Chadwick Boseman Wanted ‘Black Panther 2’ To Be Like His ‘What If?’ Episode
The late Chadwick Boseman’s final performance as Black Panther’s T'Challa comes in an episode of Marvel's new animated series What If...?, which reimagines noteworthy MCU events in unexpected ways. According to Marvel head Kevin Feige, Boseman was inspired by the new “voice” found in his What If...? episode, and wanted to incorporate his character discoveries in Black Panther 2.
“We didn’t know it would be his final performance, obviously. He came in numerous times, I think three or four times. He was so gung-ho about it, he was so excited about it," Feige told Variety. “Somebody has probably spoken about this already, but he came in, and read the episode that airs 24 hours from now, and then came back and said, ‘I really love this version of T’Challa. And we had a conversation after that, with Ryan [Coogler] about how we can get some of this voice, not the storyline, but just some of that voice, into [Black] Panther 2.”
Following the success of Black Panther in 2018, Boseman was set to star in the Ryan Coogler-directed sequel, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. But the actor was battling late-stage colon cancer, a private struggle he kept from the public until his passing in August of 2020. Black Panther 2 has recently started filming in Atlanta, and will pay homage to Boseman’s character of T’Challa.
Feige went on to describe the experience in retrospect as “remarkably sad and bittersweet.” At the same time, Boseman’s What If...? episode is a final gift to his fans, giving us all one more chance to experience the dynamic Marvel hero he embodied. “I’m really happy we had him, and I’m really happy he did it for us. I’m excited for the fans to see that as well,” said Feige.
What If...? is streaming now on Disney+. New episodes premiere every Wednesday.
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