T.I. & Family (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
By Mwabi Kaira

Tip Harris aka rapper T.I. teamed up with Walmart to give away free tickets to an advance screening of Black Panther in Atlanta last night, and it was fiyah! Walmart chose to partner with T.I. because of his unwavering commitment to his community and because the movie was shot in Atlanta. Lucky ticket holders came to Regal Hollywood in Chamblee and filled 2 theaters while enjoying the movie in 3D. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms brought her family and joined Atlanta celebrities including T.I. and his family, television host and author Egypt, Sheree Whitfield of Real Housewives of Atlanta, Tye White of Greenleaf, and Ms. Juicy of Little Women, just to name a few...

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Gowns on fleek! (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
The atmosphere was electric; when 2 ladies entered the theater in their African material ball gowns, there was a collective gasp from everyone. Some even took to their social media live feeds whilst in the lobby to share their excitement and atmosphere with their friends.

Mayor Keisha Bottoms (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
Mayor Bottoms expressed her gratitude by saying,
“I thank Marvel for believing in Atlanta, this movie was shot all over Atlanta not just the popular places like Midtown but even in Vine City.” Black Panther generated more than $83.9 million to the local economy and contributed more than $26.5 million in wages to more than 3,100 workers across the state. I’m so excited about the power of an African-American cast that will engage audiences, this is a great lesson for girls to see that we can do it all from being a Mayor to being so powerful on the big screen.”
T.I. (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
T.I. is known as a walking Thesaurus on social media with his use of big words. Seeing him speak in person, I must add that he is an amazing orator that commands his audience. He gave red carpet interviews expressing the importance of seeing superheros on the big screen that look like us and how imperative it was that our children know that there’s greatness inside them that just needs to be activated but it was his short speech before the movie started that got us all going. Most notably T.I. said, “I thank Walmart for giving people in our community a way to see this movie. There’s a superhero inside all of us and the superhero is you.”

Black Panther is an absolute gem. No stone was left unturned. Director Ryan Coogler and the entire cast - Chadwick Boseman, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Michael B. Jordan, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong’o, Daniel Kauuya, and Letitia Wright will leave you wanting more. I left the theater feeling  many emotions, the most prominent was pride. Black Panther will be in theaters on February 16th.

More red carpet photos!

Sheree Whitfield (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
Egypt (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
Headkrack

Tye White (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
Ms. Juicy (photo: MichaelWalker/UmeekImages)
Do you have your Black Panther tickets yet?!?!
Mwabi Kaira is an African girl navigating her way in an American world. She is of Zambian and Malawian heritage and moved to the USA in 1993. Writing has been her passion since she could put a sentence together on the page. Mothering her sons is her pride and joy. She has been an avid runner since 2013 and has run 10 half marathons and a full marathon. Keep up with her at http://africanbeautifulme.blogspot.com/
Black Panther Cast
By Kanisha Parks

Black Panthercomes out next weekend and it’s already broken Fandango’s advance ticket sales record, becoming their #1 selling superhero of all time. Needless to say, we’ve been waiting for this movie long before its official trailer dropped back in October 2017 but now the anticipation is through the roof. My entire family and I have our tickets and outfits ready. #IssaCelebration. According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Reviews are in for Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, and they are easily the best for a Marvel Studios project to date, with almost everyone left in awe not only of the movie’s ambition, but its success in achieving that ambition on the big screen. As of Tuesday morning, the film has a 100 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes.”

The fact that this movie is called Black Panther is reason enough to raise intrigue, but there are several other reasons it's a huge deal for the world, but specifically, the black community.


Chaswick Boseman & Michael B. Jordan
1. For Us, By Us. Directed by Ryan Coogler, (who also directed Creed and Fruitvale Station), Black Panther stars Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa/Black Panther alongside fellow heavy-hitters Lupita Nyong'o, Michael B. Jordan, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, and Forest Whitaker. “Black Panther marks the first time that a major studio has greenlit a black superhero movie with an African-American director and a primarily black cast” (Variety).
Our representation in this film is present throughout: from the title to the director and actors. Even though it technically wasn’t made just for black people, we’re definitely laying claims and will likely constitute the greatest support for the film’s sales.
On whether or not a white director could’ve done Black Panther, Chadwick Boseman told Variety, “Well, is it possible for them to make it? It could be, yes. Would they have his perspective? Probably not. It wouldn’t be nuanced in the same way because they wouldn’t have the same conflict. They don’t have the African-American conflict that exists: Whether you’re conscious of it or not, you have an ancestry that is very hard to trace.”

Chadwick Boseman
2. It’s Been a Long Time Comin.’ We’ve had black roles in other superhero movies: Will Smith in “Suicide Squad,” and Halle Berry as “Catwoman,” and do we even have to talk about Michael B. Jordan in Fantastic Four? Other attempts at black superheroes as leads include Meteor Man, Blankman, Steel, Spawn, and most notably, Blade. In fact, Wesley Snipes even wanted to play Black Panther back in the early ‘90s but the vision was remarkably different—focused on cultural diversity instead of centered around black power—and never came to fruition. The time is now.
“We've been waiting to see ourselves onscreen, flying through the air and running across buildings and dodging laserblasts from bearded colonialists our entire lives. The future is Ryan Coogler, Chadwick Boseman, T'Challa, Black Panther. The future is here on February 16th” (Tre Johnson, Rolling Stone).
When asked why this is a good moment in history for this movie to be made, Chadwick Boseman responded, “Everybody is excited about the opportunity to do something that we should have already done. People are excited about seeing new stuff, but I think they're extra excited about seeing stuff they should have seen already” (CNET).

Dunai Gurira, Lupita Nyong'o & Florence Kasumba
3. Strong. Black. Women. Yes, Black Panther is the lead character, but he doesn’t shine alone: he is surrounded by strong black women, which is truly a positive for black women and girls alike.
Lupita Nyong’o, who plays Nakia, an undercover spy for the fictitious African nation Wakanda in the film, says, “The man’s power does not diminish because the woman is assuming hers (power). So, just because I have power it does not mean that I threaten the man’s position.” Always an advocate for women and girls asserting themselves, Nyong’o adds: “Little girls watching it will perhaps, they won’t be so afraid of their power. We have four women in this film that are powerful in very different ways and that is really exciting to have that be the thing that our young ones are watching” (Hindustan Times).
With the current culture of how women are being treated in America, it’s important for women, especially black women, to be appropriately represented in the media. I’m glad that we have the opportunity to see ourselves represented on-screen as we truly are: beautiful, bold, brave, powerful women.

And I’m even gladder that we finally have our iconic superhero movie, created from start to finish with us in mind. It’s about time.
Why are you excited to see Black Panther?
Kanisha is a Christian writer/author based in Augusta, GA. Other than CurlyNikki.com, she has also written for BlackNaps.organd Devozine, and has authored a book of poetry entitled, "Love Letters from the Master." Kanisha can be contacted for business inquiries at [email protected] 
Lupita Nyong'o at the premiere of Black Panther in Hollywood
Hey Ya'll,

We could all use a little fashion fix once in a while and who better to bring it to us than our girl Taneica, from Tea With Taneica! This media personality, news producer, mommy, wife, friend, tea sipper, and shade thrower who loves Jesus (you know we lifted that from her IG page, go follow it now!) will have you cackling at your desk as she recaps the week's most eye-catching red carpet looks! Up this week is the hot-like-fiyah Black Panther premiere and more! Please like, subscribe and follow Taneica's page, and be on the look out for more of The Fashioning, right here on CN!