Robert Downey Jr. Wasn’t Always A Lock For Captain America: Civil War
Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War is widely regarded as a watershed moment for the MCU.
When the chips were down and the battle lines were drawn, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes found themselves divided between Team Cap and Team Iron Man – a battle which would ultimately result in the death of the Avengers, thereby fulfilling Baron Zemo’s prophecy.
Indeed, it wasn’t until the advent of Marvel’s Infinity War that the Avengers re-assembled – just in time for the arrival of Thanos and the Black Order, no less. But prior to Civil War‘s release, it seems lengthy negotiations meant Robert Downey Jr. wasn’t always locked in to reprise the role of Tony Stark, as Marvel boss Kevin Feige recalled during a Q&A session at the New York Film Academy (h/t CinemaBlend) this past weekend.
We didn’t have a deal with Downey. So it’s like, ‘Looking good with Downey! It’s Cap versus Iron Man.’ ‘I don’t know, it might not be Downey.’ Alright, it’s gonna be Cap versus who?’
History tells us that Downey Jr. and Marvel quickly reached an agreement to effectively extend the actor’s contract far into Phase 3, laying the groundwork for what would become Iron Man’s final appearance in Avengers: Endgame.
Circling back to Captain America: Civil War, though, and Kevin Feige went on to explain Spider-Man’s own involvement in the event movie, including how Marvel and Sony reached a deal over the beloved Web-Head.
Spider-Man in Civil War, you’ve heard the stories that is was always touch-and-go, were we going to be able to make the deal with Sony or not? That happened again recently. But that was happening the first time while we were writing and making Civil War. So Joe and Anthony Russo, and [screenwriters] Chris Markus and Stephen McFeely, and [producer] Nate Moore were on that movie developing it, and I’d be running in and out being like, ‘I think it’s gonna be Spidey!’ And then I’d go, ‘Forget it. It’s not gonna work’.
That deal was thrust into jeopardy following the release of Spider-Man: Far From Home, when Sony effectively “closed the door” on any future collaborations with Marvel Studios… that is, until the company relaxed its decision, and put pen to paper on a new deal which will see Tom Holland reprise his title role for a third Spider-Man solo flick due for release in 2021. And thank heavens for that.