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Jeremy Renner Breaks His Silence On Avengers: Endgame

Guess who's back, back again? Hawkeye's back — and, like, we'd advise you to tell a friend, but it's almost guaranteed that you and everyone you know has been screaming about the hero's return since the moment the Avengers: Endgame trailer dropped. 

One person who hasn't — until very recently — directly addressed Clint Barton flying back into the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the man behind the bow and arrow himself: Jeremy Renner. Sure, the actor has been teasing fans for months on end about his connection to the fourth Avengers film, posting plenty of cheeky snaps on Instagram with captions like "Starting my week doing, what do you think?" and "Circling the wagons with my good friends @marvel @avengers," but Renner has kept quiet about how exactly Hawkeye will fit into the upcoming movie. 

That all changed when Marvel Studios rolled out the trailer for Endgame, which revealed Renner back in action not as Hawkeye but as Hawkeye's alter-ego Ronin. After the trailer debuted, Renner swiftly took to Twitter to share the footage that Marvel tweeted out that morning. The actor celebrated his longed-for return to the Avengers franchise by writing, "Good to see you all again! Coming in hot!"

Clearly unable to contain his excitement about Hawkeye playing a part in Endgame, Renner then headed to his Instagram account and uploaded the first poster for the film. "Anyone seen the trailer??" the actor captioned the one-sheet, which confirmed that Endgame is coming a week early on April 26, 2019. Renner's question is definitely a silly one to ask, since the trailer racked up 289 million views in the first 24 hours and set a new record, but cheekiness clearly is his brand. 

When Marvel fans first learned that Hawkeye wouldn't appear in Avengers: Infinity War, the rumor mill began churning at record pace, cranking out theory after theory regarding the hero's whereabouts. Infinity War explained — in a quick exchange you might have missed if you were munching too loudly on your popcorn — that Hawkeye and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) were absent from the action as a result of the plea bargains they took following the chaos of Captain America: Civil War. Due to the conditions of the deal, which the pair of vigilantes entered after they escaped from prison and violated the Sokovia Accords at the end of Civil War, Hawkeye and Ant-Man were placed on house arrest. (Can't exactly fight against the Mad Titan from the comfort of your couch, can you?) 

After Thanos (Josh Brolin) loaded up the Infinity Gauntlet with all six Infinity Stones, snapped his fingers, and wiped out half the universe's population in the final moments Infinity War, fans started to freak — and rightfully so. Through tear-filled eyes, viewers watched as heroes like Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), and many more faded into nothingness. Unfortunately, Hawkeye and Ant-Man's fates were left unclear since they weren't on the battlefield, and in turn, audiences were left to wonder if the heroes had died in the Decimation

In the time since Infinity War's release, we've learned that the two are — thank the Marvel gods — alive. The end-credits scene of Ant-Man and the Wasp confirmed Ant-Man's survival, and the Endgame trailer did the same for Hawkeye. But while Ant-Man seemed relatively well in the first look at Endgame, cracking jokes and waving his arms to try to get Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Captain America's (Chris Evans) attention so the trio can team up and potentially take down Thanos, it's a different story with Hawkeye. Suited up as Ronin, he visually looks sleek and un-mess-with-able, but it's evident that he's gone through something painful stuff — the kind of trauma that would push him to transform into the rogue assassin. 

Captain America stating that the heroes lost friends, lost family, and lost a part of themselves following the events of Infinity War suggests that perhaps Hawkeye's family disintegrated in the snap, and that's what drove him to take on the Ronin mantle once more. This is just an idea for now, but as Infinity War and Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo previously promised, there's a "really interesting story cooked up for Hawkeye."

Like we mentioned before, though Renner only just now broke his "silence" on Avengers: Endgame with these explicit mentions of the hero's impending comeback, it isn't as if the actor has kept entirely quiet about his involvement with the film. Throughout shooting, Renner was generous with behind-the-scenes teases, uploading several selfies taken on the Endgame set. 

In June, the actor teased on Instagram, "Got this feelin I need to SUIT up soon .... #comingINhot #missmyfriends #lovemyfamily #marvelous #hawkeye #nestunknown." He later shared a black-and-white selfie with the caption, "Day is done! It's Friday ... enjoy your weekend everyone," and various hashtags including one of bow and arrow emoji, another that asked #isanyonegonnashowup???, and a final that questioned #whoISstillALIVE??? Renner then turned things up a notch when he uploaded a photo of himself from the last day of filming on Endgame, captioning it, "On set preparing for last day! #hawkeye #stretching #marvel #backATit #[bow and arrow emoji] #missingmyA6."

While his reemergence was all but inevitable and while we'll have to wait until April 26, 2019 to know what really happened to Hawkeye, it's nice that Renner can now talk more openly — well, as openly as the ultra-secretive brass at Marvel will allow him to — about Avengers: Endgame