T’Challa is going to be busy when his movie, Black Panther, finally hits theaters. Marvel Studios has cast a third villain for the film: M’Baku, who will be played by Winston Duke.
Meet Black Panther’s Winston Duke and M’Baku
Having just graduate from the Yale School of Drama, Winston Duke is a relative newcomer to the entertainment world, but you might have caught him in his roles on Person of Interest or The Messengers.
In Black Panther, Duke will take on the role of M’Baku, also known as Man-Ape, who grew up in Wakanda with T’Challa. In the comics, when T’Challa went to help the Avengers, M’Baku staged a coup to take over the Black Panther’s throne.
Since we know very little about the plot of Black Panther, it’s hard to speculate on just how M’Baku will fit into the movie. His story and background may or may not match his comic history.
At San Diego Comic Con, actress Lupita Nyong’o revealed that the film would feature two villains coming together to challenge T’Challa’s leadership. M’Baku could very well be one of those villains. However, both Nyong’o and actor Michael B. Jordan were said to be playing villains in the movie. M’Baku makes three.
Could Black Panther be taking his cues from Spider-Man? Several of Peter Parker’s movies were able to feature many villains by giving only a few prominent roles.
Or could Marvel already be setting the stage for a Black Panther sequel? After all, looking at Spider-Man again as a reference, Harry Osborn appeared in many movies before ultimately turning villainous. M’Baku could potentially go down the same path.
Without word from Marvel, it’s all speculation.
Black Panther beyond M’Baku
Black Panther will move the Marvel Cinematic Universe beyond the events of what happened in Captain America: Civil War, where we first saw T’Challa. The movie takes place shortly after Civil War with T’Challa mourning his father.
Screenwriter Joe Robert Cole also said we’ll get to see T’Challa taking command as king of Wakanda. Presumably, that’s when the threats from the movie’s villains will come into play.
Besides M’Baku, Black Panther will feature Michael B. Jordan as Erik Killmonger, whose family was exiled from Wakanda. Killmonger returns with a taste for vengeance against T’Challa.
The villain is said to have help from Lupita Nyong’o’s character Nakia, also known as Malice. She joins up with Killmonger after T’Challa rejects her romantically, something that smacks of sexism and will hopefully be changed in the movie.
Then again, if Nakia’s plot changes, who’s to say M’Baku and Killmonger won’t team up to take T’Challa down? All we really know is that the threat will come from inside Wakanda, and with this many potential villains on board, the Black Panther better watch his back.
Black Panther is scheduled for release on July 6, 2018.