Just what do we know about next year's Avengers 4? Marvel is trying to keep the details under wraps; the Russo brothers in particular have been enjoying dropping as many cryptic hints as possible, even trying to persuade fans that the deaths at the end of Avengers: Infinity War will stick.
In spite of Marvel's secrecy, though, there have been a number of key Avengers 4 leaks. These began during production of the film, with set photos offering strong hints as to the film's plot. Since then, there's been a stampede of potential reveals. It's unclear which "leaks" are actually real, but putting everything together certainly presents a very interesting picture.
So what do we actually know about Avengers 4, what do the leaked details suggest, and how much of this is actually real? In this post, we're going to collect every single major leak, and explore just how it fits into the little we know for certain. We'll keep this up-to-date over the course of the next year; no doubt there'll be more major leaks before Avengers 4's release in 2019.
- This Page: Avengers 4 Art & Set Photos
- Page 2: Plot Leaks and Merchandise Hint at the Story
- Page 3: Merchandise Leaks, Possible Titles, and a Trailer Description
Last updated: October 19, 2018
Leaked Art from Avengers 4
Let's start with a stunning piece of artwork. In early June 2018, leaked art provided a glimpse of the Avengers 4 team. The art was displayed at CineEurope, confirming it as officially from Marvel. This art clearly shows that the remaining heroes will unite against Thanos, but that there will be some pretty dramatic changes along the way.
- As most have expected, the art shows Captain Marvel alongside the Avengers. Mysteriously absent, though, is Wasp - leading some to theorize that Hope will have been killed when Thanos snapped his fingers.
- War Machine has a major upgrade.
- Steve Rogers and Black Widow clearly aren't on the run anymore, with Black Widow returning to her trademark red hair, while Steve Rogers is wearing a (scaled) Captain America outfit.
- As rumored, Hawkeye's costume looks quite dark, supporting the popular theory that he'll suit up as Ronin.
- Finally, note that the Hulk is very different. The Hulk's facial structure is more like Mark Ruffalo's than ever before, and he's actually wearing a costume. This was confirmed at CineEurope, where footage from Avengers 4 was shown that apparently revealed the Hulk in armor.
Powerful New Weapons
Meanwhile, leaked concept art and set photos have suggested that the Avengers will be getting something of a power-up in order to win their inevitable rematch against Thanos. One shows what seems to be a proton cannon, a weapon used by Iron Man in Capcom's 1995 arcade game, Marvel Super Heroes. The weapon was lying in the background at the Avengers headquarters in Avengers: Infinity War, and at first seemed to be little more than a cool Easter egg. But it featured in a cryptic social media post from Joe and Anthony Russo, and in October the leaked set photo gave a closer look at it. It's as yet unclear how important a weapon the proton cannon will be in Avengers 4.
Equally interesting is a piece of concept art that shows a distinctive ax-like weapon. It's almost identical to a Dwarven ax wielded by Captain Marvel in the Fear Itself event. That story saw Iron Man pick up an arsenal of Asgardian weapons, with each of the Avengers transformed by their own individual tool. This fits rumors that Eitri will be an important figure in Avengers 4; the heroes may well head to him to get some more weapons forged on Nidavellir.
But Thanos may not be unarmed in Avengers 4 himself. The snap took a physical toll on the Mad Titan. Another piece of concept art leaked on Reddit, showing Thanos donning the armor we briefly saw in Avengers: Infinity War and carrying a sword. The image has since been removed, but it suggests Thanos won't go down without a fight.
Return To The Battle of New York
A wide range of set photos has made it clear Avengers 4 will revisit the Battle of New York, which took place in 2012's The Avengers. The first indication came late last year, when one set photo showed Tony Stark wearing the same Black Sabbath shirt he sported for most of The Avengers. More set photos showed Thor and Loki in their 2012 attire (complete with flowing golden locks for Thor). The last batch of set photos showed Cap in his Avengers uniform, standing alongside an older Tony Stark and Ant-Man. These images strongly suggest either the use of B.A.R.F. technology (the virtual-reality tech Stark innovated in Captain America: Civil War) or time travel.
Other set photos and casting calls suggested there would be flashbacks to different times, as well. Evangeline Lilly dropped a set photo showing her hair in a bob; while Hope wore her hair in that style in Ant-Man, she's ditched it by the time of Ant-Man and the Wasp. Chris Evans was snapped filming a scene set in the past, as he walked down a street filled with classic cars. Marvel casting calls included an appeal for actors to play an office scene set in the 1960s.
Page 2 of 3: Alleged Avengers 4 Plot Leaks
Avengers 4 Could Begin With A Time Jump
There have been frequent rumors on social media that Avengers 4 will launch with a five-year time jump. They've never been officially confirmed, but they do fit a little with the facts: set photos have shown Robert Downey Jr. playing an older Tony Stark, with gray in his hair; Emma Fuhrmann has been cast as an older Cassie Lang; a throwaway comment from Gwyneth Paltrow seemed to imply that, in Avengers 4, Tony and Pepper would have a child. All this would fit well with the idea of a time jump
One popular theory runs that Scott Lang will escape from the Quantum Realm through one of the mysterious "time vortexes," and will emerge five years in the future. Shaken when he emerges in a world broken by the snap, he rushes to see his daughter, and realizes that five years have passed. That's when he goes to Tony Stark - and, so the theory goes, Stark realizes that time travel is possible.
Return to Wakanda
There have been rumors that the Avengers 4 reshoots added a lot of scenes featuring Black Panther's home nation, Wakanda. That would make sense; at the time Marvel filmed Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4, they had no idea how successful Black Panther would be. Those rumors seem to have been confirmed by casting calls and even the backdrop of an interview with Robert Downey Jr.; he was on the set of the Wakandan Design Lab.
A Major Potential Avengers 4 Leak on 4chan
In November 2017, an anonymous user posted on 4chan, revealing what they claimed was a major leak of both Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4. The bulk of their predictions for Avengers: Infinity War proved to be correct, with details including the return of the Red Skull and Thanos's sacrifice of Gamora in order to acquire the Soul Stone. Given the accuracy of their Infinity War predictions, there's a high chance they're mostly right about Avengers 4 as well.
The original 4chan thread was swiftly deleted, but was preserved on Reddit. According to this unknown source, Avengers 4 is indeed a time travel film, with Iron Man deciding to undo Thanos's "snap." The reassembled Avengers team up with Ant-Man in order to use the Quantum Realm to travel through time, retrieving Infinity Stones from different time-periods for use in Iron Man's own Infinity Gauntlet. Along the way, the Avengers created a number of different timelines (probably not permanent ones) - including one in which they'd retrieved the Power Stone, and the Guardians of the Galaxy never came together. Thanos learns about the Avengers' plans, and is hellbent on stopping them.
According to the leak, only two of the original Avengers survive the movie, with Captain America giving his life in battle against Thanos. Due to changes in the timeline, Mjolnir has been restored, and Cap actually wields the enchanted hammer against the Mad Titan before being killed. At one point, Hawkeye must protect the unfinished Stark Gauntlet, and plays an "instrumental" role in Thanos's defeat. The Hulk and Banner identities, meanwhile, merge into the "Professor Hulk" persona - and Hulk is the one who ultimately wields the Gauntlet against Thanos, losing an arm in the process.
This particular leak is highly believable, and not only because the source's Avengers: Infinity War predictions were so accurate. The first key point is that this potential leak didn't contain a character arc for a hero who disappeared as a result of the "snap." Looking at the actual details from the leak, Infinity War most definitely set up the "Professor Hulk" arc. What's more, Sebastian Stan has teased one particular scene "where everybody was there." This could easily be the scene where Thor and Captain Marvel lead their army of heroes against the Mad Titan.
There is also, devoid of plot relevance, a reference to a CGI-heavy scene featuring Doctor Strange and a mo-cap actor in Avengers 4. This may have been a scene in Infinity War given how Benedict Cumberbatch shot most of his scenes alone on a green screen due to scheduling conflicts, but if not then it teases greater cosmic action and, of course, Doctor Strange's return from the dead.
At the same time, though, it's important to note that not everything this 4chan user said about Avengers: Infinity War was right - and the same is likely true for Avengers 4. One amusing (apparent) error was their reference to a CGI-heavy scene featuring Doctor Strange and a mo-cap actor in Avengers 4; that actually seems to be the torture scene in Infinity War, with Strange a prisoner of Ebony Maw. It does seem as though this source had access to early outlines, but of course, plans do change.
Avengers 4 Definitely Looks To Involve Time Travel
The set photos, combined with the 4chan leak, have led most viewers to assume Avengers 4 is some sort of time travel film - with the heroes using the Quantum Realm to travel through time. Described in Ant-Man as "a reality where all concepts of time and space become irrelevant," the Quantum Realm is known to feature in both Ant-Man & the Wasp and Captain Marvel. That would establish a clear narrative connection between these two movies and Avengers 4, making sense of the release order; it would also make Ant-Man a key player in Avengers 4.
Doctor Strange introduced the concept of the Multiverse, and Avengers: Infinity War teased that even more heavily when Strange used the Time Stone to explore millions of possible future timelines. It looks as though the heroes' attempt to rewrite history and avert the "snap" will create whole new timelines, even giving rise to different versions of classic MCU heroes. This is an idea the comics have used many times, from the classic X-Men: Days of Future Past to 2013's Age of Ultron event. It would also potentially allow for the much-rumored return of Aaron Taylor-Johnson's Quicksilver. Interestingly enough, one of the latest rumors suggested that John Slattery - best known for playing Howard Stark - filmed a scene as well.
One Possible Leak Disagrees
A more recent possible leak on Reddit has suggested a different approach. An unidentified poster, who claimed to be involved with the Avengers 4 reshoots, insisted that there's no time travel. Instead, he suggested that Scott Lang steals the Reality Stone; somehow Tony Stark combines the Reality Stone with his B.A.R.F. technology in an attempt to undo the snap. There is a little evidence for this; set photos from Avengers 4 showed boxes on-set carrying labels for "B.A.R.F.." Commenting on these photos, Avengers 4 co-director Joe Russo admitted they may be important. "Certainly, there is a five-minute sequence in Civil War around a piece of technology that was laid in for a very specific reason," he observed. "If you go back and look at that film, you may get a hint as to the direction."
Avengers 4 Merchandise Confirms The Quantum Realm Theory?
In October 2018, leaked art from Avengers 4 merchandise suggested that the Avengers will don some fascinating new outfits. It showed Thor and Rocket Raccoon wearing distinctive white costumes, with an inset showing Captain America in a similar uniform. These are clearly environmental suits of some kind, and they're very much reminiscent of concept art of Quantum Realm costumes from Ant-Man & the Wasp. It's generally believed these will be worn by the Avengers in order to survive in that harsh, hostile environment.
The Title of Avengers 4
What is the title of Avengers 4? Kevin Feige has suggested it's some sort of spoiler, and co-director Anthony Russo recently revealed that Marvel chose the film's name fairly early on during production. "It speaks to the heart of the story," he explained, in what's possibly the biggest hint to date. There are three rumored titles:
- Avengers: Endgame, a popular fan theory that is associated with the Russos' cryptic social media post;
- Avengers: Annihilation, a recent contender that is linked to a major comic book event;
- The Last Avenger, a title "revealed" by Mark Ruffalo on Jimmy Fallon's show - but it may just be a joke.
It's important to note that this particular spoiler may not be quite so major as everyone thinks. Feige has suggested the decision not to reveal the title has "sort of backfired." He explained that Marvel held the title back in order to ensure everyone was focused on Avengers: Infinity War, but instead the mystery title became the center of attention. Clearly frustrated with all the speculation, Feige has cautioned that Marvel has "no chance to living up to any expectations of what it's gonna be."
A Possible Avengers 4 Trailer Leak
In mid-October 2017, a possible Avengers 4 trailer leak left fans thrilled. It was originally posted on Reddit, but was swiftly deleted. The detailed rundown starts with a shot of the damaged Infinity Gauntlet, followed by a reunion between Tony and Steve which effectively sets things into motion. Several ongoing rumors about the film would seem to be confirmed via the description, including the debut of Clint Barton as Ronin, and the Battle of New York. The Quantum Realm, a Kree ship, and even the planet Vormir also crop up.
Unfortunately, the fact that this corresponds with so many of the rumors makes it particularly questionable; it doesn't contain much (if any) new information at all. It could easily have been concocted by anyone who'd been keeping up with the rumors - or, indeed, had just read this article. So it's best taken with a serious pinch of salt.