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What If…? director talks replacing Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers in the premiere

Josh Keaton as Steve Rogers in What If...?
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Your ears aren’t deceiving you – that’s not Chris Evans voicing Steve Rogers in the What If…? premiere.

The Captain America actor didn’t return for Marvel Studios’ first tentative steps into animation and Josh Keaton (who has prior history voicing superheroes in The Spectacular Spider-Man series) was parachuted in as a replacement.

We recently sat down with What If…? director Bryan Andrews to discuss the impossible job of recasting the likes of Chris Evans – and why the new voice should be more than just a good impression.

"We had a certain degree of freedom. Schedules are crazy, so it’s really hard to get everybody. But the ones we had come in to take over did a fantastic job," director Bryan Andrews says.

"The thing is, it’s trying not to bump the audience too much and have it be as much of the person they remember from the show, but having the actor bring a little something to themselves. I’m not just doing an impression. It’s not about impressions, right? They have to actually act the moments and deliver some of the emotional intent."

The end result of the likes of Keaton, who played a scrawnier Steve Rogers stepping into the Hydra Stomper suit, turned out well for Andrews and the team.

"They did that really, really well and we got some really great people that were able to come in, step in, and help us out."

What If…? is still packed with stars – including Chadwick Boseman’s final performance after his untimely passing last August. New episodes are streaming weekly on Wednesdays on Disney Plus.

Find out what else the MCU has in store with our guide to new Marvel TV shows.

Bradley Russell

I'm the 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.