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Why Robert Downey Jr. Hesitated To Film Iconic Iron Man Endgame Scene

By Mabel Judith Andrady
October 26,2021

At first, Robert Downey Jr. was apprehensive about filming the iconic Iron Man scene in Avengers: Endgame. Iron Man, directed by Jon Favreau in 2008, was the first film in the MCU to feature the actor for the role of Tony Stark. During that period, Downey has appeared in ten movies as the title character. Avengers: Endgame, directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, marked the finale of the Infinity Saga in 2019.

Tony Stark and his heroic career ended tragically, but it did so in a mature manner. Because to 2014 Thanos, Iron Man realized that even with Smart Hulk’s reverse snap, those who perished in the snap may be brought back to life. In the end, he paid the ultimate price for the future of the universe by sacrificing his own life.

The Infinity Stones had been seized from the Mad Titan by Tony and were now part of his gauntlet. To Thanos’ earlier declaration of “I am inevitable,” he responded with “I am Iron Man.” A nod to the first Iron Man movie, in which the character said the same thing to affirm his superhero status. However, Downey supposedly refused to shoot the iconic Iron Man scene, therefore it never happened.


An insight into the conversation between Feige and Anthony Russo

Note that in the original Endgame cut, Iron Man said nothing. However, the Russo brothers came up with the concept of the hero saying his famous statement while editing the film. When Downey learned of the upcoming reshoots, it was too late for him to agree to participate in them. This is explained by Kevin Feige and Anthony Russo, the men behind the MCU, in their new tome titled The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Take a look at what they had to say:

RDJ chose to not re-shoot

Because RDJ didn’t want to play the part again, director Anthony Russo claimed that he refused to shoot the iconic Iron Man scene. Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame was an emotional experience for everyone involved. This was especially so as the culmination of the first decade’s worth of MCU storytelling. It’s safe to infer, however, that Downey had a particularly difficult time with it because he’d been a part of the series from the beginning.

Robert Downey Jr. aka The Iron-man

Having played Iron Man for over ten years, knowing his time as the character was coming to an end must have been terrible for him. It transformed his whole life, too. RDJ had to psychologically prepare for the final defining moment of this iconic Iron Man scene. The fact that they had to reshoot the sequence when he decided to return at a Los Angeles stage in Raleigh Studio just makes things that much more difficult. It’s just next door to the one where he did his pre-production testing on Iron Man back in the late 2000s. So, it would certainly bring back memories for him.

When it comes to bringing RDJ back into the MCU, Marvel Studios has options. This can be done without rewriting the events of Avengers: Endgame, thanks to the multiverse. In any case, it’s best if they don’t, especially given how recently his excellent farewell concert took place. Although Tony Stark does not appear in the movies, his legacy continues to have an impact on how the universe will evolve long after he is no longer in the picture.

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