The early word on Captain America: Civil War is overwhelmingly positive, and one aspect all reviewers seem to agree on is that Black Panther and Spider-Man are perfectly introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. By all accounts both characters have a solid amount of screen time, but that wasn’t always meant to be the case.
While speaking with Cinema Blend, co-screenwriter Christopher Markus revealed that Black Panther originally had a much smaller role in Civil War: “Originally, T'Challa and T'Chaka were just the representatives of Wakanda, sort of the voice of other countries in the world going, ‘You people are out of control,’ and then to be aggrieved by possible Bucky actions. Frankly, just not have him be Black Panther yet. He's getting his own movie, you know. He's the prince of a country!”
“When things maybe looked like we weren’t going to get Spider-Man, it was like, ‘Let's put the costume on that [Black Panther] guy!’”, Markus continued. “And then he became so integral to the story as it evolved that once Spider-Man came back, we didn't take him out. So, it was a problem that created a really nice situation.”
This is pretty much the definition of a happy accident; there was a time in Civil War’s development that Spider-Man wasn’t in the film and Black Panther wasn’t going to suit up. While having Chadwick Boseman in a purely political role would’ve been interesting the brief clips we’ve seen of T’Challa in costume have been incredible, and critics have already hailed Tom Holland as the best on-screen Spider-Man ever. It’s funny how things work out sometimes…
Directed by Joe Russo and Anthony Russo, and starring Chris Evans, Robert Downey, Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Chadwick Boseman, Tom Holland, Anthony Mackie, and Sebastian Stan, Captain America: Civil War opens in UK cinemas on April 29, 2016 and May 6, 2016 in the US.