Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” is the first in many things, but in one way it’s the last – the last MCU film to come out before “Avengers: Infinity War” launches and kicks off a two-film saga which serves as a conclusion of sorts to ten years of Marvel films and at least five years of direct teasing since the first “The Avengers” in 2012.
That film centers around Thanos and his quest for the six Infinity Stones, five of which have been featured in earlier films (“Avengers,” “Thor: The Dark World,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and “Doctor Strange” respectively).
When the sixth did not appear or get a mention in “Thor: Ragnarok,” it was assumed “Black Panther” would incorporate that element into its storyline. It doesn’t, the movie serving as essentially a standalone film aside from callbacks to events in “Captain America: Civil War”.
Speaking with IGN, Coogler was asked if there were ever any plans to include the final Infinity Stone in his movie. He says:
“I love the Infinity Stones as much as any comic book fan, it’s just Wakanda already has its thing, which is Vibranium. For us, that was special enough, so to throw in something, like another special thing, didn’t feel right. It felt like we should stick with our one MacGuffin for the country and explore that, let that be the important thing because, frankly we didn’t need to have another piece like that. The studio was never really interested in putting a stone in there, either.”
Before the film was screened, theories ran rampant that the missing ‘Soul Stone’ was hidden in Wakanda or tied into it somehow, which would explain why the ‘Infinity War’ trailer showcases a huge alien army descending upon the country. Now though, it seems as if the stone will be revealed in ‘Infinity War’ when that film hits in a little under three months.
Back to “Black Panther” and it is going from strength to strength. Its opening day haul has come in at $75.8 million domestically with the movie now on its way towards a $200 million four-day holiday weekend haul. Along with the strong critical reviews, the film has also received an A+ CinemaScore from audiences – only the second MCU film to do so since “The Avengers”.
Coogler has also done a video this weekend breaking down the key casino fight sequence in the movie. Check that out below: