A few days ago, an article from Deadline on the recent Saturn Awards casually broke the news that Robert Downey Jr. will be seen once more in the role of Iron Man in next year’s Black Widow movie. Naturally, the claim quickly sent the internet into speculation mode, and it wasn’t long before the fans on social media started suggesting the return of every Marvel theorist’s favorite go-to: Skrulls.
Seeing how Tony Stark passed away in his last screen outing, Avengers: Endgame, it’s pretty understandable that folks would bring the shape-shifting alien race of Captain Marvel fame into the conversation. But as anyone who’s been paying close attention to the recent Black Widow news can tell you, Cate Shortland’s upcoming film needn’t resort to Skrull trickery in order to grant Downey’s Iron Man one final big screen appearance.
To elaborate, it’s well understood by now that Natasha Romanoff’s long-awaited solo flick will be set before the events of Endgame, taking us back to a time when both Nat and Tony are still very much alive. Specifically, it’s said that the story will unfold between the events of Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, filling in that blank space on the timeline where Black Widow is on the run.
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All things considered, the easiest way to integrate Iron Man into the story would surely be through the movie’s Civil War connection, and if recent reports are anything to go by, then that’s exactly what Marvel Studios has in mind.
Regardless, we’ll find out if Downey really did make the cut when Black Widow hits theaters on May 1st, 2020. As for the Skrulls, they may not be showing up in next year’s release, but you can bet that we haven’t seen the last of them. After all, Marvel has to find some way of following through on their Spider-Man: Far From Home tease.