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The One Moment The Avengers Cast Knew The Movie Would Be Huge

For most MCU fans, it can be hard to remember when the franchise wasn't necessarily a sure thing — a time when each ambitious step the series took held as much risk as it did potential reward. After all, there were four years and as many films separating the debut of the universe with Iron Man in 2008 and its final film of the first phase, The Avengers, which dropped in 2012.

Of course, the MCU found plenty of success during those first four years, but there were no guarantees that Marvel and producer Kevin Feige could deliver on the ambitious vision they had outlined. The Avengers would be the true test of whether audiences would support the cohesive narrative that would allow the MCU to move into its second phase. While most of the films in between Iron Man and The Avengers did well, The Incredible Hulk showed that superhero films could still stumble, and before the MCU began, there were plenty of Marvel movies that bombed at the box office, too. The dire precedents had been set.

As a result, some of the stars involved in The Avengers were unsure about their involvement in the project. However, after months of shooting, the actors finally saw a cut of an iconic scene that gave them renewed hope for the film. Here is the moment that The Avengers cast knew that the movie would be huge.

The cast knew the film would be a success after they saw the 360 shot in The Avengers

In a recent interview with The Gentlewoman, Scarlett Johansson was frank about her concerns regarding The Avengers leading up to and during the shooting of the film. After director Joss Whedon described The Avengers to her, Johansson said her reaction was, "Even the thought of all of us together in our superhero costumes sounded like it was going to be a disaster. Not a disaster, but, like, What is this? What is this?"

Johansson said those doubts persisted throughout the process of filming the movie. It wasn't until after shooting had finished that she and the rest of the cast finally had a chance to see one of the most iconic scenes of the MCU – the first time all six heroes featured in The Avengers appear together. Johansson remembers, "I remember doing that 360 shot, and we're standing in the rubble of Grand Central or whatever, of this alien onslaught, and all of us are ready, like: Here we go, this is it. And then they showed us the playback, and I think that was the moment that all of us, finally, after six months of shooting, were, 'Oh, this is going to work. I think this is going to work.'"

Of course, Johansson and her castmates were right, as the film went on to more than double the box office receipts of any previous MCU film, earning $1.5 billion worldwide (via Box Office Mojo). Those numbers made The Avengers one of the highest-earning films ever at the time of its release, and paved the way for MCU to become the most successful movie franchise in box office history.