakandans “can’t afford to repress any part of society,” said Coogler. “It’s ancient and new. You’ve got to bring the past and the present into the future.”

The filmmaker wanted to butt the two fundamentally different characters T’Challa and Killmonger against each other. “Those conversations are among the most important in the film,” he said. “T’Challa is a black man that doesn’t exist. Colonization affected every black person who lives today, who is touched.”

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover UsageMandatory Credit: Photo by Marvel/Disney/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (9360960cr)Ryan Coogler, Chadwick Boseman"Black Panther" Film - 2018

“Black Panther”

Marvel/Disney/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

T’Challa confronts an American culture in which young black men like Killmonger (Jordan) embrace the likelihood that they may die before they reach 25. (Coogler compares self-created human super-villain Killmonger to “a poor Batman” who invents his own weapons.) “Death is constantly around us,” said Coogler. “The trans-Atlantic slave trade represented a type of death for us, of who we were, taught us that we couldn’t be who we were again.”

So far, Coogler’s worked only with women cinematographers on all three of his films. Rachel Morrison was the best DP he could get for “Fruitvale” — “she turned out to be phenomenal in every way and our dispositions matched” — and while he tried to get her for “Creed,” she was too pregnant at the time, so he shot with Maryse Alberti, who shot “The Wrestler” for Darren Aronofsky. Oscar-nominated Morrison (“Mudbound”) returned for “Black Panther.”

The high-powered women are even “more important to Wakanda” than the men, said Coogler, who is open to devoting a movie about them and admires Roxanne Gay’s “War of Wakanda” comics that let the women drive the story. The chunk of the film when the women believe that their king is gone is Coogler’s favorite in the movie: “You feel like you are watching something fresh and new. These actresses could easily carry their own movie. We had an embarrassment of riches. I would watch a movie with just them. That would be amazing if that opportunity came up.”

He had to learn how to communicate with his Oakland accent, he said, to a cast from all over the diaspora, from Newark-born Jordan to Mexican-Kenyan Lupita Nyong’o and Idaho-born, Zimbabwe-raised Danai Gurira. “I’d say something to Michael or Chad, they’d get the first time,” he said, “And Danai would say, ‘What?'” Eventually, they all got the hang of each others’ way of speaking.

“Black Panther”

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On the first day of shooting, in which little boy Killmonger plays basketball in Atlanta, subbing for Oakland — Coogler found out that Martin Luther King was buried in the church next door, and was introduced to his daughter. “It was moving. She looked just like him.”

As he went through one daunting day after another — “it was hard, man” — he tried to stay in touch with the child who delighted in reading the comics, who would never believe he would grow up to direct the movie. “You find the kid in yourself to keep moving,” he said.

Disney’s high-wattage premiere of “Black Panther,” he told Mitchell, “was intense.” He had 50 family members there and met many new people in fancy outfits like Issa Rae. “It felt like the family reunion for a family you didn’t know you had yet.”

Next up: Coogler doesn’t know what he’s doing next. But as the hottest director in Hollywood, while a “Black Panther 2” seems inevitable, he has his pick of projects. (Long-in-the-works New Regency/Plan B project “Wrong Answer” with Jordan did not come up.) Coogler is open to doing more adaptations. “I’d love to do something original,” he concluded.

Michael B. Jordan Kept a Killmonger Diary While Filming ‘Black Panther’

Michael B. Jordan told Stephen Colbert about the “dark” backstory he created for his villainous character, Erik Killmonger, in this year’s record-breaking Marvel Studios film ‘Black Panther.’read more


Michael B. Jordan told Stephen Colbert about the "dark" backstory he created for his villainous character, Erik Killmonger, in this year's record-breaking Marvel Studios film 'Black Panther.'

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Disney Credits ‘Black Panther’ Success for Strong Q2 Earnings

Shares of the Walt Disney Co. rebounded after hours on Tuesday after the company reported profit and revenue for the fiscal second quarter that were above Wall Street expectations.

Disney reported per-share earnings of $1.95, up from $1.50 during the same quarter a year ago. Excluding certain items that the company said affect comparability, earnings were $1.84 per share. Analysts expected Disney to report earnings of $1.69 per share, according to estimates gathered by Yahoo Finance.

Revenue in the quarter hit $14.5 billion, up from $13.3 billion last year and above analysts forecasts of $14.1 billion.

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“Driven by strong results in our parks and resorts and studio businesses, our Q2 performance reflects our continued ability to drive significant shareholder value,” Disney CEO Bob Iger said in a statement. “Our ability to create extraordinary content like Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War and leverage it across all business units, the unique value proposition we’re creating for consumers with our DTC platforms, and our recent reorganization strengthen our confidence that we are very well positioned for future growth.”

All of Disney’s revenue segments experienced an increase during the quarter. The most significant boost came from the company’s studio business, which saw revenue increase to $2.45 billion in the quarter, up from $2.03 billion during the same period last year.

During the company’s quarterly conference call with analysts and investors, Iger further praised the impact “Black Panther” and Marvel Studios generally have had on the company’s overall business. The studio and media businesses help fuel the rest of the company, he said, referring to the content coming from those segments.

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“The more popular our IP is, the more in demand it is at our parks,” Iger said during the conference call.

Revenue for the media segment rose to $6.14 billion from $5.95 billion during the same quarter a year ago, while revenue at the Parks business increased to $4.88 billion from 4.30 billion.

Disney shares fully recovered from the minor losses the stock suffered on Tuesday, after President Donald Trump announced the U.S. was withdrawing from the Iran deal.

Iger touted the company’s upcoming streaming service, saying that Disney is focused on developing a service based on quality, not quantity. Iger teased additional announcements and details in the coming months.

Also Read: Comcast Plans Bid for Fox Assets to Undercut Disney Deal (Report)

Iger sidestepped questions about the company’s potential acquisition of a majority of 21st Century Fox’s film and TV assets.

On Monday, reports that Comcast was interested in submitting a counter-offer for Fox that seemed to threaten Disney’s proposed $52 billion bid.

Iger said that Disney still strongly believes in the Fox assets as a necessary addition to Disney’s business moving forward as it looks to build out streaming services with hopes of peddling its content and IP directly to consumers around the globe.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Comcast Plans Bid for Fox Assets to Undercut Disney Deal (Report)

Helen Mirren, Danny DeVito to Voice Characters in Disney’s ‘The One and Only Ivan’

Disney Orders ‘Star Wars Resistance’ Animated Series

Shares of the Walt Disney Co. rebounded after hours on Tuesday after the company reported profit and revenue for the fiscal second quarter that were above Wall Street expectations.

Disney reported per-share earnings of $1.95, up from $1.50 during the same quarter a year ago. Excluding certain items that the company said affect comparability, earnings were $1.84 per share. Analysts expected Disney to report earnings of $1.69 per share, according to estimates gathered by Yahoo Finance.

Revenue in the quarter hit $14.5 billion, up from $13.3 billion last year and above analysts forecasts of $14.1 billion.

“Driven by strong results in our parks and resorts and studio businesses, our Q2 performance reflects our continued ability to drive significant shareholder value,” Disney CEO Bob Iger said in a statement. “Our ability to create extraordinary content like Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War and leverage it across all business units, the unique value proposition we’re creating for consumers with our DTC platforms, and our recent reorganization strengthen our confidence that we are very well positioned for future growth.”

All of Disney’s revenue segments experienced an increase during the quarter. The most significant boost came from the company’s studio business, which saw revenue increase to $2.45 billion in the quarter, up from $2.03 billion during the same period last year.

During the company’s quarterly conference call with analysts and investors, Iger further praised the impact “Black Panther” and Marvel Studios generally have had on the company’s overall business. The studio and media businesses help fuel the rest of the company, he said, referring to the content coming from those segments.

“The more popular our IP is, the more in demand it is at our parks,” Iger said during the conference call.

Revenue for the media segment rose to $6.14 billion from $5.95 billion during the same quarter a year ago, while revenue at the Parks business increased to $4.88 billion from 4.30 billion.

Disney shares fully recovered from the minor losses the stock suffered on Tuesday, after President Donald Trump announced the U.S. was withdrawing from the Iran deal.

Iger touted the company’s upcoming streaming service, saying that Disney is focused on developing a service based on quality, not quantity. Iger teased additional announcements and details in the coming months.

Iger sidestepped questions about the company’s potential acquisition of a majority of 21st Century Fox’s film and TV assets.

On Monday, reports that Comcast was interested in submitting a counter-offer for Fox that seemed to threaten Disney’s proposed $52 billion bid.

Iger said that Disney still strongly believes in the Fox assets as a necessary addition to Disney’s business moving forward as it looks to build out streaming services with hopes of peddling its content and IP directly to consumers around the globe.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Comcast Plans Bid for Fox Assets to Undercut Disney Deal (Report)

Helen Mirren, Danny DeVito to Voice Characters in Disney's 'The One and Only Ivan'

Disney Orders 'Star Wars Resistance' Animated Series