Chadwick Boseman Talks ‘Black Panther’ Impact And ’21 Bridges’ Challenge

Chadwick Boseman stars in 21 Bridges. )CR: Matt Kennedy)
Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther) produced and stars in 21 Bridges, the story of a police officer (Boseman) who has Manhattan closed off as he and his colleagues attempt to find a couple of cop killers (Taylor Kitsch, Stephan James). During a recent interview, Boseman talked about the physically taxing work schedule of 21 Bridges and the lasting impact of Black Panther.

J.K. Simmons, Chadwick Boseman and Sienna Miller star in 21 BRIDGES
Image Courtesy of STXfilms. (CR: Matt Kennedy)

Part of 21 Bridges’ allure lies in the fact that it’s not a straight ahead cop flick. As NYPD detective Andre Davis (Chadwick Boseman) and his new partner, narcotics officer Frankie Burns (Sienna Miller), attempt to find the criminals (Taylor Kitsch, Stephan James), Davis also uncovers what may be corruption from within the force.

Adding to that dynamic is the shutdown of the bridges in Manhattan, and although much of the film was shot in Philadelphia, director Brian Kirk’s dedication to infusing an authentic feel to the proceedings led to a physically demanding shoot.

Chadwick Boseman and Sienna Miller – “21 Bridges” photo call. Photo CR: Eric Charbonneau

Click on the sound bar to hear Boseman elaborate on the physically demanding shoot of 21 Bridges:

Boseman, who executive produced Message from the King and Marshall, is also a producer on 21 Bridges. The monumental box office power of Black Panther has obviously giving him a bigger entree in the filmmaking world, but that movie’s success, to him, goes way beyond the money.

“It’s not even the success, it’s the impact of Black Panther is more important than the amount of money it made,” said Boseman. “It was part of an awards campaign, which is not a normal thing for a superhero movie. That is a (high point) – I can’t deny that. I felt it sitting at the Oscars. Not just because it was a superhero movie – it was black people in a superhero movie and we made it a point to make sure that we would make it as black as it could be. We wanted to make sure it wasn’t a parody of the continent and that we pulled from real culture and that it wasn’t about us borrowing from culture but we were saying in a sense that Wakanda was the origin of those cultures which allows us to use this. That’s a very strong statement to make and for that to be recognized, felt important.”

21 Bridges, co-starring J.K. Simmons, hits theaters November 22.