Spoiler Alert: There are major spoilers for the Marvel Cinematic Universe in this post.
Following the epic events in the box office-dominating Avengers: Endgame, it appeared that Robert Downey Jr. was done playing Tony Stark/Iron Man in any future Marvel films. But that appears to be premature, as Downey is expected to reprise his role as the hero one more time in the upcoming Black Widow solo film, according to Deadline.
In a recap of the Saturn Awards, after mentioning that Downey won the award for Best Actor for his performance in Avengers: Endgame, Deadline wrote that “Downey will be seen in the role of Stark one more time, however, in the Marvel prequel Black Widow in May 2020.” Marvel has yet to confirm the news, and may not for a while to build up more excitement for the film.
While the appearance in the film would likely be small one since the movie is centered on Scarlett Johansson’s Nastasha Romanoff/Black Widow, should Downey Jr. appear, it would probably be in a part of the film that takes place during or right near the events of Captain America: Civil War. Actor David Harbour, who plays Red Guardian in Black Widow, confirmed in July at Comic-Con that his character and Nastasha have a relationship, and confirmed the time period for parts of the film.
“They’ve known each other for a while and there’s a complex history there,” Harbour said to IGN.com. “This movie happens right after Captain America: Civil War, and so those events do factor in.”
There also have been some reports on the Internet and social media that Downey’s appearance might not be something new—it might simply be a deleted scene from Captain America: Civil War that has not been released before. Either way, it appears that Downey will have one more appearance as the hero.
A new report suggests Robert Downey Jr. will appear in the ‘Black Widow’ movie, though it could be through a previously unreleased ‘Civil War’ deleted scene
— Fandom (@getFANDOM) September 16, 2019
Having a scene between Downey and Johansson would also make sense within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as Black Widow first appeared in Iron Man 2, making it a somewhat sentimental connection.
Part of it also is likely a move by Marvel to keep some of the original Avengers involved in the movies past Avengers: Endgame, since Black Widow died in that movie (the Black Widow film takes place before those events), Chris Hemsworth won’t be back for Thor 4 until 2021, and Chris Evans’ Captain America is likely finished with the films as well.
Black Widow will be released on May 1, 2020.