As its name implies, the Hulkbuster armor seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe needs to be strong enough to stand up against the Hulk, with the video above shared by Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo confirming the stature of the suit in the real world. The practical suit was seemingly used while shooting Avengers: Infinity War, as Bruce Banner's difficulties turning into the Hulk saw him resort to using the Hulkbuster armor. The complexities of the suit required it to be brought to life using CGI, though having a scale model of the suit likely helped the staging of certain sequences for the film.
The Hulkbuster armor debuted in Avengers: Infinity War as a way for Iron Man to neutralize the Hulk after Scarlet Witch used her magic to invoke the beast. The bout has become one of the most memorable fight scenes in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, as it was a rare case of a character holding their own against Hulk. With Thor: Ragnarok, fans were given yet another exciting battle, with both Thor and Hulk thinking they walked away from their clash the victor.
In the opening of Infinity War, Hulk went up against Thanos, with many audiences thinking Banner's alter ego would have the best shot at taking down the Mad Titan. Instead, Thanos tossed Hulk into space, with the Avenger lucky to end up in Heimdall's Rainbow Bridge to catch a ride back to earth. After Bruce Banner's crash landing, Hulk wasn't seen again until audiences met Smart Hulk in Endgame.
Hulk's evolution into Smart Hulk for Endgame allowed him to have an all-new dynamic with the rest of the film's characters, but ultimately deprived viewers of a rematch between him and Thanos. According to co-writer Stephen McFeely, it was never in the cards for the characters to fight.
“The battle had all sorts of stuff in it. I don’t know how long that battle is now, but it’s not as long as you might think,” co-writer Stephen McFeely told Backstory Magazine. “I know a lot of people were saying they can’t wait for [Hulk and Thanos’] rematch. Well, that would’ve made sense had he not become Smart Hulk. He’s a whole different thing, and that’s not what drives him. So we never thought, ‘Oh, he really is trying to get a crack at Thanos now.’”
Avengers: Endgame is available now on home video. Stay tuned for details on Hulk's future in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.