Marvel reportedly "replacing" Shuri as Black Panther; successor already decided

A new report claims that Shuri will be passing the Black Panther mantle to another hero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
A scene from Marvel Studios' Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL.
A scene from Marvel Studios' Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL. /

The Black Panther is one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's greatest heroes. There have been multiple characters to hold the mantle since the warrior's introduction. King T'Chaka was once the Panther before his son, T'Challa, took over the legacy. His sister Shuri then became his successor and she is the one who currently holds the mantle in the MCU.

Of the three, it was T'Challa that played the most significant role. Chadwick Boseman's heartfelt performance made us all fall in love with T'Challa, and his portrayal of the character - particularly in 2018's game-changer Black Panther - has gone down in history as one of the greatest live-action portrayals of a superhero of all time. The legendary actor's sudden passing resulted in Marvel Studios crafting a sequel designed to pay tribute to his legacy, with Shuri at the forefront of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever to honor T'Challa's legacy.

However, according to new reports, she may not be holding onto the mantle for as long as initially expected.

T'Challa's son could take over the Black Panther mantle sooner than expected

According to a new report from Marvel scooper Rejected Scooper, Marvel Studios has plans to continue the Black Panther franchise with a third movie after Avengers: Secret Wars. That's not the first time that this has come up among the insiders, as fellow scooper HolyField News also reported that Black Panther 3 is indeed happening, but that it will feature a new character in the mantle.

The report claims that the mantle of the Black Panther will be passed down by Shuri to the son of T'Challa. While Marvel Studios has not yet confirmed this rumor, this would actually be a pretty believable storyline. Remember, the conclusion of Wakanda Forever saw Shuri discover that T'Challa and Nakia had a son together (whom Nakia was raising out of the public eye and away from Wakanda). His legal name is Toussaint but it was revealed to his aunt that his Wakandan name is T'Challa.

Letitia Wright as Shuri in Marvel Studios' Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL. /

It was a bittersweet moment as Shuri looked out at the sea and reflected on her brother's life. The film was all about carrying on his legacy, and this was an incredibly powerful moment as it was the most meaningful way that his legacy could live on.

With that in mind, it would be understandable if Prince T'Challa II eventually followed in his father's footsteps to become the next Black Panther (although it does suggest that the potential sequel would take place years in the future when he was fully grown). While Shuri stepped up to take on the mantle and honor her brother's legacy, she had her own path in the first film that was very different from the warrior she became in the second one, so it wouldn't be too surprising if she willingly passed the mantle to her nephew later in both of their lives.

Shuri would likely stick around even if she isn't Black Panther

It is worth noting that none of the rumors suggest that Shuri won't be involved in the third Black Panther movie; just that she would eventually give up the Black Panther mantle to T'Challa's son.

In fact, the aforementioned report also states that Shuri will have a major storyline in the film as she is rumored to come across one of her greatest villains from the comics. Who that is remains to be seen, but it would go a long way in highlighting her continued importance to the Black Panther franchise.

Whether or not that rumor comes true, the character will continue to be involved in the MCU, with reports that she will cameo in Captain America: Brave New World and subsequently play a major role in the upcoming Avengers 5. She will likely be a major player in the new line-up of Avengers and continue to be a hero for a long time to come. By the time Black Panther 3 does roll around (if it does indeed happen), Shuri might pass the mantle to T'Challa's son, allowing for a new Black Panther to take over and perhaps bringing the trilogy full-circle.

As this is just a rumor, it's best to take it with a grain of salt, but given how Black Panther: Wakanda Forever ended, it's a definite possibility.

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