“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” features some stunning underwater sequences, which presented something of an obstacle for the film’s director, Ryan Coogler, given that he’d never learned how to swim.
“A lot of us were raised to have fear of water,” Coogler explained in an interview with Variety. “I had to figure out how to swim so I could direct this movie.”
As Variety points out, about half of the movie takes place in the Talokan, which required actors to spend a significant amount of the production in the water.
“If the camera’s in the water, actors are in the water, I’ve got to be in there too,” said Coogler.
Stars Angela Bassett and Letitia Wright likewise needed some swimming lessons to prepare for the movie.
“I’m excited for people to see what these two did in the water,” the director said of the two, who trained with world-class free diving instructors.
“I was just impressed by how much stunt work they all did, how everybody showed up ready to go, ready to learn how to free dive,” Coogler added.
Meanwhile, Lupita Nyong’o admitted that while she was able to swim prior to the movie, her abilities increased significantly after the training she underwent for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”.
“Before we started this film, I knew how to swim, but I wasn’t a confident swimmer,” Nyong’o said. “I didn’t need to swim in public, that’s for sure. That’s a lifelong skill that I now have.”
“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” hits theatres on Friday, Nov. 11.