Boseman died of cancer in 2020 at the age of 43. He had been diagnosed with colon cancer in 2016 but chose not to make the news public.
In an interview with TMZ, Derrick Boseman said that he thinks his brother’s character, King T’Challa, needs to live on in the Black Panther franchise. Even if that would mean replacing Boseman in the role.
He added that there aren’t many “positive influences for young Black children” and that Marvel has an opportunity to bring T’Challa back and give fans a superhero they can believe in.
Derrick clarified that “Chadwick never explicitly expressed his wishes, before his death, about what should happen with the character”.
However, he personally believes that Boseman would want T’Challa to live on in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Marvel fans have launched a petition on Change.org asking for Marvel to “recast King T’Challa to honour Chadwick Boseman in the Black Panther franchise”.
The petition has already been signed by over 44,000 people.
“If Marvel Studios removes T’Challa, it would be at the expense of the audiences (especially Black boys and men) who saw themselves in him,” the petition’s description states. “That also includes the millions of fans who were inspired by the character as well. The number one way to kill a legend, is to stop telling their story.”
The petition makers clarify that their efforts don’t mean they want Marvel to replace Boseman, but are merely asking to continue the portrayal of T’Challa in the MCU.
In the past week, the hashtag #RecastTChalla has also been trending on Twitter.
“Chadwick Boseman worked through cancer to give T’Challa life. Now you want to kill off T’Challa despite Chadwick Boseman’s hard work and sacrifice? #RecastTchalla out of respect for Chadwick and the character’s history!” wrote one fan.