Having apparently learned nothing from the overwhelmingly negative reaction to their recent licensing of Marvel icon Stan Lee’s likeness for future CGI revivals, Disney has come under fire from both fans and general audiences alike for using the late Chadwick Boseman’s Twitter account to promote the first teaser for their upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Released on July 23rd as part of the studio’s San Diego Comic-Con 2022 festivities, the sequel’s premiere preview provided audiences with their first proper look at M’Baku (Winston Duke), Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Shuri (Letita Wright), Okoye (Danai Gurira), Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o), Everett Ross (Martin Freeman), as well as newcomers Riri Willliams (Dominique Thorne) and Namor (Tenoch Huerta), as they deal with the personal and global fallout of T’Challa’s as-of yet-unexplained-in-canon passing.
However, while the release such a trailer would normally have sparked excitement amongst both general moviegoing audiences and die-hard Marvel stans, Disney proceeded to deflate their own hype by sharing the teaser through Boseman’s official Twitter account, tweeting it out alongside the caption, “WAKANDA FOREVER”.
Unsurprisingly, this use of a deceased man’s image by both the company and Boseman’s family – the latter of whom have reportedly taken over running the actor’s account following his passing – to market a major corporate product sparked a wave of outrage amongst audiences, many of whom took to social media to express their personal disbelief at these decisions.
“Maybe I’m crazy,” proposed @JerDavidson, “but what if in death it’s not the coolest to still make him promote the marvel machine.”
“First Stan Lee, now Boseman,” wrote @AnsgarTOdinson, referring to the aforementioned deal regarding the Marvel architect’s likeness. “Its sick and ghoulish to use someone’s digital corpse as a billboard for advertisements. Knock this s–t off @Disney”
@NeedNoApplause likewise asserted, “Using a dead actor’s account to promote a movie as if it’s some homage is so gross.”
@ManiacXVII outright questioned whether it was “okay to be using his account like this?”
“Like, even if you got permission, why would this ever be a question you’d ask his family?” they added. “Hollywood is cold, man. His face was in the trailer for 2 seconds.
“why are they using chadwick boseman’s account to advertise the movie?” asked @DynamoSuperX. “I dunno how I feel about that. It’s odd and weird and feels kinda exploitative. And this isn’t the first time they did this either, they did it with Stan Lee months ago.”
@SEPHIROTHTITS bluntly declared that “Logging into a man who passed fairly recently’s account to promote a movie is depraved”.
“Love to be a multibillion dollar company and use a dead man’s twitter account for free advertising,” sarcastically mocked @jenny2x4.
“The second a famous person passes Twitter should archive the account,” suggested @makedecisi0ns. “Using a dead man’s profile to promote your movie is just so f–king weird lad”.
Echoing this sentiment, @jerryasleep declared, “There should be a law that prohibits people from posting on deceased figure’s account”.
@LegoKingo opined, “always feel like they should change a dead celebrity’s social media to read “The [Name] Estate” or something because it genuinely feels unsettling to have them do these posts otherwise”.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently set to hit theaters on November 11th, 2022.