With the launch of Disney+ last week, there’s plenty more content coming from the popular streaming service in the not too distant future. One of the scheduled projects is the What If…? series, based on the ideas of the comic book arc from the 1970s which explained how the most famous moments in Marvel’s history would’ve unfolded if key moments hadn’t occurred. Well, Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman had a “what if” moment of his own regarding the Marvel Cinematic Universe, where he could’ve wound up portraying a much different superhero.
In a recent interview on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Boseman admitted that before he played T’Challa on the big screen, he met with the casting director of Guardians of the Galaxy and auditioned for Drax the Destroyer, which ultimately went to WWE Superstar Dave Bautista. Losing out to Bautista, Boseman – fresh off of playing Jackie Robinson in 42 – didn’t think he’d land the role, even working off just a couple of lines of dialogue. And it couldn’t have worked out much better, as Boseman went on to star in one of Marvel’s most acclaimed and profitable films, which was nominated for Best Picture at the 2019 Academy Awards.
“It was just good to come in and play and see what they did with it,” he said. “Sometimes that’s the way it works as an actor. You go in knowing you’re not going to get it but you know you’re meeting the people that are going to be like ‘He’s not this, but we’ll put him in this other thing.’ I feel like that was one of the moments where they were like ‘We can use him later.’”
When one door closes, another one opens and the actor believes it could have been that audition that helped him land Black Panther, since the folks at Marvel were familiar with him. Boseman was conducting the interview to promote his new film 21 Bridges, which is actually produced by The Avengers’ Russo Brothers but don’t worry, it was recently announced that he will reprise his role as the Black Panther for the sequel, set to hit theaters in 2022. He’s also rumored to be working on four other future films.