Boseman Returns One More Time in “What If …?”
It was a wild ride for Marvel last week. On Wednesday, Marvel delivered an epic second-to-last episode of “Loki.” Friday, the Marvel Cinematic Universe released its first feature film since “Spider-Man: Far From Home” in July 2019 with “Black Widow.” Then, unexpectedly sandwiched between those two goliaths, a new trailer debuted for the original Disney+ animated series, “What If … ?”
“What If … ?” explores branch timelines in the Marvel Universe, showing exactly how alternative realities might play out. Featuring the majority of the live-action cast as voice talent, “What If …?” is Marvel Studios’ first animated show.
A notable central character is the powerful Black Panther portrayed by the brilliant Chadwick Boseman one last time. The series started development back in 2019. This allowed Boseman to record his lines before his shocking death in August 2020 at the age 43 from colon cancer.
T’Challa will be much different than the last time we saw him in “Avengers: Endgame.” The trailer reveals that he is not, in fact, the King of Wakanda. Instead, he is kidnapped by Yondu and becomes Star Lord. Chris Pratt usually portrays the “Guardians of the Galaxy” renegade in the original timeline.
T’Challa’s Star Lord appears to be on a similar path as we see him entering the temple on Morag to burglar the Power Stone. We later see him saved by Yondu’s magic arrow when he is surrounded by a band of armed Sakaarans. It’s unclear if any of the other parts of the trailer relate to this timeline. We do see other Black Panther characters in the trailer, including Kilmonger, Shuri and Romanda.
Boseman showed his versatility and originality when he created the dialect of the Wakandan king himself during pre-production on “Captain America: Civil War.” The character became a symbolic figure of representation and inclusion the world over.
Boseman’s Film Legacy
Prior to his passing, Boseman also gained much-earned acclaim for portraying important historical figures like Jackie Robinson and James Brown. The esteemed actor received Posthumous Best Actor awards from both the Screen Actors Guild and the Golden Globes for his work as Levee Green in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.”
“He would say something beautiful, something inspiring, something that would amplify that little voice inside of all of us that tells you you can,” said Boseman’s widow Taylor Simone Ledward as she accepted the Golden Globe in his honor earlier this year. “That tells you to keep going, that calls you back to what you are meant to be doing at this moment in history.”
His inspiring and powerful work continues on in one more piece with “What If …?” The show premieres on Disney+ on August 11th.
Feature Image Credit: Marvel