British actress Michaela Coel will play an out superhero in the Black Panther sequel, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
The creator and star of the hit HBO drama I May Destroy You has been cast as Aneka, a member of the Dora Milaje who, in the comics, has a relationship with fellow Dora Milaje warrior Ayo.
Aneka will be the latest out superhero to appear in a Marvel film. The studio debuted its first out character in the 2021 film The Eternals, followed by the introduction of lesbian superhero America Chavez in the Doctor Strange sequel this spring.
The franchise’s most recent offering, Thor: Love and Thunder, found Valkyrie, played by out actress Tessa Thompson, searching for her queen. However, the film has been criticized for overhyping its queer representation while giving little screen time to actual queer storylines.
So far, there is no word on whether or not Aneka’s queerness will play a part in the Black Panther sequel, or if the film will explore her romance with Ayo, who has appeared in other Marvel installments. She is played by Florence Kasumba, who is slated to reprise the role in the upcoming film.
Marvel debuted the trailer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever at San Diego Comic Con over the weekend. According to the official description, the film will feature numerous characters from the original, including Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Shuri (Letitia Wright), M’Baku (Winston Duke), War Dog Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o), Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) and members of the Dora Milaje who must “fight to protect their nation from the intervening world powers in the wake of King T’Challa’s death [played in the original film by the late Chadwick Boseman].” The film is scheduled for release this November.
Here’s to hoping that we’ll see more of Aneka and Ayo together soon! In the meantime, you can catch the trailer here.