15 Facts About
Black Panther‘s Letitia Wright That You Need To Know
March 8, 2018
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
By now, pretty much everyone has seen
at least once in theaters. The movie has been heralded as one of the best superhero comic book movies yet and it has been groundbreaking in its diversity and representation. Almost immediately after seeing the action flick, we may or may not have went out and bought all of the best Black Panther we could find. Black Panther products
As much we are freaking out over
Lupita Nyong’o, Chadwick Boseman and , we can’t help but single out one of our fave characters from the movie. Shuri is the Princess of Wakanda and basically provides the whole country with advanced technology. Michael B. Jordan Letitia Wright brings Shuri to life and is honestly cooler than Shuri herself — we didn’t think that was possible. We’re giving you the need-to-know info about our favorite Wakandan Princess:
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She was born in Guyana.
Letitia is a self-proclaimed North London girl, but it's not always been that way. Before her family lived in London, they were living in Georgetown, Guyana. Letitia was actually born in Guyana, which is right next to Venezuela, and lived there for seven years.
Letitia moved to the UK in 2000 and has been there ever since. She spent most of her life living in Tottenham, which is a district of north London, England. She has such strong London ties and her accent is a mix between her home country of Guyana and where she grew up.
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Shuri is smarter than Tony Stark.
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Letitia has shot to stardom for playing Shuri, Princess of Wakanda in
Black Panther. She is the younger sister of King T'Challa and is the leader of the Wakandan Design Group who is responsible for innovating most of Wakanda's advanced technology. So basically, she is a certified bad-ass. Getting to portray such a strong and intelligent female comic book character is a huge honor and Shuri's bad-ass level just intensified because one of the Black Panther producers said that Shuri is smarter than Tony Stark (a.k.a. Iron Man).
In an interview with
ScreenRant, Nate Moore explained that Shuri's brains and ferocity are not be overlooked because she is a 16-year-old girl. We love that the producers are vouching for Shuri and that she will most likely be taken seriously by other characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
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She is one of the youngest members of the MCU.
Letitia may have portrayed a 16-year-old princess, but she is actually 24 years old. We're used to actors playing characters that are
YEARS younger than them IRL, but Letitia really does look young! Although she is older than the character she plays, she's actually one of the youngest members of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
A majority of the actors who are in Marvel movies like
The Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy are over the age of 30. Other than Tom Holland, who is 21, Letitia is one of the few major Marvel actors who are under 30. That's pretty impressive if you ask us!
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She wants Shuri to inspire all women.
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
It's no secret that
Black Panther is a history-making film that is inspiring people, especially people of color. It is a ground-breaking movie and Letitia isn't taking her role lightly. Many people are calling her their new favorite Disney Princess because Disney technically owns Marvel and she understands that millions of people are looking up to both her AND Shuri.
During an interview with
, Letitia spoke about how she wants The Hollywood Reporter Black Panther to be an inspiration not only for young black girls, but to everyone. She said, "I'm proud to be a young black girl doing this, but also as much as this is for young black women to be inspired, [it's for] all women of all ethnicities, of all races to be inspired." We love that!
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She has been on major TV shows.
Letitia has become a household name since finding her big break in
Black Panther, but she has actually been working in the industry for years. Her first acting job was in 2011, when she had a guest spot on the show Holby City. Before finding success in film, she was featured on some of the biggest series!
In 2015, Letitia guest-starred on
Doctor Who as Anahson during the ninth season. Most recently, she starred on Netflix's Black Mirror as Nish on the "Black Museum" episode. It is one of the most memorable episodes of the season and really showed off her acting talent.
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Ready Player One.
Warner Bros. Pictures
We still have to wait over a month until
Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters, but thankfully Letitia has another movie coming out to help speed up the waiting process. Letitia is in the upcoming highly-anticipated, sci-fi flick Ready Player One that is based on the Ernest Cline book of the same name.
Steven Spielberg is directing the film, so we know it's going to be good. Letitia is playing Reb, someone who is also trying to control OASIS. The film premieres on March 29, and we are so excited to see Letitia in a new role!
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She can freestyle.
This princess knows how to drop a beat! One of our favorite things about
Black Panther finally being out in theaters, other than being able to see it, of course, is that our timelines have become flooded with behind-the-scenes pics and videos from when the cast was on set. One thing that we have been seeing a lot of is video footage of Letitia freestyle rapping in between takes, and if we wouldn't have seen it we probably wouldn't have believed it.
We are super impressed with this video and can't help but smile while watching it. We know that Letitia is full of surprises, but we weren't expecting her to be able to put 'freestyle rapper' on her résumé.
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Her faith is important to her.
Before Letitia was able to book gigs regularly, she had a tough time figuring out her priorities. In an interview with
, Letitia revealed that she actually had to take a break from acting and said, "I was in the dark going through so many bad things, when the world didn't know about Shuri and Letitia and whatever is happening now." Vanity Fair
During her break from acting, Letitia attended a London actors Bible study and found Christianity. In an interview with
W magazine, she said that when she attended the Bible study she thought, "Okay, Jesus, I'll try you,' and I haven't looked back since. I don't really consider myself religious. I view it more as a relationship. And if anyone thinks that's weird, then okay."
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Akeelah and the Bee inspired her to act.
Who knew that a small 2006 movie about a spelling bee would have a such a lasting impact and be one of the reasons that we know Letitia's name? In an interview with
in 2015, Letitia spoke about the importance of seeing black actors take on positive roles in movies and on TV. The Guardian
During the interview, Letitia said that when she saw
Akeelah and the Bee, she was instantly hooked. She said, "It's not a famous film, but it just shifted something for me — someone that looks like me, doing something positive." Seeing Keke Palmer's Akeelah helped Letitia realize that she wanted to become an actor. Wow.
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She has shared a stage role with Lupita Nyong'o.
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty
Wakanda forever! Before joining forces in How insane is it that years before
Black Panther, Letitia and Lupita Nyong'o actually shared a stage role together! Letitia starred in the play Eclipsed on the West End in 2015. The following year, Eclipsed moved to Broadway and Lupita took over the role from Letitia! Black Panther was in the works, the two shared a role? And that's not even the craziest part! Eclipsed is written by none other than Danai Gurira, who is also in Black Panther!
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Black Panther cast is best friends.
It's obvious that the actors who work in the Marvel Cinematic Universe are friends both on and off screen. They love to goof around on set and love to hang out together when they're not filming. The cast members from
Black Panther are no different and we are LOVING their friendship.
When you're forced to go on long press trips and talk about your movie over and over again, we're sure it can get a little boring and frustrating, but the core
Black Panther cast has had nothing but fun while promoting the film. It's so nice to see a group of actors that truly love each other and their work and it makes watching the movie so much better!
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She has a crush on Kendrick Lamar.
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
We love finding out which celebs other celebs are crushing on; it makes them feel more like normal people and gives us a way to connect with them, which is why we can't get enough of Letitia's crush on
Kendrick Lamar. Kendrick is an 11-time Grammy nominee and is also the brains behind Black Panther: The Album.
If you've seen
Black Panther, then you already know how incredible the music is, and knowing that Kendrick is the one who curated it makes it even better. After the L.A. premiere of Black Panther, Letitia tweeted out her disappointment that, while she was doing an interview, Kendrick walked right past her! Apparently, they have never met; we're hoping that they will soon!
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She went to the same school as John Boyega.
When Letitia realized she wanted to pursue acting, she attended London's Identity School of Acting. The school boasts itself as United Kingdom's leading part-time drama school and it has some impressive alumni like Letitia and
Star Wars' John Boyega.
We love this school because not only did it produce two of the biggest current actors, but it was built in order to provide more diversity to films. The founder of the school told
BBC, "Rather than join a chorus of complaint [about the industry's lack of diversity], I decided to do something about it."
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She is excited to see
A Wrinkle in Time.
Walt Disney StudiosMotion Pictures
isn't excited about Disney's new A Wrinkle in Time movie? A Wrinkle in Time is also making waves due to its diversity and the director being a black female. Shout out to Ava DuVernay! Although these two films both are inspiring, for some reason, people are pitting them against each other.
Letitia doesn't feel the need to fight it out against another powerful, black-led film and is instead celebrating it and rooting for it to succeed! When the first trailer was released, Letitia was quick to share it with her followers and even
tweeted out, saying, "yes to everything about @WrinkleInTime !!!! posters, teasers, everythinggggg. Can't wait to see it!"
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She is taking a break for the rest of the year.
In 2018 alone, Letitia has three major movies coming out with
Black Panther, Ready Player One and Avengers: Infinity War. That's a whole lot of interviews, promotions, red carpets and premieres. Although that sounds like a dream come true to us, to most actors, it's just another day at work. With so much going on in her life, Letitia is planning to have a very relaxed rest of the year after Avengers: Infinity War debuts.
After the initial wave of
Black Panther joy passed, Letitia made it a point to tweet out, saying, that she was going to "hide away with Jesus!" and restore her soul "with Gods love and presence." She has said with every new season she wants to be able to look back and give thanks to God.