Black Panther broke even more records with last night’s Oscar wins

Wakanda strikes again

The 2019 Oscars took it’s first baby steps towards becoming a little less whitewashed. Last night Black Panther was among the films that made history, breaking yet more records since the film’s much-hyped release.

Ruth Carter became the first black person to win the best costume design. In her acceptance speech, Carter said that the award had “been a long time coming.” She added: “Marvel may have created the first black superhero but through costume design, we turned him into an African king.”

Later in the evening, Hannah Beachler also took home the prize for best production design alongside Jay Hart, making her the first black winner in that category. Both represent only the third and second black women ever to win non-acting Oscars.

A Fast Company profile of the production designer notes that she previously said she didn’t know her calling until “she was sweeping the floors of a low budget Lifetime movie”, after that she went on the collaborate with Black Panther’s director (Ryan Coogler) in 2013 on Fruitvale Station. She thanked him in her triumphant speech announcing to the room: “Thank you, Ryan. I love you.”

“I stand here stronger than I was yesterday,” she said. “I stand here with agency and self-worth because of Ryan Coogler, who not only made me a better designer, a better storyteller, a better person.”

She continued: “I give this strength to all of those who come next to keep going and to never give up and when you think it’s impossible just remember this piece of advice I got from a very wise woman: I did my best, and my best is good enough.”

The night of historic wins mirrors the film’s record-breaking impact. It previously set the record as the biggest February opening weekend ever, earning an insane $192 million (roughly £137m) in the US in a couple of days. It quickly became the highest-grossing film by a black director.

The impact of its debut even saw the Wakanda salute become a symbol of black solidarity in the months following the film’s release. 

Take a look at why the cast felt the film was vital when we caught up on the red carpet of the London premiere here.