Michaela Coel and Winston Duke have revealed they visited Chadwick Boseman’s grave to “ask for his blessing” before starting filming on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Boseman, who played King T’Challa in the original 2018 film, died of colon cancer in 2020 at the age of 43.
Speaking on The Graham Norton Show, Duke, 35, who plays M’Baku in the Marvel films, spoke about the experience of making another film without Boseman: “It was really just melancholy to step back into all those shoes.
“I was delighted to be back with the rest of the cast but Chadwick left this huge gap, which was really hard to fill and you really felt it.
“Visiting his grave to formally say goodbye and receive his blessing was really great to help him deal with it because it was such a surprise – none of us knew he was ill and when we heard of his death We were just weeks away from shooting.
“The film is deeply about grief and how difficult and messy it is, there’s no perfect way to get through it, and you’re forever changed by it.”
Coel, who joined the cast as Aneka for Wakanda Forever, added: “For me, visiting the grave allowed me not only to see Chadwick from a Marvel perspective, but to understand that this was a friend of the artist and that he was a real human being. loss.”
The I May Destroy You actress and producer also spoke about the physically demanding element of her role in the upcoming film, which is slated to release on November 11.
“I just assumed there would be someone else to do all the fighting, that there would be people for it,” she said.
Adding: “Then they said about starting a boot camp and I was like, ‘Boot who?’ And the training was every day.
“I’ve never done that in my life.”
Duke, who also starred in Jordan Peele’s horror film Us, also spoke about his role in the Black Panther sequel, saying: “I’m doing a lot more – a lot more noise and a lot more humour.
“I was inspired by Brian Blessed. I loved him in Flash Gordon – his character’s work is very similar to mine and I loved how he did it.”
The actor revealed that the barking – which his character has become known for – is a fan reaction.
“I don’t know what they think will happen or why they don’t just say, ‘Hey Winston, I like your work,’ and it’s always in the most awkward places, like a public bathroom,” he said.
When asked if he would bark back at them, he said: “Of course, who am I not to answer the call!”
During the first film M’Baku and his forced tribe members Everett K. starts barking at Ross, played by Martin Freeman.
Other guests on the BBC show included Irish actor Paul Maskall, The Crown star Emma Corinne, comedian Richard Ayoade and singer-songwriter Loyal Carner.
The Graham Norton Show airs on BBC One on Fridays at 10.40pm.