The movies from Marvel Studios continue to endure popularity years after they've been released in theaters, especially Robert Downey Jr.'s universe-spawning debut in Iron Man. And one of the reasons why these movies remain so beloved by fans is the amount of details packed into the film's runtime. Now over a decade after the film first released in theaters, one Iron Man fan is pointing out a sly tribute to the first major villain in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — and it celebrates one of actor Jeff Bridges' fan-favorite roles.
In the film, Pepper Potts accesses some of Obadiah Stane's dirty dealings for Stark weapons. During her investigation she sees a shipping manifest for the Navy, specifically for the Military Sealift Command vessel called the Lebowski. Further down the manifest, there's a reference to "rugs that really tie the room together."
In Iron Man (2008) when pepper is looking through the under the table shipping manifest which were set up by Iron Monger (Jeff Bridges) the vessel is called the MSC Lebowski. from r/marvelstudios
This reference to The Big Lebowski will likely put a smile on the faces of many Coen Brothers fans. Bridges earned cult-favorite status with his role as the Dude, the reluctant protagonist in a plot that involves nihilist ninjas, a botched ransom, and ashes in a Folgers can. The fact that Marvel Studios referenced it in their first movie, as well as in this year's epic crossover Avengers: Endgame, shows how enduring the film has become over the decades since its release in theaters.
In Avengers: Endgame, Thor has packed on some pounds and began drinking massive amounts of beer in the five years since he took his axe to Thanos' head. And when the team finally comes up with a new plan to save the world, Iron Man makes a comment about Thor and refers to him as "Lebowski."
Maybe we'll get another Big Lebowski reference in a Marvel Studios movie ten years down the line.