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MCU Revelations That Came From Outside The Movies

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It has been long rumored (jokingly... we think) that Marvel Studios keeps a team of "snipers" on the payroll to ensure that nobody leaks any of their precious plot details prior to a film's release. Somewhere along the line, these "marksmen" must've lost their touch, as plot leaks and spoilers in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have become more and more prevalent over the past decade. Perhaps the guys responsible for keeping such a tight-lid on things back in the production studio's early years got old and retired, or, more likely, the MCU has simply become too large to keep everything under wraps.

While some of the actors and actresses who portray Marvel's iconic heroes and heroines do a great job keeping their mouths shut, others (Tom Holland... cough cough) are a tad more unreliable. Other times, it's actually the advertising and promotional merchandise for a film that's responsible for letting the cat (or flerkin) out of the bag. Whether it's spoiling a big twist, accidentally revealing a major plot point, or even leaking crucial details about the MCU's larger master plan, here are some MCU revelations that came from outside the movies. Watch out for spoilers... and just a heads up: you're about to see Samuel L. Jackson's name a lot.

"Nobody told me not to say anything"

Unless you've been living under a rock for the past year, you almost certainly know by now that in the waning minutes of 2018's Avengers: Infinity War, Thanos collects all six Infinity Stones and snaps his fingers, effectively causing 50% of all life in the universe to vanish into dust. The list of the "dusted" includes, among countless others, every member of the Guardians of the Galaxy except for Rocket Raccoon and Nebula.

Although many fans assume that the effects of the Mad Titan's fateful snap will be impermanent due to confirmed upcoming sequels like Spider-Man: Far From Home, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and Black Panther 2, you never truly know what Kevin Feige has up his sleeve.

However, when Dave Bautista appeared on Good Morning Britain, he made comments about the future of his character, Drax the Destroyer, that put fans' minds at ease. "We definitely see more Guardians in the upcoming Avengers, which we've already shot... I've shot scenes for it, so I must come back somehow. It's comforting but at the same time I felt a sense of guilt because I don't know if I was supposed to say anything, and nobody told me not to say anything." It sounds like the dusted heroes will definitely be resurrected in Avengers: Endgame; the only question is how.

Everybody dies!

You never want to be the guy who spoils the year's biggest blockbuster movie, even if you're one of the actors starring in it! Mark Ruffalo, the man who plays Bruce Banner/The Hulk, learned that the hard way. In July of 2017, nearly a year before the highly-anticipated Infinity War hit theaters, he and co-star Don Cheadle appeared on Good Morning America to discuss what makes Infinity War different from the other Marvel flicks. You can tell that Cheadle nearly falls out of his seat when Ruffalo spills, "In this next one, ha — everybody dies!" He catches himself before he states that half of the heroes die, and does his best to play it off.

Fortunately, at the time, most fans figured that Ruffalo was simply trying to build anticipation by throwing the audience off, so the comments were widely disregarded. It wasn't until the film hit theaters in late April of 2018 that people could look back and realize that Ruffalo's accidental divulgence was true. Don't let the Hulk get spoilery — you wouldn't like him when he's spoilery!

Caught in a web of spoilers

Tom Holland, the young actor who plays Peter Parker, a.k.a. Spider-Man, is one of the weakest links in the MCU cast when it comes to accidentally revealing details about upcoming movies. In addition to inadvertently announcing the title to his upcoming solo sequel, Spider-Man: Far From Home, Holland has also leaked a slew of spoilers to the press, including that — perhaps most interestingly — his Spider-Man run will be a trilogy.

In an interview with AlloCiné from June of 2017, Holland discussed the full arc of his character. "There is still a lot of room for Peter Parker and Spider-Man, especially, to grow in the next two movies... It's going to be an exciting couple of movies." It's important to note that this interview took place in 2017, a year before Infinity War, a film in which he seemingly died in, was even released. At the time, nothing about upcoming movies was confirmed past Infinity War, so the fact that Holland announced not one, but two more solo movies was a major leak. When asked to clarify, he didn't even try to play it off. "There will be a Spider-Man 2 and 3... Yeah, well now you know. Sorry, Marvel. Whoops!" Whoops indeed.

Iron Baby?

Gwyneth Paltrow portrays Pepper Potts, Tony Stark's most-trusted confidant (and now fiance) in the MCU. She dropped a potentially huge spoiler back in May of 2018, a mere few weeks after Avengers: Infinity War hit theaters and shocked audiences worldwide. PopBuzz discovered that, in an interview with the official Infinity War magazine, Paltrow made some pretty telling comments about the future of Pepper and Tony's relationship. "Pepper and Tony have had a really long journey together. She obviously starts as his dutiful assistant, and then the relationship evolves, and now this decade later they're married, and they have a child."

This was a particularly head-scratching revelation because, after the events of Infinity War, so much is still up in the air. No one knows for sure if Pepper survived the snap, and Tony is still light-years away from Earth, abandoned in space with Nebula. Obviously, Paltrow's comments lead fans to believe that Stark and Potts will reunite in the near future, and it sounds like they will be soon-to-be parents! Would that make this kid the heir to the Iron Throne?

An unexpected return

In Infinity War, fans were overcome with awe when they were treated to a long-lost familiar face on Vormir. After roughly seven years, the Red Skull made his second appearance in the MCU, this time as the keeper of the Soul Stone. The character was presumably killed in Captain America: The First Avenger when direct contact with the Tesseract seemingly imploded him during his final fight with Cap. However, some fans never bought the fact that he was gone for good, suggesting that perhaps he was simply teleported to a different planet.

While the brief reappearance was completely unexpected for most, the MCU's resident blabbermouth, Samuel L. Jackson, actually alluded to this twist in March of 2017, roughly a year before Infinity War was released. Express reports that when speaking on HOT 97, Jackson all but confirmed that the Red Skull is still alive and well in the MCU. "You didn't see me in Civil War. I'm still out there trying to figure out what the Skull is going to..." he said, before trailing off as if realizing he'd said to much. Looks like Jackson let the Skull out of the bag!

Sly not so sly

The rampant success of 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy, which grossed nearly $775 million worldwide, all but guaranteed that Peter Quill's ragtag team of "space Avengers" would get a sequel. While most of the details about the franchise's second installment, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, were kept under wraps, a solid bit of journalism back in 2016 was able to uncover one of the film's secret castings. 

Roughly one year before the sequel's theatrical release, The New York Daily News snapped photos of none other than Sylvester Stallone leaving the same Atlanta hotel that housed the cast of Guardians during filming at Georgia's Pinewood Studio. Stallone, holding a script in his hand, got into the same car that was typically seen escorting Chris Pratt to and from the studio. A few days later, Heroic Hollywood confirmed that Stallone was in fact in the film, playing one of Yondu's fellow Ravagers (he ended up portraying Stakar Ogord, a.k.a. Starhawk).

A giant spoiler

In Captain America: Civil War, Iron Man and Captain America go toe-to-toe, each assembling their own mini-squad to assist them in the fight. It all comes to fruition in an evacuated airport terminal, where Team Cap and Team Stark finally square off in arguably one of the greatest fight sequences in the MCU. In the scene's climax, Paul Rudd's Ant Man shocks audiences by going from super small to super tall, becoming Giant Man (as his character often does in the comics).

While this fantastic twist was euphoric for fans loyal to the source material, it actually shouldn't have been all that surprising thanks to the film's promotional merchandise. Prior to the film's release, LEGO showcased a playset based on the airport fight scene at a toy fair. In the display, you can clearly see that Ant Man is noticeably larger than all of the other figures, obviously revealing that he will become Giant Man at some point. Talk about a spoiler of gigantic proportions!

Fury & Flerken

Only the most devout Marvel fans hear the word "flerken" and don't immediately think that it's an expression Liz Lemon frantically uses in 30 Rock. According to The Wrap, a flerken is an "extremely dangerous alien animal with human-level intellect that just happens to look indistinguishable from Earth cats." When it was announced that Carol Danvers' cat, Goose, would play a role in Captain Marvel, fans everywhere wondered if they would stick to the source material or not.

However, they didn't have to wait until the movie premiered to get their answer. Back in February, roughly a month before Captain Marvel hit theaters, Nerdist did a piece on Goose the cat. When they asked Samuel L. Jackson, who plays a younger version of Nick Fury in the film, what he would title a buddy-cop movie featuring his character and Goose, his answer spilled the beans. "Somebody called it 'Fury & Flerken.' Yeah, alright. 'Flerken Fury.'" A week earlier, the twitter page @CaptMarvelNews had released a picture of a Goose toy that appeared to be a flerken, but it was Jackson's confirmation that really sealed the deal.

Done & Dusted

After Thanos' lethal snap in Infinity War, fans everywhere wondered which off-screen heroes survived the rapture-like event. Who, if any, would survive to fight another day in Endgame? Most were able to determine that the next film in line, Ant-Man and the Wasp, would directly tie in to the overall story in some way, but they didn't know how.

Although now it is known that only Scott Lang's Ant-Man survived (albeit abandoned in the Quantum Realm), eagle-eyed Marvel loyalists possibly had an insider tip going in, especially those who follow the MCU's stars on social media. Back in December of 2017, before Infinity War made everyone aware of "the Snap," Evangeline Lilly (who plays Hope van Dyne, a.k.a. the Wasp) posted a picture on Twitter that many fans assumed marked her final day on the set of Ant Man and the Wasp, which was slated for release in the following year. However, looking back, the caption she used was somewhat ominous: "Another day done and dusted." It can now be assumed that she was referring to the fact that her character doesn't survive the Snap. You have to admire Lilly's subtle spoiler skills!

Who's in the suit?

In Shane Black's Iron Man 3, fans get to see a lot of Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark without his high-tech armor, confirming the fact that even without his fancy suit, he is still a hero. In one scene in particular, Stark's Malibu mansion is attacked by helicopters, firing endless bullets and missiles. Instead of donning armor for himself, he uses one suit's new tech to make it attach to Pepper Potts, thus ensuring her safety. It was a nod to the fact that in the comics, Pepper has also taken up the iron armor, going by the name Rescue.

This scene would've been a lot more surprising had LEGO not ruined it before the film hit theaters. In the "Iron Man 3 Malibu Mansion Attack" play set, you can see a figure that clearly resembles Tony Stark sans armor, and also a figure in the trademark Iron Man suit. The figure in the suit is obviously Pepper, who, in the film, saves both Tony and Maya Hansen. This is just another example of a movie's promotional merchandise leaking crucial plot details. 

A car with optional spoiler

Iron Man and Audi has become synonymous. Tony Stark's flashy rides have made appearances in most of the films he is featured in, so it's somewhat poetic that the car manufacturer he loves so much may have spoiled who will save him from outer space in Avengers: Endgame. During its presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Audi announced that it had partnered with Marvel to create "Marvel's Avengers: Rocket's Rescue Run," a VR experience that lets fans "venture through space from the backseat of Audi's e-tron Vision Gran Turismo."

Although the debate of who will rescue Tony Stark has been a hot one as of late (with Pepper Potts, Nebula, Captain Marvel, and more as potential saviors), Rocket Raccoon seemingly now has the best odds. Although fans will have to wait until Endgame hits theaters in April to know for sure, Audi may have prematurely spoiled the heroics of the galaxy's favorite trash panda.