While Crystal Dynamics’ own version of King T’Challa was always meant to be a drastically different interpretation of the character compared to that gifted to MCU fans by Chadwick Boseman, introducing Black Panther to the live service title was never going to be anything other than a sensitive subject.
Boseman’s untimely death sent shockwaves around the world when it was confirmed last year that he had passed after a long battle with colon cancer. His likeness and charisma were so synonymous with Wakanda’s monarch that the actor who would subsequently take the very same role in Marvel’s Avengers initially turned it down.
Christopher Judge, best known for his performance as Kratos in Sony Santa Monica’s 2018 God of War soft reboot, jokingly told Entertainment Weekly back in July that he ultimately took the role upon being threatened with disownment by his family for rejecting such an opportunity, but only after heavy consideration.
In a fascinating twist, Marvel’s Avengers writer Hannah MacLeod reveals in a recent interview with Screen Rant that Judge had always been the team’s first choice for T’Challa, stating, “When we were thinking about who to cast as Blank Panther, we had this dream list of people who were never ever going to say yes, but that was the caliber of T’Challa we were looking for.”
“Chris Judge was number one, but we were like, ‘He’s not going to do it, there’s no way,” she continues, adding that his decision to do so was like a “dream come true situation.”
Marvel’s Avengers‘ War for Wakanda expansion is out now for Xbox One, Series X|S, PS4, PS5, and PC and is due to be followed later this year with the introduction of Spider-Man.