AVENGERS: ENDGAME: A Captain America/Red Skull Team-Up And More Big Reveals From The Writers At Comic-Con

We've already told you about some of the deleted scenes the writers of Avengers: Endgame revealed at SDCC, but there was a lot more to the panel than that, & we're now breaking down the biggest bombshells.

On Friday afternoon, Avengers: Endgame writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely held a panel at Comic-Con in which they were quizzed on a number of topics about the Marvel Studios movie.

We've already covered the deleted scenes (which you can find by clicking here), but we're now taking a deep dive into the rest of the panel to bring you all the other big reveals. From intel on original plans for the Red Skull to the problem with Professor Hulk, confused test audiences, and some notable, unanswered questions, there's a lot of great content here.

While it may feel like we know all there is to know about Avengers: Endgame at this point, that's definitely not the case - which is evident from the panel these two held in San Diego. We also have a photo of the insane map they put together to plan out the movie's third act!

So, to check out this breakdown in its entirety, all you have to do it hit the "View List" button!

Why Thanos Had To Die


One of Avengers: Endgame's most shocking moments came when Thanos was beheaded by Thor, but it turns out that decision came after the writers simply couldn't figure out what to do with the Mad Titan following the events of Infinity War. "We spent a couple months going, 'What do we do as this guy?'" McFeely said before revealing that they eventually realised they could just kill him. 

That was obviously followed with a five-year time-jump, and dealing with that was very exciting for the writers. "It's delightful to be given that kind of leeway. You say five years later, in your head, you go, 'Oh, we're telling a real story,'" Markus explained. "It is a chance to really see what - this whole movie is about the effects of the last movie... put failure dead centre into the lives of the superheroes and to crush them a little bit... for five years, they have lived with abject failure."

A Captain America/Red Skull Team-Up


Fans have talked a lot about how Captain America must have met the Red Skull when he returned the Soul Stone to Vormir, but that's not something we saw on screen. However, things could have played out much differently and despite not knowing where the villain would end up after he vanished in Captain America: The First Avenger, the writers had some big ideas for him from the start. 

"There's a fascinating one-act play to be written of Captain America going to Red Skull," Markus joked before confirming that it never made it into the script. "[We] never wrote it. In the manifesto document, there was one theory that Cap who goes to space and he has to collaborate with Red Skull to get the Stone." That manifesto was reportedly full of ideas that were never used.

The Multiverse Exists, But What About Alternate Realities?


We were introduced to the Multiverse in Doctor Strange, but Mysterio's lies in Spider-Man: Far From Home have led to many fans thinking it doesn't actually exist. "It clearly exists, because Doctor Strange has talked all about it," MeFeely said. "I have no idea where Kevin Feige is going but I'm a big believer in stakes."

In other words, the filmmakers had no interest in tackling alternate versions of characters. Markus went on to say that, "If you tell people that there are 75 million other Tony Starks out there, then your drama suffers because the stakes are lower."

The Problem With Professor Hulk


We previously told you that the plan was for The Hulk to burst out of the Hulkbuster armour at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, but that was scrapped because it didn't fit into the tone of the final act. The problem was, the Smart Hulk scenes in Avengers: Endgame had already been shot at that point. 

"[We] had already shot Endgame, where he was already Smart Hulk," Markus said before explaining that the solution was adding that scene in the pancake house. "You don't have to explain as much as you think you have to. Okay, he's culmination of Hulk and Banner, just give me a crumb to hold on to. Part of the challenge and part of the pleasure of these two movies is how do you tell everything you need to tell and keep it light enough you're not bogging it down?"
"A really funny scene where Hulk is eating pancakes and it's a scene I haven't seen in a superhero movie," he concluded. 

Why They Love Working With Marvel Studios


"Marvel knows how to foster the writing of a movie. They're not a panic-based studio," Markus said, explaining that some studios start freaking out if there's something they don't like in a first draft. He added that he believes they would have been fired for their early ideas by most, but Marvel Studios worked closely with them to build on those early passes and make a great movie.

"Kevin wants to make a good movie and doesn't want to hear you talking about box office or pressure. He just wants to talk about story," he noted. "So, he says, 'Just stick the landing.' If that means cutting the Guardians, or shrinking it, then do it."

Did Ant-Man Survive The Snap Thanks To The Quantum Realm?


Hank Pym, Janet Van Dyne, and The Wasp were all dusted, but Ant-Man remained trapped in the Quantum Realm. Some fans have theorised that he might have been spared because he was in that mysterious dimension at the time the Mad Titan's attack happened, so is that the case? 

"I think he was coin-flip lucky, because the Stones do not differentiate between realms," Markus reveals. That's very interesting, and it will be fun to see whether this is touched on in any way moving forward, because it could have some major ramifications. 

Confused Test Audiences


If you think that Avengers: Endgame featured a little too much exposition, well, it wasn't there for you! During test screenings, the team working on the movie realised that audiences were struggling to keep up with the idea of time-travel in this shared world. 

"We had to boil our time rules down and it came down to the Stones. The Stones are going to hold the universe in place," Markus explained. "We needed to someone to explain it, and who's the most entertaining explainer in the Marvel Universe? Let's get Tilda [Swinton]!"
"We showed it to some test audiences and every time Nebula shot old Nebula, they didn't get it," McFeely revealed. "We had to go out of our way to exposit the hell out of it." 

Why Thor Wasn't Reunited With Jane Foster


Six months ago, Marvel Studios managed to talk Natalie Portman into returning to the MCU to play the new God of Thunder, so why didn't she make a cameo appearance in Avengers: Endgame?

"We wrote a scene with him and Jane," Markus confirmed. "Jane is not the person to put him back together. Odin is not the person to put him back together. It had to be his mother."
As for why Iron Man was reunited with his father, Markus said: "We've been with Howard a long time and to be able to bring him into a kind of closure with Tony was satisfying. It was very satisfying to take these two and put them together and have them to have a real honest, human moment. To be able to find that emotional core in the most bonkers section of the movie, was really good."

Are There Two Captain Americas In The Same Universe?


There's a lot of confusion about Captain America's trip back in time. Did he remain in the same timeline or simply go to another? Either way, that means there were probably two Caps in existence at the same time, and the writers chose their words carefully about what that might entail. 

When the moderator asked if there was one Cap in ice and another playing golf on a beach with Peggy, Markus said, "Cap doesn't golf," before refusing to get specific with what might have become of Steve Rogers. "There are varying theories. I am much very entertained by that theory."

Iron Man's Final Scene


Robert Downey Jr.'s "I am Iron Man" was improvised, and the writers confirmed that there was originally more to that scene and his final moments as he was reunited with Pepper Potts, Peter Parker, and Rhodey. "When he doesn't talk, you are crushed and [Robert Downey Jr.] knew that... and he said I want to do much, much less, and he was right," McFeely said of Tony's tragic final moments.

Continue reading below to check out 10
huge reveals from Marvel Studios' Hall H panel!


The Eternals Are...Aliens?!


In the comics, the Eternals were created when the Celestials visited Earth over five million years ago and performed genetic experiments on early humans. As well as these immortal beings, the Celestials also created the monstrous Deviants. However, it sounds like the characters could undergo some major changes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 

"The Eternals are arranged of immortal aliens," Richard Madden told the Hall H crowd. "[They're] sent here by the Celestials to protect mankind from the Deviants." In other words, it sounds like the MCU version of the Eternals will be created to counter the Deviants, and could hail from outer space rather than right here on Earth. That's a pretty major change.

"It’s about this group of incredible immortals but through their journey we really get to explore what it means to be human and humanity on our time on this planet," director Chloe Zhao added.

Baron Zemo Is Back...And He's Bringing His Mask!


We heard a while ago that Daniel Bruhl was in talks to return to the MCU as Zemo in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, but that was confirmed at Comic-Con in a pre-taped message from the villain.

After acknowledging that brainwashing Bucky will no longer work, Zemo made it clear that he wasn't out to inflict violence on the panel and instead has something else in mind. "Gentleman, I'll be seeing you very soon," he says before donning his purple mask from the comic books. 

With Sam Wilson expected to suit up as Captain America, this one is going to be very interesting...

Loki Is Back...In 2012


The God of Mischief may have died at the hands of Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, but he's not done yet. Kevin Feige confirmed that the version of Loki we follow in his Disney+ series will be the one who escaped from custody back in 2012 when Iron Man, Ant-Man, and Captain America travelled back in time.

"The question I get asked more than any other question in Endgame was, where did Loki go, and what happened to Loki?" Feige said. "This series will answer where he went."

Tom Hiddleston then explained that this version of the character hasn't undergone the redemption arc the previous version did in Thor: The Dark World. "He's still that guy. Just about the last thing that happened to him is he got Hulk-smashed...There's a lot of psychological evolution yet to happen...I can't tell you any of [the plans] but it is one of the most exciting creative opportunities I've ever come across. A new world. New challenges. And I cannot wait to get started."

WandaVision Leads Into Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness


WandaVision will feature an adult Monica Rambeau, and Elizabeth Olsen promises that "we’re going to finally understand Wanda Maximoff as the Scarlet Witch." Paul Bettany, meanwhile, was saying nothing about how The Vision rises from the dead. "Last thing I knew, I died in Infinity War, so I literally have never been this confused in front of this many people in my whole life."

Proving that these Disney+ TV shows will be unmissable, Olsen will be back as Wanda in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and the events of the series will be pivotal to this sequel.

"He’ll be facing unexpected things," Cumberbatch said of his character in the movie. "I think he’ll be in a position rather like the audience of not knowing what’s coming at him. There was a lot of authority I thought in the Avengers iterations [of Strange], so we’re going back to kind of destroy him, I think." Oh, and while it's set to be a horror film, it will retain its PG-13 rating. 

Blade Is BACK!


The panel ended with those in attendance being given Black Widow caps, but it was then that Kevin Feige brought out Oscar-winning actor Mahershala Ali. The actor had a cap of his own...emblazoned with a new Blade logo! The vampire hunter is returning to the big screen and while the movie doesn't have a release date, the Marvel Studios boss later confirmed that it will be part of Phase 5!

Valkyrie Is The MCU's First Openly Gay Superhero


Kevin Feige has promised that we'll see more diversity in the MCU moving forward, and that was confirmed when Tessa Thompson revealed that a big part of Thor: Love and Thunder will be Valkyrie's quest to "find her new Queen." That is, of course, a reference to the fact that she's currently ruling over New Asgard and Thompson has alluded to the hero being gay for quite some time now. 

Some fans will inevitably hate this, but it follows the comic books and there's already speculation that the "new queen" could be Jane Foster. That seems unlikely, but we'll soon find out! 

The Real Mandarin Is Finally Coming 


It's no secret that a new Shang-Chi movie is on the way, but it being called Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings was definitely a shocker and confirms rumours that The Mandarin is coming to the MCU. Moments later, Tony Leung was brought out on stage and announced as the villain, and while fans will be disappointed about not seeing him battle Iron Man, this promises to be a lot of fun.

After all, there are bound to be references to movies like Iron Man and Iron Man 3, and seeing Shang-Chi in action against this villain (and his sinister organisation) should be downright epic. 

Some Phase 5 Hints


Marvel Studios only revealed its Phase 4 slate at Comic-Con, but Kevin Feige still dropped some huge reveals at the end of the night about what comes next. We've mentioned Blade, but he also named Captain Marvel 2, Black Panther 2, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 as being in development. 

Here's where things got really exciting, however; Feige confirmed that a new version of Fantastic Four is on the way and teased fans by pointing out that they didn't even have time to talk "mutants."

That's not 100% confirmation, but it definitely sounds like we can expect to see both Marvel's First Family and the X-Men arrive during Phase 5 which should make that the biggest Phase yet.

Kate Bishop Will Star In A Hawkeye TV Series


There have been rumblings about a Hawkeye series on Disney+ for a while now and that was confirmed on Saturday with a promo revealing that the show will revolve around both Clint Barton and Kate Bishop. The series is set to deal with the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame and Barton's time as Ronin, and the title treatment was clearly inspired by Matt Fraction and David Aja's comic run. 

According to Jeremy Renner, we'll also see the archer "shepherd an amazing character to hopefully be a better version of [Hawkeye]." This definitely feels like it will be the actor's final appearance as Hawkeye, and while there was no mention of who will be playing Kate, we'll probably hear about that early next year as a premiere date of Fall 2021 has been set which is quite a wait. 

The MCU's New Thor


Last week, we learned that Taika Waititi is returning to direct a fourth Thor movie. Little did we know what he had planned, though. During his appearance at the panel, the filmmaker talked about how he would read Jason Aaron's The Mighty Thor comic book series while shooting Thor: Ragnarok and told fans that there's only one woman he could see playing the female God of Thunder. 

That is Natalie Portman, and despite not being seen in the MCU since 2013's Thor: The Dark World, she's coming back for Thor: Love and Thunder to reprise the role of Jane Foster and become Thor. 

The actress was presented with Thor's hammer by Waititi and held it high above her head. Big changes are coming to the MCU, and while Chris Hemsworth will be making an appearance, it definitely feels like this could be a passing of the torch for the Thor mantle in this shared world. 
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