I was already excited about Black Panther. It’s already shaping up to be my most anticipated Marvel film after Infinity War. To further stack the odds, the Chadwick Boseman film is adding Winston Duke to star as Man-Ape.
Duke will be familiar to Person of Interest viewers. He joins a stacked cast including Boseman as lead character T’Challa aka the Black Panther, Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira.
Variety first broke the news of Duke’s involvement. Marvel has yet to officially make the announcement. It’s possible they’re waiting until next weekend’s New York Comic Con to make a release.
Black Panther doesn’t have an extensive rogue gallery. His main foes are pretty much Klaw, who we saw played by Andy Serkis in Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Man-Ape. Serkis is returning and will be joining Michael B. Jordan, who’s playing the main villain Eric Killmonger.
Man-Ape first appeared in Avengers #62. This was shortly after Black Panther joined the team. M’Baku was the second mightiest Wakandan warrior. Once Black Panther left the country to join the Avengers, M’Baku took over. He initially broke T’Challa’s edict not to kill the white gorillas. M’Baku bathed in the gorilla’s blood and magically gained incredible strength from eating its flesh. Man-Ape will provide Black Panther a physical threat and I can’t wait to see how he’s incorporated into the film.
I’m also pretty excited for the very increased likelihood of getting a Man-Ape Marvel Legends figure in the Black Panther theme wave. I still can’t believe we’re a year out from getting bombarded with dedicated Black Panther merchandise.
Black Panther comes to theaters Feb. 16, 2018.