Winston Duke’s character will have a larger role in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, according to reports.
The actor, who plays M’Baku in 2018’s Black Panther, is believed to have a more prominent role in the sequel.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Duke negotiated a “hefty raise” for his return in the sequel after having an “expanded role” in the Black Panther mythos. It’s unclear in what capacity the role will be expanded.
In the original Black Panther, M’Baku leads the Jabari Tribe and challenges T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) to a fight for control of Wakanda. After he loses, M’Baku and his tribe later fight alongside T’Challa against Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) in the film’s climax – earning him a place on the Tribal Council.
The character also made appearances in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame to aid in the fight against Thanos (Josh Brolin).
Production on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever resumed this month after Letitia Wright, who plays Shuri, was injured in a stunt rig accident on-set in August last year.
In a note confirming they were halting production last year, Marvel executives Kevin Feige, Nate Moore and Louis D’Esposito described Wright’s “critical shoulder fracture” injury as “much more serious” than they originally thought.
Wright is also expected to play a bigger role in the sequel following the death of Chadwick Boseman, who passed away aged 43 from cancer in August 2020. Shortly after his death, Marvel confirmed they would not recast his character.
Daniel Kaluuya, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett and Martin Freeman are all set to return for the sequel, directed by Ryan Coogler. Dominique Thorn will also play new character Riri Williams aka Ironheart.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is scheduled to be released in cinemas November 22, 2022.