Those that chose not to sit through the end credits of Avengers: Infinity War may have been wondering why Nicky Fury, the former director of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the man responsible for forming the Avengers in the first place, doesn’t appear in the movie at all. However, those that did stick around got to see Fury sending an old-school pager message to an unknown recipient before he was dusted, which we all know now turned out to be Carol Danvers, both teasing Captain Marvel and confirming she would play a part in Avengers: Endgame.
With Endgame now available on home video, some of the key creatives involved have been doing spoiler-heavy interviews and co-writer Stephen McFeely has revealed that there was originally a different plan for Nick Fury’s Infinity War cameo, but it hardly sounds as though the eye-patch wearing government agent was ever going to play a massive part in the conclusion of the Infinity Saga.
“I think at one point we thought we’d shoot it somewhere like a train station. So we did a version of that where Nick Fury was between trains. I don’t even remember where the idea came from. We were handed a job to write two movies out of four, and we knew we could kindly request certain things of those two movies in between Infinity War and Endgame that would help lay out the chessboard for our movies. There are bigger puzzles than even just two.”
As for whether there was any intention of having Fury show up to fight side-by-side with the Avengers in Endgame’s climactic battle before his brief cameo at Tony Stark’s funeral, McFeely was pretty emphatic in his response, saying:
“No. God, I mean, how much did you see Winter Soldier in that battle? That’s the thing – we sort of got to a point where you’re just technically people shooting, you know? So i don’t know if we ever had Nick Fury in it.”
Leaving an actor like Samuel L. Jackson almost entirely out of two of the biggest movies of all-time seems like a risky business strategy, especially with Captain Marvel marking the last movie on his nine-picture contract with Marvel Studios, but Kevin Feige reassured us at the time that the 70 year-old that Nick Fury would be an integral part of the studio’s 2019 output.
“Sam was very funny in this roundtable we did talking about how he’d disappeared for a while. He shows up in Avengers: Age of Ultron, and then he’s not in Captain America: Civil War and hadn’t been in a number of movies for a while. I remember meeting with him two years ago and saying, ‘I know it’s been a while, Sam. Here is our plan. 2019 is going to be the year of Fury’. And we walked him through young, two-eyed Fury in Captain Marvel, the one poignant shot of him in Endgame and seeing him in Spider-Man: Far From Home. And it’s fun now to see the year of Fury complete.”
Nick Fury may not have had much to contribute to either Avengers: Infinity War or Avengers: Endgame, but Samuel L. Jackson is likely more than happy that his character was one of the biggest supporting players in both Captain Marvel and Far From Home, which heavily featured Fury and earned over a billion dollars apiece at the box office.