It’s no secret anymore that Black Panther is one of the most groundbreaking movies in recent history. Not only has it broken into the top 10 most successful movies of all time, but it has also become the third highest grossing movie in the United States, making it the number one superhero movie in the country. Audiences love Black Panther, both for its incredible storytelling ability and the manner in which it brought light to African culture, which most movies today do not do, let alone superhero movies.
In response to the success and inspiration of Black Panther, a group of siblings, David, Ali, and Matt Barthwell, have decided to put together a comic-themed convention like no other: WakandaCon. WakandaCon is a Chicago-based event that will occur in early August 2018 in the downtown Hilton Hotel. The convention will not only celebrate the success of Black Panther, but other black superheroes and fictional figures as well.
The event’s website homepage describes WakandaCon as, “a celebration of Afro-Futurism, Tech, and Black superheroes in film, gaming, television, and comic-books.” Said WakandaCon co-founder Ali Barthwell.
“The moment we saw Wakanda in film, we wanted a space to gather and talk about everything African-Americans are passionate about. Afro-Futurism is about imagining a future for Black people all around the world. WakandaCon is a space for Black people to look past the present and into our future.”
While there are currently no confirmed panelists for this event, we can expect there to be a significant turnout. Black Panther may have been a standard superhero with a great narrative for many people, for others it was an inspiration. Both African and African-American culture are very rarely shown this in-depth on screen, so the representation shown in Black Panther was almost revolutionary for many people.
A celebration of this achievement and inspiration is sure to inspire a number of panelists and speakers to attend. While WakandaCon would be lucky to get A-list panelists like Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan, it’s a safe bet that the convention will at the very least manage to include some of the more prominent African American comic writers of Marvel and DC.
When WakandaCon was first announced, it was originally going to be a single-day event. However, after people responded well to the event’s announcement, the Barthwell siblings announced the dates, revealing it to now be a weekend-long convention. The Full Weekend Badges will cost attendees $35, but if you decide to grab your ticket before June 1st, you can get the Discounted Full Weekend Badge for only $25.
In addition to passes to the event itself, WakandaCon is also offering fans who can’t make it to Chicago that weekend a “Digital Pass.” For $10, people can experience WakandaCon through “remote access to live streaming,” in addition to access to archived material once the convention comes to an end.
Even though WakandaCon is a fan-made event, it is panning out to become a truly remarkable experience. This inspirational and affordable celebration of African American achievement is sure to bring out a large number of fans, and hopefully a fair number of panelists as well. For more information on WakandaCon, and to reserve your badge, visit the convention’s website here at WakandaCon.