Avengers: Endgame is fast approaching, and while that’s super exciting, it’s also bittersweet. The MCU will change, and we’re guessing a lot of actors we’ve grown accustomed to seeing over the past decade will no longer don their heroic roles for future films. In no particular order, here’s a list of some of the actors we’re guessing won’t be around for Phase 4 and beyond
Robert Downey Jr.
The actor, who helped kick off the MCU with Iron Man, will likely get a send-off of some kind in Avengers: Endgame, although we’re not entirely sure what will happen. That said, Endgame will probably bring a permanent end to Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark considering his contract is up and he hasn’t been cheap to bring on these past few adventures.
Killing Iron Man seems like the obvious way to write off Robert Downey Jr., and it would be a callback to the hero almost sacrificing his life to save the world in The Avengers. If Stark doesn’t die, he must be somewhere far removed from his superhero life, as he hasn’t been spotted in any Spider-Man: Far From Home footage just yet. Nick Fury stepping in to instruct the young hero may mean Stark’s not doing the job anymore, so what happened?
Of all the main Avengers who won’t be in another MCU movie following Avengers: Endgame, Hawkeye seems like the safest bet. Jeremy Renner’s character hasn’t been a major fixture in the MCU in general, and he was nowhere to be found throughout the events of Avengers: Infinity War. Renner has expressed interest in a standalone Hawkeye movie, but warned it’d have to happen sooner than later due to his increasing age.
Marvel doesn’t seem to be interested in making a Hawkeye movie, however, so his last hurrah might be coming in Avengers: Endgame. If that’s true, it could be as good of a send off as any, as the hero has donned the identity of Ronin and could be getting his most meaningful story arc to date. Hawkeye could die, but given that he’s known to hang out with his family and skip out on adventures, he may just retire.
Tom Hiddleston’s Loki died in Avengers: Infinity War, and while some have been skeptical on whether or not this death will stick, there’s evidence that says it might. For starters, rumors surrounding Loki’s upcoming Disney+ series have mentionedHiddleston will not be the star of the series, and may have a lesser role as a narrator. There’s also a rumor this tale follows a young Loki, which means the villain may be recast.
If that’s the case, there’s a good chance that Avengers: Endgame won’t feature Loki showcasing how he managed to cheat death once again. Unless his cheating death involved reincarnating into a child, of course, which has happened before. In either case, Hiddleston can’t play an age as low as Kid Loki, so his time in the MCU is likely up if these rumors hold true.
The Hulk has been one of the most exciting MCU characters to date, so it’s a shame Marvel hasn’t gotten to utilize the character as much as it would’ve liked. Despite that, Mark Ruffalo revealed that Kevin Feige approached him about creating a story arc for the character that began in Thor: Ragnarok, and ends in Avengers: Endgame. That would seemingly be a good place to end the character’s run, especially given Ruffalo’s contract is up soon.
With that said, it’s interesting to think of what the final part of Hulk’s character arc may be. Thor: Ragnarok established Hulk as a separate person and Avengers: Infinity War showed Bruce stepping up to fight when Hulk was too afraid. Avengers: Endgame might see the merging of the two personalities into Professor Hulk, which would may keep the character alive, but keep Ruffalo off-screen. Hulk could also die, although we’re hoping Marvel won’t “smash” our hearts like that.