Dave Bautista Claims Marvel Studios Never Asked Him To Return For Disney+'s What If

By Savannah Sanders Updated:
Dave Bautista Drax What If

Marvel Studio's next series What If...? — set to debut August 11 on Disney+ — is much more than just the studio's first animated adventure. This series also looks to explore multiversal elements that could impact the greater MCU. 

Marvel has churned out one series after another in 2021 with a full slate of theatrical releases and additional Disney+ series planned for the latter half of the year. However, in recent weeks, the action and drama that's typically reserved for on-screen have surprisingly made their way into our timeline

In addition to a dispute between Scarlett Johansson and Disney, Marvel actor Dave Bautista is now speaking out about his absence in What If...?


Dave Bautista Drax

Even though more than fifty Marvel actors have reprised their roles for Marvel's upcoming What If...? animated series on Disney+, not everyone received the invitation. 

Guardians of the Galaxy actor Dave Bautista was asked why he didn't provide the voice for his live-action character of Drax for the animated show, to which the actor posted a tweet that read: "Let's start with I was never asked."

Drax What If Tchalla

If this was news to fans, it was apparently news to Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn, who tweeted simply "What" in reply.

Bautista isn't the only MCU live-action actor whose voice isn't being used for the series. Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Brie Larson, Tom Holland, and Scarlett Johansson are also among the ranks of those who aren't lending their vocal talents to their respective characters for What If...? Bautista, however, is the first to comment on why. 


While contractual drama for all to see is relatively new for Disney and Marvel Studios, Dave Bautista has never been one to keep quiet on his thoughts and opinions. In fact, in response to Scarlett Johansson's lawsuit about the terms of Black Widow's release, Bautista tweeted that Disney should've made a Drax-centered movie

The actor has also been surprisingly vocal about his disappointment in how Marvel Studios handled his character and has even expressed doubts about his future within the MCU. Since Bautista has been making these types of comments for some time, it's possible that Marvel Studios and the actor don't see a future beyond him fulfilling the bare minimum of his contract. It's also possible that Drax's role in the animated series wasn't worth the cost of hiring the actor or working out any contractual and/or scheduling issues.

Regardless, the optics of Bautista not being asked to reprise his fan-favorite role of Drax is anything but what Marvel Studios and Disney needs right now, and it probably won't help their rocky relationship with the actor. 

What If...? debuts August 11 on Disney+.

- In This Article: What If...? (Season 2)
Release Date
December 22, 2023
Jeffrey Wright
- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.