“Black Panther” stars tout its diversity and example at L.A. premiere

Chadwick Boseman/Disney(LOS ANGELES) — Marvel’s highly anticipated Black Panther had its premiere Monday night in Los Angeles, and a few of its stars believe it’s much more than just a superhero movie.

Angela Bassett, who plays Queen Ramonda in the film, insists that even though it centers on Chadwick Boseman’s titular character, the power of women is also on display.

“Women are just front and center in Black Panther,” she says. “It’s Black Panther, but you know…”

Actress Sope Aluko, who plays Shaman in the film, was born in Nigeria, and she, for one, is particularly proud of Black Panther‘s depiction of Africa.

“For so long we’ve seen Hollywood’s version of Africa, and it’s so nice to finally to see the real version because we Africans, we’re like, ‘Wow, they finally get us!'” she tells ABC Radio.

South African director and playwright John Kani who plays Black Panther’s father in the movie says it’s important to have an African superhero.

“It was important to give the next of young people in Africa and African hero and not only think about us as dictators, he tells ABC. “At the moment they will see this movie and they will say, ‘I want to be like that king; I want to be like those heroes; I now am proud to be an African.'”

Black Panther — also starring Michael P. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Daniel Kaluuya and Forest Whitaker — opens nationwide February 16.

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