According to a listing by Cineplex Canada, the new Black Panther movie has a total running time of two hours and forty-one minutes. It will be the longest movie in MCU Phase 4 and also the lengthiest film that is not an Avengers title.
The Avengers: Endgame set the record for the longest film in the MCU with a total movie length of 181 minutes. It looks like Black Panther: Wakanda Forever might be the runner-up in the category. The previous holder for the record of the longest non-Avengers film was The Eternals which ran for two hours and thirty-five minutes, which Wakanda Forever clears by a full five minutes.
The length of the movie should not be a surprise as there is a lot of plot that need to be told. For one, the movie has to tackle the death of King T’Challa and we expect that there will be a grand funeral for the fallen superhero.
The movie also needs to address the ascension of the next person who will take the mantle of Black Panther. We reported yesterday that Shuri may be taking her brother’s place as the new protector of Wakanda. There is a scene in the trailer that may hint at a ritual to crown the new Black Panther.
Marvel chose not to recast the role of Black Panther for the new movie. "It just felt like it was much too soon to recast" says MCU President Kevin Feige. According to Feige, the "world is still processing the loss of Chad" and Black Panther’s director Ryan Coogler included it in the story. There is a sense of grief and mourning in the movie trailer for Wakanda Forever.
Aside from the death of T’Challa, Black Panther 2 will also address the ramifications of the former King’s decision to open up Wakanda to the world. How this event leads to a conflict with the Talocan Kingdom and its ruler Namor should be one of the central plot elements.
The movie will also introduce Riri Williams, a super genius and inventor much like Shuri, and how she becomes Iron Heart. The trailer prominently shows William cutting a heart-shaped piece of metal similar to how Iron Man made the Mark 1 suit. In the comic books, Williams is mentored by Tony Stark on becoming a superhero.
Lastly, there is also the question of who is going to succeed T’Challa as King of Wakanda. There are rumors that T’Challa and Nakia had a son at some point after the first film ended. A scene in the trailer also depicts the birth of a baby.
With a laundry list of plot items to tackle, it is understandable that the film would take a while to finish. There is indeed a lot of catching up to do with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Marvel Studios has not yet commented on the length of the film.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever opens in theaters on November 11, 2022.