Joss Whedon's original Avengers film is regarded as one of the best movies in Marvel's output thus far, and rightly so. It brought together the long awaited team with a blend of humor and action that is only rivaled by the also stellar Guardians of the Galaxy. While there are many favorite moments in the film, always included in that discussion is the shawarma scene, which takes place after the credits roll.
Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige recently guested on the Maltin on Movies podcast (via Nerdist) and described how the scene was conceived. "We used to talk about, as I was saying earlier, the fun of the characters. We used to talk about the Avengers riding a bus together, or the Avengers all sitting around at a dinner table together, and they are around a table on a helicarrier briefly in the movie but we never quite have done, something about these spectacular extraordinary people doing the most mundane thing possible."
The idea finally came to them, but thanks to the late timing of it things got considerably more tricky. Feige said "I think Joss said "we should've had them eating shawarma at the end. Just all exhausted" and I said, "That's the greatest idea I've ever heard in my entire life." I said, of course, we have to do that, and the thought was well you can't get all of them together now. And then executive producer Jeremy Latch went to my then assistant Jonathan Schwartz and said, or maybe he was an associate producer on Avengers and said "the premiere is going to be at the El Capitan. Get a map and find every shawarma restaurant in a two block radius of the El Capitan. He went okay and goes into his car. He takes all these pictures, comes back, and says "Joss, take a look and choose which location do you want", and he looks and goes "for the shawarma scene?" He said, "you guys are crazy! Can we actually do that?"
They would certainly try. "Well, we're doing the premiere, then we're doing the junkets, so this is the only time all the actors will be together again," said Feige. "Go get a van, take them from the junket, get in costume, take them to this shawarma restaurant. It's only one shot, shoot it, and have it. I called Robert first and said "Robert we have this idea. to go from the junket to shooting and you're just there eating shawarma and he goes "Well that's so crazy we have to do it." So cut to a few weeks later and all the Avengers are sitting around this shawarma restaurant eating it. Chris Evans has a giant beard as he often grows for other films in between movies, he had a big beard. So we put this prosthetic face on him that looked horrific, which is why if you watch the scene again he's covering his face."
After the scene was shot, the group went into overdrive. "Then a handful of us and our editor Jeff Ford sat in the back of the camera truck choosing the exact 7 seconds, 10 seconds we wanted to use because it had to go right to the mix stage and right into the prints."
That's an insane amount of work for a 7 to 10-second snippet, but it was ultimately worth it, and fit the film's tone like a glove.
Next up for Marvel is Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 on May 5, 2017. Spider-Man: Homecoming lands on July 7, 2017, followed by Thor: Ragnarok on November 3, 2017. After that Black Panther debuts on February 16, 2018, while Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on May 4, 2018. Ant-Man and the Wasp is slated for July 6, 2018, followed by Captain Marvel on March 8, 2019.