Anthony Mackie Wrote Letters Asking To Play Black Panther & Was Shocked When He Was Cast As The Falcon Instead: ‘I’m Like, Really?’
Big opportunities don’t always come how we expect.
Actor Anthony Mackie certainly seems to be a testament to this, as he recently shared he once thought he’d be joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the “Black Panther.”
During a recent interview, the TV and film star opened up about petitioning Marvel to make a movie based on the iconic African superhero back in the day before it came to fruition. As you may know, the production company would go on to release “Black Panther” starring the late Chadwick Boseman in 2018. Mackie shared that when he originally pitched the idea, however, he also pitched himself to be the leading man. He reportedly stated in the interview:
“I had been contacting Marvel a lot about Black Panther…I had written them letters. I was trying to find a way to make them make Black Panther. And I wanted to be Black Panther because growing up I f***ing loved Black Panther.”
Subsequently, Mackie said he had a meeting with two MCU directors who were courting him for a new project. While the men couldn’t disclose the story or character he’d be playing at the time, the entertainer noted that he kind of just assumed it was for the “Black Panther” role from all the reaching out he had done. He continued in the interview:
“I’ll never forget, Joe Russo said, ‘Listen, so we’re doing this movie. We want you to be in it. We can’t say what character you’re playing or who else is going to be in it. Would you do it?’ And that was it….I was like, ‘You know what, I like y’all dudes. I’ll do it. I’ll go on this ride with you.’”
Of course, Mackie would go on to shockingly discover the part he was auditioning for was not T’Challa, but instead the comic book character Sam Wilson. The fictional hero is a former soldier turned Avenger in the MCU who goes by the codename Falcon and first appears in the “Captain Marvel” series. Mackie recalled getting the offer to portray Sam, stating he was thinking:
“What other major comic book figure has enough of a presence to have his own movie?:
“So when they hit me up and they were like, ‘Yo, so it’s Sam Wilson,’ I’m like, ‘Really?’”
Despite the initial confusion, Mackie was ultimately grateful for his part in the MCU. Since signing on, the entertainer has starred as the Falcon in several recurring roles, including billion-dollar box office hits “Avengers: Infinity War” (2018) and “Avengers: Endgame” (2019). Additionally, Mackie’s character also landed its own spinoff TV series “The Falcon and the Winter Solider,” which set up his character as the new Captain America. Reportedly, Mackie’s Captain American will also get his own movie soon titled “Captain America: Brave New World,” which is currently filming in Atlanta and is reportedly set to release in 2024.
Speaking about taking on the huge role, Mackie stated:
“There’s a huge amount of pressure…You throw my dumb a** in the water, and you’re like, ‘Swim.’ I’m like, ‘Sh*t.’ But at the same time, it’s all in the state of mind. I’ve been given a great cast. I’ve been given a great group of people who I’ve worked with before.”
Could you picture Anthony Mackie as Black Panther? Let us know in the comments section below!