Robert Downey Jr. Eager for Iron Man Comeback, Marvel Says No

Marvel Studios Upholds Integrity of Iconic 'Endgame' Finale.

by Nouman Rasool
Robert Downey Jr. Eager for Iron Man Comeback, Marvel Says No
© Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Robert Downey Jr. appears to be hinting that he wants to wear the suit again as Iron Man in connection with his iconic role of Tony Stark, aka Iron Man, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). That said, though the character of Stark was killed in "Avengers: Endgame" in a manner that should preclude his return, Downey remains pretty game to the idea.

The way through to any such return, though, is beset with all sorts of story and creative obstacles. During a panel discussion at the Sands: International Film Festival at the beginning of this month, the notion of Downey's return didn't seem to go down that well with "Endgame" directors Joe and Anthony Russo.

The pair, who have been attached to the MCU in huge ways over the last number of years, seem to have some grave reservations when it comes to resurrecting such a crucial point. "I don't know how they would do it," said Anthony Russo, signaling the complexity in bringing Stark back.

Joe Russo added, "We closed that book so it would be up to them to figure out how to reopen it."

Marvel's Firm Stance

All that fan excitement has now been placed in jeopardy as Marvel Studio President Kevin Feige has categorically denied any possibility of Tony Stark's glorious heroic death returning.

Asked about the subject by Vanity Fair, Feige emphasized the irrevocability of Stark's act of self-sacrifice, one of the pillars on which the emotional weight of "Endgame" is based: "We are going to keep that moment and not touch that moment again," Feige said, pointing to a need to keep the narrative integrity of the story arc that led to Stark's act of self-sacrifice in its final form.

Feige's approach would rather signal a cautious move when it comes to legacy characters, but he would rather like to explore the different terrains and characters in the wide MCU. It resonated with a broader strategy of evolving the franchise while respecting its established milestones.

To that end, it is the fans who cross their fingers for any kind of return, however small, of Stark's through flashbacks, alternative realities, or digital manipulation, where the statements of Russo and Feige send out clear messages: the intention is to move on without diminishing the impact of what was. With the MCU expanding even further to new heroes and new lines of story, the Tony Stark legacy will still live on.

Robert Downey Jr. Marvel