Marvel Was Planning A What If...? Spin-Off For Star-Lord T'Challa

Marvel's "What If...?" animated series is now streaming its season 1 finale on Disney+, and with it, comes the last known performance from the late, great Chadwick Boseman, who lent his voice to four episodes this season. Before Boseman's untimely death, it seems that there were plans for a spin-off involving his character.

In "What If...?" season 1, Boseman reprised his role as T'Challa, but for the most part, it was a different T'Challa than the one we saw in the "Black Panther" movie. The second episode, "What If... T'Challa Became a Star-Lord?" introduced a character who was not the king of Wakanda but a Ravager, a kind of Robin Hood in space who took Peter Quill's place as the surrogate son of the blue-skinned Yondu (Michael Rooker).

Creator A.C. Bradley and director Bryan Andrews recently spoke with Variety, where they discussed the recording timeline for Boseman with his episodes. He passed away not long after the final session. All of his season 1 episodes were in the bank, but there was no additional material, so fans shouldn't expect to hear his voice in season 2. "I think he was also trying to make an effort," Andrews said, "because T'Challa was so important to him." He continued:

"I don't know if [Chadwick] knew this, but there was planning to have Star-Lord T'Challa spin off into his own show with that universe and crew. We were all very excited. We know he would have loved it, too. And then, you know, he passed, and so all that's in limbo. So, who knows? Maybe one day."

If you haven't seen the season 1 finale of "What If...?," you should probably go watch it before reading any further. Consider this your spoiler warning.

What to Expect in Season 2

The season 1 finale of "What If...?" retroactively tied each episode of the anthology back in together, as the Watcher (Jeffrey Wright) broke his oath of non-interference and played cosmic Nick Fury, recruiting heroes from across various alternate realities into a Guardians of the Multiverse team. The finale picked up where the at-times perplexing cliffhangers of previous episodes left off and managed to retroactively give the whole season some cohesion beyond the concept of the Watcher watching different timelines.

T'Challa Star-Lord was one of the heroes who assembled to save the multiverse from an Infinity Stone-powered Ultron. Another was a version of Gamora (voiced by Cynthia McWilliams instead of Zoe Saldana), who he plucked from a parallel universe where Tony Stark (voiced by Mick Wingert instead of Robert Downey, Jr.) could be seen melting down the Infinity Gauntlet while talking about putting a suit of armor around the galaxy.

Gamora and Space Iron Man didn't actually get their own episode this season, but there's a very good reason for that, and they will definitely be back next season. Bradley explained:

"Basically what happened was we originally had an episode planned for earlier in the season that was a fun, light-hearted, living, breathing Tony Stark-centric episode with Gamora. However, due to the COVID pandemic, one of our animation houses was hit incredibly hard, and the episode needed to be pushed into Season 2, because it would not be finished in time. Given everything that we've all went through over the past two years, pushing an episode of television is absolutely nothing in comparison. And we understood. We hope fans enjoy the ride next year."

The season 1 finale of "What If...?" is streaming now on Disney+.