A special red-carpet event for the new Marvel Studios film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was held at the Century Cinemax in Sarit Centre, Nairobi, on Wednesday.
The premiere, organized by Mobile phone maker Infinix, attracted a large group of talent, filmmakers and the press for the red carpet rollout. The sequel to the $1.348 billion grossing original film is set to play across multiple screens in the country starting Friday.
In attendance were ‘Black Panther’ star Lupita Nyong’o’s parents, Prof Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o, who is the governor of Kisumu County, his wife Dorothy Nyong’o and other family members.
Lupita’s parents were the star attraction of the night, and they mingled and took pictures with fans before the screening started.
At one point, the governor showcased his dance moves as the crowd cheered him on.
The film follows the death in 2020 of American actor Chadwick Boseman, who played King T’Challa in the original movie released in 2018.
With the introduction of anti-hero Namor (Tenoch Huerta), the king of the underwater kingdom Talokan, who breaches Wakanda’s defences while the country is still grieving for T’Challa, ‘Wakanda Forever’ presents another powerful mythical nation with roots in the Mayan culture.
It expands on that, weaving in a Latin American perspective with a similar degree of cultural specificity in the introduction of the Aztec-inspired antagonist Namor, king of the ancient underwater world of Talokan.
Boseman’s death is poignantly filtered into the story from the start, beginning with off-screen death throes.
‘Wakanda Forever’, grappling in the aftermath of loss, ultimately seeks something rare in the battle-ready superhero landscape.
Lupita, who plays Wakandan spy Nakia, said in an interview during the film premiere in Nigeria last week that she hopes global audiences will connect with the diversity showcased in the movie.
“There is power in a diverse human experience,” she said. “I think it’s always good to be able to relate to people who do not look like you and to see your humanity in them. Our diversity is our strength as human beings.”
Mr Mike Zhang, the Infinix Kenya brand manager, said: “Black Panther is an inspiration to everyone in Africa to merge culture and technology, that is why we are proud to be a part of this amazing experience.”