A scrapped title card included in the Avengers: Endgame screenplay reveals the exact year a time-traveling Captain America(Chris Evans) reunited with long-lost love Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell). Spurred by a sacrifice made by Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Steve Rogers utilized time-travel technology to return the six Infinity Stones to their rightful place in history before choosing to stay in the past and get a life with Peggy after Steve’s own sacrifice — made in 1945 to end the fight against the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) — left him on ice and believed dead for more than 60 years.
In the final pages of Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely's screenplay, a now 112-year-old Steve entrusts the star-spangled shield of Captain America to right-hand man Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in 2023. A transition to Columbia Heights, Washington D.C., is accompanied by a title card: “WASHINGTON D.C., 1949.”
INT. RED HOUSE, COLUMBIA HEIGHTS, WASHINGTON DC - DAY
A TEA CUP LIES SHATTERED on the hardwood. We hear Harry James. Move into the living room...past the record player...
TO WHERE STEVE DANCES WITH A WOMAN. They rock back and forth barely moving. As they turn, we see...
PEGGY CARTER, tears streaming down her face. He steps on her toe. She laughs. As they turn, we get a good look at...
Steve Rogers, eyes shut, finally getting the life he deserves. THE END.
This puts Steve and Peggy's dance two years after the second season of the Peggy-led Agent Carter, the spinoff television series that detailed Peggy's adventures after World War II. 1949 is the same year Peggy ended her tenure with the Strategic Scientific Reserve, which was eventually folded into the Strategic Homeland, Intervention, Enforcement, and Logistics Division — a.k.a. S.H.I.E.L.D. — where Carter would act as its Director.
According to Markus and McFeely, two Captain Americas have existed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since 1945:
“Here’s how we reconcile it. We think there have always been two Caps from 1945 to, say, now, and we just didn’t know that. That’s the loop, right?” McFeely previously told Backstory Magazine. “It’s not Back to the Future rules, it’s branch reality rules. This is not stepping on a butterfly that turns the world into Biff’s casino. You can’t alter your future by going back to the past. We sort of created our own time travel rules wherein, as the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton) says, if you remove an Infinity Stone from a timeline, that creates a branch reality.”
McFeely added Steve “clipped those branches” when sent back through time by Smart Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) to return the displaced Infinity Stones. Steve then jumped nearly 75 years into the past and stayed behind.
“So, his younger self is on ice somewhere and it’s only in 2011 [when Steve is unfrozen] that there are technically two Steves running around — to the point where if you were to look closely at Peggy’s funeral, there’d be an old man in the back named Roger Stevens,” McFeely said.
Other upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, WandaVision in spring 2021, Loki in spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, Spider-Man 3 on July 16, 2021, What If? In summer 2021, Hawkeye in fall 2021, and Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Marvel Studios Disney+ series without release dates include Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, and She-Hulk.