Marvel leak seemingly confirms Tony Stark's MCU return in What If series

Tony Stark
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Tony Stark could be making a triumphant return to the MCU – with a twist. A leaked Lego set has seemingly confirmed something that has been rumored for some time: the upcoming animated What If series could showcase an alternate reality for Robert Downey Jr.'s suited and booted billionaire.

As revealed by Lego_Fulcrum on Instagram (H/T, a potentially new Lego playset shows off a curious sight: Tony Stark is in a Sakaarian Iron Man suit, flanked by what appears to be the Watcher and Valkyrie. Take it with a grain of salt, but the account has been proven right with leaks in the past.

That hints at Tony Stark, not Thor, heading to the trash planet of Sakaar in a fun retelling of Thor: Ragnarok. In live-action, Thor crash-landed on Sakaar and took part in the Grandmaster's Contest of Champions,  even fighting his "friend from work", Hulk.

For the uninitiated, the premise of What If is to present a sideways look at how major MCU events could have gone differently if certain characters and story beats were swapped around. Loki wielding Mjolnir instead of Thor is one such concept and, if this merchandise rings true, the God of Thunder may yet be replaced again.

No official word yet from Marvel, nor do we know if Robert Downey Jr. will be voicing the character after (spoilers for one of the biggest movies of all time) Tony Stark perished after defeating Thanos by snapping his own Infinity Gauntlet in Avengers: Endgame.

Curiously, Jeff Goldblum – who played the Grandmaster in Thor: Ragnarok – hinted in a 2019 video with Buzzfeed that he'd be returning to the role in What If – alongside Robert Downey Jr.

"I went to the Disney studios and I recorded the Grandmaster's voice for an episode of a show that's gonna be on Disney Plus that's called What If. It's an animated version of all the characters we know and love from Marvel and this episode included the Grandmaster and Iron Man, so Robert Downey will do a voice for that," Goldblum said at the time.

What If is set to premiere on Disney Plus this August. First up is Loki, with the God of Mischief setting about atoning for his temporal sins in a six-part time travel series starting on June 9. Then, Black Widow. Scarlett Johansson's standalone prequel also stars Rachel Weisz, Florence Pugh, and David Harbour.

For more on what else is coming your way in the MCU, check out our complete guides to Marvel Phase 4 and all the new Marvel TV shows currently in the works.

Bradley Russell

I'm the Senior Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, focusing on news, features, and interviews with some of the biggest names in film and TV. On-site, you'll find me marveling at Marvel and providing analysis and room temperature takes on the newest films, Star Wars and, of course, anime. Outside of GR, I love getting lost in a good 100-hour JRPG, Warzone, and kicking back on the (virtual) field with Football Manager. My work has also been featured in OPM, FourFourTwo, and Game Revolution.