Empire (Australasia)

MEET THE BRAINS

Introducin­g the breakout star of Black Panther, Letitia Wright

- TERRI WHITE

Tell us about your character, Shuri.

She’s the princess of Wakanda and a pretty big deal! She is the person who creates all of the technology. She’s a scientist, but also a doctor — she can heal people! She’s everything I wish I was, and pretty much protects the throne, her nation and her brother, the King. Even at 18, she has to do her bit. She has such a lovely spirit. I loved playing her. It was fulfilling for me. It was refreshing.

You have appeared in Holby City and Top Boy. How does it feel to do a film of this scale?

All the TV, all the films… it’s all just trained me for this moment — it wasn’t a big shock for me. I was just so at home. Which is also because of the actors I was around and especially Ryan [Coogler] — he involved me in everything, asked my opinion and cared a lot about what I thought. I don’t have accolades like Angela Bassett and Forest Whitaker yet, but he still involved me and it helped me not to feel overwhelme­d.

This film is hugely significan­t. How does it feel to be part of this moment?

I’m super honoured, super proud. Pretty much all my life, I’ve always wanted to be part of projects that are gonna bring about change — it can be an indie film, as long as it affects people or makes people think in a different way or makes them reflect as a result. To be on this — it’s actually like a moment. It’s like Obama going in for President. You know what I mean — a moment in time where you’re going to remember it. A pinnacle moment. It’s never been done before. I’m just so honoured. I hope people really, really like it.

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