Despite the effort made by directors Anthony and Joe Russo to preserve the many secrets of Avengers: Endgame, some of the film’s many stars let slip major spoilers.
One of the tactics used when filming Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame back-to-back was the deployment of fake scripts or, in Spider-Man star Tom Holland’s case, no script at all until the day of shooting.
Even Captain Marvel star Brie Larson, who filmed Endgame before her own solo movie, was kept in the dark: “I flew to Atlanta for my first day on Endgame. I had no idea what I was shooting, what the movie was. I didn’t know if anybody else was in a scene with me. I didn’t know anything,” Larson told Inquirer.
“And it’s not until you show up that you get your pages for the day. But you only get your part. So it was like a scene that was completely black redacted, and then just my one line.”
The cloak and dagger approach is one half concealing spoilers, one half preventing the stars from feeling the pressure of accidentally giving away the film’s biggest spoilers.
“It is very difficult when your job is to sort of personalize these stories, personalize these characters, and sort of bring all your creative, collaborative energy to a process that lasts many, many months — sometimes more than a year — it’s a big part of your life,” Anthony Russo explained in December.
“So it’s very hard not to talk about this stuff, because you live with it for so long and you live with it so deeply. We have developed a process where you take pressure off of people by letting them know less. It’s less responsibility they have to edit themselves, so we’ve developed an elaborate process by which we try to only let people know what they absolutely need to know. And it makes a little bit easier for them to edit themselves.”
During a convention appearance in April 2018, Bucky Barnes star Sebastian Stan revealed he filmed a major scene for an Avengers film and “everybody was there,” including Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer).
Fury appeared in the post-credits tag trailing Infinity War, where couple Hank and Janet did not appear; they were revealed to be victims of the snap committed by Thanos (Josh Brolin) during the mid-credits scene in last summer’s Ant-Man and the Wasp.
Stan was unaware the reunion scene was not part of Infinity War and was under the impression the scene — which we now know was the funeral for Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) — was a wedding.
When promoting Endgame with Evans and co-star Karen Gillan, Ruffalo told E!, “I didn’t even get a whole script of this movie. I don’t know why. The script I did get had dummy scenes in it.”
Then, pointing to Evans, “He gets married in this!”
Evans’ Captain America is sent off when he returns to present day 2023 after living the rest of his life in the past with Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell). Right-hand man Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) is surprised to learn Cap got married during that time.
Pepper Potts star Gwyneth Paltrow unwittingly revealed a spoiler when sharing a behind-the-scenes photo to Instagram, which showed the star wearing a motion capture suit, suggesting Pepper would suit up in her own armor.
This was later confirmed when Paltrow, again posting a behind-the-scenes photo on Instagram, revealed the first look at Pepper’s Rescue armor, a suit she wears when joining husband Tony in battle in the film’s climax.
In May 2018, Paltrow dished on another surprise: in an interview published in the official Avengers: Infinity War Magazine, Paltrow revealed Endgame would find Tony and Pepper as a married couple with a child.
“Pepper and Tony have had a real long journey together,” she said. “She obviously starts as his dutiful assistant, and then the relationship evolves, and now this decade later they’re married, and they have a child. Their relationship has evolved in all of the ways that great romances evolve.”
In its first act, Endgame jumps five years into the future, catching up with Tony and Pepper as a married couple who have since welcomed daughter Morgan (Lexi Rabe). This domestic life was foreshadowed during Infinity War when Tony told Pepper he had an intense dream where they had given birth to a child, named after Pepper’s “eccentric uncle” Morgan.
Frank Grillo — who portrayed Brock Rumlow in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War — reprised his role in Endgame, appearing as part of a 2012-set flashback when Captain America, Tony Stark, Hulk, and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) use time-travel to visit New York during the events of The Avengers.
Appearing on the UFC Unfiltered podcast in October 2018, Grillo said his character “makes an appearance in the next Avengers movie.” Adding the role is a flashback, Grillo said, “I’m allowed to say whatever I want because I’m never doing another Marvel movie.”
Grillo’s Rumlow appears in an elevator alongside other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who, in 2014, will be revealed as traitors loyal to Hydra.
Using his knowledge of the future, Captain America leans in and whispers “hail Hydra” to convince the agents to release the scepter once wielded by Loki (Tom Hiddleston), which was powered by the Mind Stone, one of the six Infinity Stones needed to resurrect the trillions of lives erased from existence by Thanos’ snap.
Both Ruffalo and Gillan revealed they would make new friends during the course of Endgame.
In October 2017, Ruffalo revealed Hulk would become friends with Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) when telling USA Today, “It’s a very funny relationship that the two of them have: First of all, it’s the biggest superhero and the smallest. Just keeping them in a frame together is a feat and hilarious in itself.”
Hulk and Rocket appear together when they travel to Tønsberg, Norway, site of New Asgard, to retrieve Thor (Chris Hemsworth).
Gillan also teased a “new BFF” for Nebula in August 2017, telling Fandango the development was “brilliant and unexpected and just so good.”1comments
Nebula is first paired with Tony Stark as the two, then the last-surviving heroes to have confronted Thanos on Titan, were helplessly stranded in space for three weeks until their rescue by Captain Marvel. This dynamic falls to the wayside when Nebula and Tony are brought to Earth, where Nebula makes friends with Rhodey (Don Cheadle).
Nebula and War Machine are tasked with traveling to 2014 Morag to retrieve the Power Stone before it’s taken by Star-Lord (Chris Pratt).