Danai Gurira to Play 'Black Panther's Okoye in Disney Plus Series

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Black Panther, Danai Gurira, Dora Milaje
Marvel Studios

The Marvel Cinematic Universe can't get enough of Danai Gurira. Not only will the actress be returning to the franchise as Okoye, general of the Dora Milaje, in Ryan Coogler's upcoming Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, but she'll also star in an origin spinoff series for Disney+.

The Hollywood Reporter first broke the news in its annual list of top entertainment attorneys. ET has reached out to Gurira's reps and Marvel Studios for confirmation and comment.

The upcoming sequel to 2018's Black Panther recently announced a release date of July 8, 2022. Coogler is directing and writing the film, which Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has confirmed will not feature a recast of the late Chadwick Boseman's King T'Challa. Lupita Nyong'o, Winston Duke, and Letitia Wright are all expected to return for the new film.

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It's still unclear how the film will recalibrate following the death of Boseman in 2020, but the cast and crew have been open about honoring the late actor's legacy however possible.

"I know that all of us are dedicated to reimagining or carrying on his legacy in this new Black Panther, and Ryan Coogler has some really, really exciting ideas that I look forward to bringing to life with the rest of the family," Nyong'o told Good Morning America in March. 

The untitled Black Panther TV series will also come from Coogler's Proximity Media banner and will take place in the kingdom of Wakanda. Although there haven't been any plot details revealed, fans have long hoped for a series that centers on Wakanda's all-female fighting force. There's no information on who could be joining Gurira on the show but her involvement gives fans hope that they'll dive deeper into the military mindset and team dynamics among the impressive combatants in their own project.

"We had some amazing women in there, I loved the women we got to get together with for the Dora Milaje," Gurira told ET in February 2019. "These women are, some of them are stuntwomen, some of them are from dance… even circus performers. It was a very interesting group of women who came together, from all over the world, and who all brought in grace and ability and all of that."

"We need to see more women stories being told," she also noted. "I think that's something that's being slowly more and more realized and proven without a shadow of a doubt."

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