Letitia Wright’s Vaccination Status May Be Causing Delays For “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”
Well, it’s becoming crystal clear that Letitia Wright won’t be replacing Ice Cube in Oh Hell No or subbing for Aaron Rogers as QB of the Green Bay Packers. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Letitia might have delayed production of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, again, by refusing to get vaccinated against COVID-19. THR says Letitia is still at home in London after returning there to recover from a reported on-set injury in August and hasn’t come back. Possibly because “on Nov. 8, the CDC implemented rules that require all non-immigrant, non-citizen air travelers to the U.S. be fully vaccinated and provide proof of vaccination status before boarding a plane.” Which really just proves she’s wrong for the role of Shuri, T’Challa’s super-smart scientist sister. Shuri would have found a way to get here without having to fly commercial!
According to THR, movie studios are getting more strict about vaccine requirements as “the Biden administration is moving forward with its own mandates that are pushing Hollywood to toe the line.” Cast and crew who are considered “Zone A” and are working together in close proximity, are increasingly being required to show proof of vaccination. And Letitia apparently doesn’t have an extra arm growing out of the side of her face to prove she’s had it.
Logistical challenges await for studios that are working with stars who haven’t gotten the shot. Disney’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever star Letitia Wright — who portrays the lead Shuri, the sister of Black Panther T’Challa (the late Chadwick Boseman) — is not vaccinated, sources say. After sustaining an on-set injury in August, the Guyanese-born British actress went home to London.
Now, a return to the U.S. for a possible shoot in Atlanta, where Wakanda Forever is based, could be an issue. On Nov. 8, the CDC implemented rules that require all non-immigrant, non-citizen air travelers to the U.S. be fully vaccinated and provide proof of vaccination status before boarding a plane. Wright is not a U.S. citizen. Disney declined to comment.
Wright’s U.K. rep pointed to a statement issued Nov. 5 to THR regarding the actress’ injury, prompting a shutdown of production that will begin the week of Thanksgiving (director Ryan Coogler is said to have filmed everything he can without her). The rep notes: “Letitia has been recovering in London since September from injuries sustained on the set of Black Panther 2 and is looking forward to returning to work early 2022. Letitia kindly asks that you keep her in your prayers.”
Last December, before most people even had access to COVID-19 vaccines, Letitia let us know she had “concerns with what the vaccine contains and what we are putting in our bodies.” One of those concerns was apparently that it might cause someone to grow extra limbs based on a video she retweeted from the “well recognised Prophet” Tomi Arayomi of the poorly named Light London Church. I’m sorry but to me, “light church” should be more about covered dishes and fun hats and less about Satan trying to enter your body any which way he can. And after Don Cheadle told her she was posting “hot garbage,” Letitia eventually deleted her entire Twitter account and, according to THR, parted ways with her entire U.S. based team. There were rumors that I May Destroy You‘s Michaela Coel was replacing her as Shuri, but those proved untrue. Michaela is playing an entirely different role.
The last we’ve heard directly from Letitia was last month when she popped back up on Instagram to address a previous Hollywood Reporter story that accused her of spreading her anti-vaxx views on-set while filming in Atlanta. Letitia denied those rumors writing “I honestly assert that this 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,” before adding a bunch of stuff about God. Unfortunately for Letitia, in Hollywood God is spelled $$$ and Shuri could be played by any old box of rocks, they just need to slap a wig on it. It doesn’t have to be Letitia specifically.