Christopher Judge — who players will recognize as the voice of Kratos from God of War (2018) — will voice King T’Challa, aka the Black Panther, in Marvel’s Avengers’ War for Wakanda expansion. Entertainment Weekly broke the news of Judge’s casting on Thursday. Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics will launch the War for Wakanda expansion, which will add Black Panther to Marvel’s Avengers’ playable roster, sometime this August.
According to Judge, the actor initially didn’t want to follow in the late Chadwick Boseman’s footsteps. “I turned it down straight away,” Judge told EW. “There’s many Black Panthers, but I really didn’t believe that anyone should ever do T’Challa again [after Boseman]. The actual talks proceeded and, basically, I wound up doing it because my mother and my children said if I didn’t do it, they would disown me.”
Judge said he wanted to do something different, and the character of T’Challa is quite a bit older in War for Wakanda than in Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther film. Crystal Dynamics’ version of Black Panther has been king for some time, and he’s confident in his role. “Chadwick’s performance was somebody who had more questions about how to perform the role of Black Panther and king. This version doesn’t have those questions,” said Evan Narcisse, a story consultant on War for Wakanda and writer of Marvel’s Rise of the Black Panther series.
Both Narcisse and Hannah MacLeod, War for Wakanda’s narrative lead, promised some significant changes and twists to the Black Panther story players might know from the movies or comics.
The Entertainment Weekly interview also dropped some interesting information about the expansion itself, which reportedly takes the total run time for all of Marvel’s Avengers story content — including already released campaigns for the base game, Hawkeye, and Kate Bishop — to 25 hours. Judge, Narcisse, and MacLeod will all appear on a Marvel’s Avengers livestream this Friday at 1 p.m. EDT to discuss the upcoming expansion.
Players will learn more about Judge’s version of T’Challa when Marvel’s Avengers ninth playable character enters the game next month.
Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the War for Wakanda expansion would run 25 hours. A representative for Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix clarified that War for Wakanda will take the game’s total story content to 25 hours. We’ve also corrected the spelling of Hanna MacLeod’s name throughout the piece.