The singer’s first new song in six years is a tribute to the late “Black Panther” star, set for the upcoming “Wakanda Forever” soundtrack.
Fans were stunned and moved when Rihanna released her first new song in six years, a gorgeous tribute to Chadwick Boseman for the upcoming “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” film.
Over the weekend, she followed its release with the official music video, a subtle and beautiful peek into the world of loss and those who must find a way to carry on.
How Rihanna Was Convinced to Return to Music for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Interspersed with images from the upcoming sequel to the billion-dollar blockbuster “Black Panther,” Rihanna herself is a vision in white on a sunset beach as she belts out her beautiful message of loss. The track was written by Tems, Oscar winner Ludwig Göransson, Rihanna and director Ryan Coogler
“After speaking with Ryan and hearing his direction for the film and the song, I wanted to write something that portrays a warm embrace from all the people that I’ve lost in my life,” Rihanna. I tried to imagine what it would feel like if I could sing to them now and express how much I miss them,” said Tems. “Rihanna has been an inspiration to me so hearing her convey this song is a great honor.”
Rihanna has been away from solo music for the past six years, with this film’s soundtrack marking her big return. Aside from this tribute piece for the late Boseman, who passed away in 2020 after a long and secret battle with cancer, she has contributed another song.
“Rihanna has given us a whole career and now she’s given us makeup and clothing and I think the world would understand if she hung up her mic and I’d completely understand,” Coogler said of the multi-hyphenate star during a press conference on Friday. “I feel like she’s given us all we could ask for.”
First Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Trailer Drops — Everything Marvel at Comic-Con 2022 Hall H Panel!
That being said, he added that they were “looking for a great artist who could tell the story of the film and present it to the audience in a different packaging,” like Kendrick Lamar had done with the soundtrack on the first movie. He added that, this time around and due to the prominence of female characters in the film, “it made sense it would be a woman” and also “made sense it could be someone who could speak to the feeling of motherhood.”
“I think it timed up that she was in that kind of space in her life,” he added of Rihanna, who recently welcomed her first child with A$AP Rocky. “She was open and it was really the trailer, when she saw the performances everybody was putting down in the trailer, that made her say, ‘I want to see that film and see if I can figure it out.'”
The soundtrack featuring “Lift Me Up,” “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – Music From and Inspired By” will be released November 4. “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” hits theaters Nov. 11, 2022.