Casting Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa in 2018’s Black Panther was a unanimous decision.
Marvel casting director Sarah Halley Finn reveals that they knew "immediately" that Chadwick Boseman was the perfect actor to play Black Panther.
The veteran Hollywood casting director discussed Boseman's casting for the beloved superhero role following the actor's death last week.
Speaking to Vulture, Finn said: "In different projects at Marvel, we’ve had very extensive searches where we’ll see literally thousands of people for a role. But when it came to casting Black Panther, it was unanimous."
Finn added that she and the rest of the Marvel team 'were in absolute agreement immediately' that Boseman was 'the person to play this part.'
"My team at Marvel had seen his body of work and knew his ability to channel this kind of dignity, this grace, this elegance, this regalness with humility and humor and intelligence," Finn added.
Finn revealed that she'd known Boseman even before he played Major League's Jackie Robinson in 2013 film 42. The casting director has seen him during his early career in Hollywood.
According to Finn, seeing Boseman read Drax [in Guardians of the Galaxy] was the turning point for her. Finn said that Boseman is one of those actors with gravitas- something that cannot be faked nor learned and must come naturally to a person. Finn revealed that Boseman carries that strong presence with him, and this became apparent when he read the lines for Drax, portraying it like he was a king.
So when the time comes to cast Wakanda's King T’Challa, Finn and the rest of the Marvel team only had one person in mind: Chadwick Boseman.
Boseman first appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe through Captain America: Civil War in 2016. Boseman quickly became a fan favorite and starred in a solo film, and took part in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame.
Boseman's Black Panther was a big step for Marvel in terms of representation. Black Panther featured a predominantly Black cast with Boseman for the lead role.
The movie was a big success and is now widely considered as one of MCU's best films ever. Boseman was considered the embodiment of Black power. He was an inspiration to young Black children, making them believe that they, too, can be a superhero.
That is why when the news of his death broke last week, everyone was caught in deep sadness. On August 28, 2020, Boseman died after secretly fighting colon cancer for four years. Despite getting diagnosed in 2016, the actor continued to create masterpieces, including MCU films.
Following his passing, fans and colleagues of Boseman began sharing their tribute to the late actor online. Even children all around the world found a way to honor Boseman by holding action figure memorials and posing in 'Wakanda Forever' salute.
"I think people will remember him as a true hero. As with his character, he was a leader in real life and an inspiration. That he was able to radiate power with kindness and warmth is an incredible legacy to leave behind," Finn said.