Will Smith is the latest Hollywood power player to celebrate Black Panther and laud director Ryan Coogler for a well thought out film. Chadwick Boseman leads the cast of mainly Black actors as T’Challa, Wakanda’s newly crowned king and protector. As he settles into his new responsibilities, the young leader’s legacy is almost immediately challenged by both internal and external detractors.
Critically, on top of having a Certified Fresh Rotten Tomatoes score, it’s also become the site’s Best Movie of All Time, edging out Wizard of Oz. The general viewing audience digs the film as well, with an A+ CinemaScore, making it only the second superhero flick to nab the review aggregator’s top grade. If that’s still not enough, we’re pretty sure the box office speaks for itself. Black Panther has already amassed a four-day holiday weekend total of $242 million, taking the spot as the fifth largest four-day opening of all time
Smith took some time off while filming his next project, Gemini Man, and watched the latest Marvel flick. In his latest Instagram post, he did a roll call of the cast (plus Coogler) of Black Panther and giddily congratulated them with the massive success of the movie. “What you have done is spectacular. I watched the film a couple of days ago and damn near got brought to tears. You guys have challenged and potentially even shattered a lot of long-time, long-held, false Hollywood beliefs and paradigms. I just wanna say congratulations to you. I’m proud, I’m excited, damn near giddy. Congrats, y’all,” he said, ending it with the Wakandan salute. The veteran actor also passed on the advice that the late great Nelson Mandela told him regarding how to use his platform as an artist to impact people’s lives in the clip’s caption. Check out his upload below:
I want to share something that Nelson Mandela said to me. . He said, “With the type of fame that you have attained it is important when you encounter your fans that you — Reach Your Hand Out and let them Feel Your Flesh. You have to prove to them that you are REAL — because people can not aspire to anything they do not believe is Real.” . So I say to you, Congratulations! Enjoy this Transcendent Moment. Go into the streets… Touch them… Let them know that you are real! . @chadwickboseman, @michaelbjordan @lupitanyongo @letitiawright @danaigurira @danielkaluuya @im.angelabassett @andyserkis @winstoncduke @sterlingkbrown @rmorrison @therealstanlee @ludwiggoransson @iamruthecarter #blackpanther . With Pure Delight WILL 🙂
Smith and his wife, Jada Pinkett, have always been vocal about social and political issues. They openly supported President Barrack Obama and are involved in various charity causes. In 2016, they boycotted the Academy Awards after the Oscars So White controversy so it’s not really a surprise that the actor will back a film like Black Panther, which champions Black talents, both in front and behind the camera, in Hollywood.
Of course, it’s not lost on us that Smith is officially part of the DC Films Universe, playing Deadshot in Suicide Squad and expected to return for its sequel. But at this point, the social and cultural impact of Black Panther and what it means for the entertainment industry moving forward is far bigger than the supposed rivalry between Marvel and DC. Justice League star Ray Fisher already urged everyone to see the film and Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins has sent her love to the people involved. Similar to how Marvel folks rallied behind Wonder Woman because of its female empowerment message, DC people acknowledge how the Coogler-directed project can change Hollywood for the better.