Chadwick Boseman’s sudden and tragic death has shaken the Marvel Cinematic Universe to its core. The actor left a lasting impression on the character of T’Challa/Black Panther. Exactly how the franchise will carry on without him remains to be seen.
However, it is possible that Chadwick Boseman might have one final performance as T’Challa/Black Panther in the works.
One of the many Marvel Studios projects that were announced for Disney+ was What If…?, an animated series that looks at alternate universe stories within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The show is inspired by the Marvel comic book series of the same name. In the series, an omnipotent being who is known as Uatu the Watcher narrates these deviations from the timeline.
The series plans to cover a large swath of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and will feature voice acting from most of the notable actors in the franchise. This includes Chadwick Boseman. It is rumored that Boseman had already recorded all of his dialogue for the series and will be appearing in at least one episode as T’Challa/Black Panther.
Whether or not this is true remains to be seen, but it should be said that voice actors for animated shows often record their dialogue far in advance of any finalized animation. Usually, the voice actors will return to the studio to do additional dialogue recording (ADR) once the animation is locked in. It’s possible that only Chadwick Boseman’s recorded pieces will be used in the final mix. Otherwise, the editors would either have to assemble dialogue from other recordings of Boseman or bring in a soundalike to finish up any necessary bits of dialogue.
So, it is possible that there is one final performance from Chadwick Boseman as TChalla/Black Panther. While it is deeply sad that this could be the final time we’ll get to see (or rather, hear) the iconic actor as his landmark character, it is somewhat reassuring to know that his performance will live on. People are clearly attached to his version of the character. ABC recently ran Black Panther with no commercial interruptions as a tribute to Boseman and the ratings reflected how much people love this film and character.
Hopefully, Disney can provide confirmation in regards to this rumor. If Chadwick Boseman did finish all of the necessary voice recordings for What If…?, then the animated series will act as an unintentional sendoff for one of the best superhero actors of our generation. What If…? is scheduled to debut on Disney+ in 2021 at some point in the middle of the year.
It is very likely that we will get an update to the show’s status before 2020 comes to an end. If it really is the last performance of Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa/Black Panther, it’s almost certain that Disney will want to call attention to that. Here’s hoping that if it is his last time as the character, it leaves him on a note that’s as inspirational as T’Challa himself.