Don Cheadle Teases War Machine’s Future In The MCU

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The character may have never gotten his own solo movie, but over the last decade, Colonel James Rhodes has turned out to be one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most important supporting players. Outside of acting as Tony Stark’s friend, confidant and conscience in the Iron Man franchise, Rhodey has also featured in three Avengers movies, played a pivotal role in Captain America: Civil War, and even popped up in Captain Marvel’s mid-credits scene.

With ties to the military, government, S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Avengers, Rhodey and his armored alter-ego War Machine can realistically be dropped into any of the MCU’s standalone franchises without having to make too much of a narrative leap of faith, but there hasn’t exactly been many people clamoring for Don Cheadle to be rewarded with his own spinoff.

At one stage, Marvel were considering it following the positive reception to Cheadle replacing Terrence Howard in Iron Man 2, but ultimately the studio decided against it once they had chosen the creative direction for Tony Stark’s third adventure. More recently, rumors indicated that a War Machine series exclusive to Disney Plus was under consideration, but following the culmination of the Infinity Saga and the huge number of shows already announced for the streaming service, it now seems unlikely.

In a recent interview, Cheadle was asked about a potential return to the MCU in the future, and while the 55 year-old admitted that he wasn’t sure if Rhodey would be back, he dropped some hints about where he’d like to take the character in a possible spinoff.

“If there were to be one, I’d really want to dig into him and maybe even find something that felt closet to the first Iron Man, for who he was. I think they can go anywhere with him now. I really don’t know. I haven’t given it much thought, as far as which would be, or it either would even be. That was an eleven year journey.”

It seems interesting that Cheadle directly refers to one of Rhodey’s MCU appearances that he wasn’t involved in, and perhaps hints at some dissatisfaction about his role in the franchise. Some fans were critical of how War Machine was reduced to a wise-cracking sidekick across Infinity War and Endgame, which the actor had a great reply to. However, there seems to be little place for Rhodey without Tony Stark. Although, the Russo’s original idea of making him Vice President after Endgame’s time jump was a fascinating possibility.

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