Rihanna and ASAP Rocky slayed the purple carpet in coordinated outfits at Wednesday night’s (October 26) Black Panther: Wakanda Forever premiere in Los Angeles. Their date night marks their first red carpet appearance since welcoming their first child together this spring. It also came hours after Rihanna confirmed “Lift Me Up,” her song from the Wakanda Forever soundtrack due this Friday ahead of Wakanda Forever‘s November 11 theatrical release.
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) October 27, 2022
Elsewhere on the carpet, Blank Panther star Lupita Nyong’o was asked by Variety about Rihanna’s highly anticipated return to music, as she has not released solo material since 2016’s ANTI. “I’m excited to hear the song,” Nyong’o said, noting she hasn’t even heard the 10-second snippet that some press members have. Nyong’o wasn’t the only one in the dark. Rihanna told Disney CEO Bob Chapek, “I don’t even know where the song lies in the film.”
— Variety (@Variety) October 27, 2022
— Entertainment Tonight (@etnow) October 27, 2022
“Lift Me Up” was co-written by Rihanna, Black Panther and Wakanda Forever director Ryan Coogler, Tems, and Ludwig Göransson. Tems shared a statement about the track believed to be a tribute to the late Chadwick Boseman: “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. I tried to imagine what it would feel like if I could sing to them now and express how much I miss them. Rihanna has been an inspiration to me so hearing her convey this song is a great honor.”
Boseman, the titular Black Panther/T’Challa, died in August 2020 after an intensely private battle with cancer. It was decided that his role would not be recast for Wakanda Forever. The beloved actor’s impact can’t be understated. At the premiere, Coogler wore a necklace with a Boseman pendant.
— UPROXX (@UPROXX) October 27, 2022
“Lift Me Up” is out 10/28 via Westbury Road with Def Jam Recordings/Hollywood Records/Roc Nation. Pre-save it here.