Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is shaping up to be a unique triumph for Disney and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Yet there still remain some lingering doubts surrounding the movie’s messy production, during which Letitia Wright suffered an injury that delayed filming. While she recuperated, The Hollywood Reporter published a story suggesting that her COVID-19 vaccination status might cause further delays. Wright called the report “completely untrue,” though she had previously posted vaccine-skeptical content on her social media. Long story short: the issue has haunted the actor for years now.
Even on the eve of the film’s projected victory lap, questions about her vaccination status remain. In a feature story about the film, Variety tried to ask Wright about the reports regarding her vaccination status, but “her publicist interrupted the call to insist the interview move on to the next question.” Later, the outlet was told she would “respond to emailed questions” on the subject, but “two days after the questions were sent, however, the rep said ‘schedule changes’ prevented Wright from responding, and directed Variety to her Instagram statement from 2021.”
Co-star Angela Bassett and producer Nate Moore both claimed never to have heard Wright evangelizing about vaccines on the set of the film. Moore’s comments, however, seem to reveal that the production never required vaccinations at all. “It’s not a question we asked of anybody, to be quite honest,” he told Variety. “She never talked about her views either way. We read the stories that I would argue were unfair, because I don’t know where they’re coming from. As someone who literally is on set next to the monitor all the time, I feel like I would have heard it.”
While it was speculated that a lack of vaccination might prevent Wright from returning to the U.S. after she recovered from her on-set injury, her status didn’t prevent any further delays, according to Moore. “She only ever was the utmost professional and a joy to have around. She didn’t cost us a moment,” he said. “I mean, her injury was the thing that cost us, and that was no fault of her own.”