After more than a decade in the MCU, Robert Downey Jr. couldn’t be blamed if he felt like hanging up the Iron Man suit, nor could we hold much against Marvel Studios if they felt like the time had come to make room for some fresh faces in the saga. It therefore only figures that the fanbase has been predicting all year that Tony Stark’s journey is nearing its end, and the upcoming Avengers: Endgame seems like the perfect opportunity to give the star of 2008’s Iron Man the emotional send-off he deserves.
That being said, since Marvel Studios has yet to offer any official confirmation on the matter, there’s still some room for doubt that the Avengers: Infinity War sequel will serve as the character’s swan song, but going by a new report from Robert Downey Jr. UK, the chances of Stark still having a place in the MCU’s Phase 4 have never looked slimmer.
The popular Twitter account dedicated to all things Downey sent fans into a state of panic and despair with the following announcement:
“BREAKING NEWS: @RobertDowneyJr’s contract ends with #AvengersEndgame”
Based on the online response, Marvel enthusiasts aren’t too pleased with the news, but given all we’ve heard previously, the announcement shouldn’t come as much of a shock, with many fans practically taking it as a given already that Downey will soon be out the game. And while some folks are still holding onto the hope that the actor’s contract might be renewed, it’s certainly looking like the two most probable fates for Iron Man next year are a quiet retirement or a heroic self-sacrifice.
Regardless, we’ll find out who’s still around for the MCU’s next phase when Avengers: Endgame hits theaters on April 26th, 2019.