Two weeks ago Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. star Clark Gregg shared an image that had Marvel movie fans excited at the idea that another member of The Avengers could make an appearance on the ABC television program. That image of a comic panel from Secret Avengers #10 depicted Agent Coulson - current director of S.H.I.E.L.D. in the Marvel Cinematic Universe - and Marvel's greatest archer, Hawkeye (played by Jeremy Renner in the movies), facing off against one another.
Given that this posting occurred several weeks after the issue hit comic stores and Marvel's digital services, it was a strange image to share. Was Clark Gregg simply messing with fans or was he teasing something epic that was actually going to happen in Agents of SHIELD? Could a two-time Oscar nominee and multi-franchise film star Jeremy Renner actually make a cameo appearance on Marvel's first live-action TV show this season?
Hawkeye's ex-lover in the comics, Mockingbird (real name: Bobbi Morse) is a regular this season in Agents of SHIELD and is played by another film star in Adrianne Palicki - a role which we think will end up with Palicki showing up in the movies eventually, so the idea makes a lot of sense. We wouldn't be surprised if Palicki and Renner's characters crossed paths eventually, potentially sparking a relationship.
This string of speculation became much more interesting today when Jeremy Renner happily posted on his WhoSay account that he was suiting up in his Hawkeye costume to shoot something he can't talk about. The wording makes it seem it's not simply pickup shots for The Avengers: Age of Ultron, but that it's something else. Given that Agent of SHIELD is currently back shooting for the regular season (Ming-Na Wen tweeted her call-time for shooting yesterday AM very early), our best guess is that Hawkeye will indeed show up in in the series. We spoke with Renner on the set of The Avengers: Age of Ultron last year about the series and we'll share that interview when Disney gives the greenlight closer to the film's release.
Tues morn. I find myself in costume again. I just can't tell you why. And it still fits! #marvel
The other possibility is that since Ant-Man has completed principal photography several weeks ago and is also releasing in theaters this summer, Renner could be shooting a secret scene or post-credits button for that film. The timing however, combined with Clark Gregg's tease the other week, lend more credence to the AoS appearance though.
Here's what we do know for sure. Marvel TV and the producers/showrunners of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. made it clear going into the back half of season one that they would make the program "more Marvel" and that means more than bringing in as many real characters from the comics as possible, but make it more relevant to the bigger picture story plans of the entire franchise.
Season one finished on a very high note, benefiting greatly from the story implications of last spring's Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and this season the show took on a different direction with new characters that have worked wonders. We now have a super-powered Inhuman on the team in Agent Skye and a potential future Avenger in Mockingbird to go along with fan-favorite Agent Coulson. We've already seen a few key film characters in Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) make multiple appearances and since this is a program about SHIELD, it makes sense for Marvel to make every effort to get their legendary agents Black Widow (Scarlet Johansson) and Hawkeye involved any way they can - assuming they can at all.
Hawkeye stands out the most since he's the only Avenger yet to appear in a film since The Avengers. Black Widow at least had leading roles parts in Iron Man 2 pre-Avengers and more recently, in Captain America 2. Hawkeye on the other hand, we don't know what he's been up to and since Agents of SHIELD will do its best to tie-in to The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Hawkeye and whatever he's doing could be explored in the show. Perhaps it even ties into this secret Mockingbird is keeping from Coulson.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns on March 3, 2015. Agent Carter starts its limited 8-episode run January 6, 2015.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron releases in theaters on May 1 2015, followed by Ant-Man on July 17 2015, Captain America: Civil War on May 6 2016, Doctor Strange on November 4 2016, Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May 5 2017, Thor: Ragnarok on July 28, 2017, Black Panther on November 3 2017, Avengers: Infinity War - Part 1 on May 4 2018, Captain Marvel on July 6 2018, Inhumans on November 2 2018 and Avengers: Infinity War - Part 2 on May 3 2019.
Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes for your Marvel movie and TV news!
Source: Jeremy Renner