BLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVER Could Face Production Issue Due To Star's Reported Unvaccinated Status
The United States recently established a rule that requires non-U.S. citizens to be vaccinated to enter the country by plane. The new rule could pose a challenge for Wakanda Forever's production.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever recently faced a setback when Letitia Wright (Shuri) had to leave the production after suffering an injury on set. Filming continued in her absence, but it ultimately stopped as the crew had shot everything they could without the actress. Now, it appears the movie could face another issue in the future due to Wright's reported unvaccinated status.
The C.D.C. (the Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recently instated a rule for all non-U.S. air travelers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to enter the United States. When she got injured, Letitia Wright — who's not an American citizen — returned to London to recover. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actress is unvaccinated, which could prevent her from returning to the U.S.
Wakanda Forever is filming in Atlanta, and Wright being unable to fly back to the United States could theoretically present a challenge for the sequel. Given that production is currently on hiatus, it's unclear how likely this outcome may be, or whether or not it could lead to a longer production delay (and eventually a release-date move).
When it was first reported that Wakanda Forever would stop filming, it was stated that production was expected to pick back up in early 2022, which means that, in theory, Wright could have enough time to get vaccinated. However, the actress has been reported to be against the COVID-19 vaccine. Wright seemingly shared her views in a controversial tweet in late 2020. Then, in October of this year, THR stated she had been sharing anti-vax rhetoric on the set of Wakanda Forever. At the time, Wright denied the report, stating:
"I honestly assert that [the report] was completely untrue. Anyone who knows me or has worked with me, knows that I work incredibly hard at my craft & my main focus is always to do work that’s impactful and inspiring. That has been & will continue to be my only focus."
For now, we have to wait for more information to know whether or not Wright's reported unvaccinated status will affect Wakanda Forever's production. The Black Panther sequel is scheduled to arrive in theaters on November 11, 2022.