Avengers: Infinity War has finally hit the big screen, and fans everywhere are either thrilled or in mourning. It's a total blast to watch, but it can also be a bit of a downer. People get hurt, relationships are tested, and the good guys suffer a massive number of casualties. The Marvel Cinematic Universe now has significantly less heroes to work with.
The ending of Infinity War has shocked the world, and it leaves fans wondering what will happen to their favorite characters next — if their favorite characters are still alive, that is. Don't worry though, we've got you covered. Avengers 4 is only a year away and we've gathered up a cast list that will definitely surprise you. For this list, we're going to take a look at characters confirmed for Avengers 4, and even some wild casting rumors that will blow fans away if true.
Keep in mind that these rumors are subject to change — Marvel Studios isn't above misleading to keep its secrets under wraps. Also, spoiler warning —we're not going to cover characters who survive Infinity War, as they're almost certainly going to return. Besides, we all know that superheroes never stay gone for long.
The entire cast is expected to return in some form along with all new characters, but until it's all official, we'll just have to take them on their word.
Here are 11 Characters Confirmed To Appear In Avengers 4 (and 10 Rumored).
21 CONFIRMED — Captain Marvel
If the end-credits scene of Infinity War confused you, then you might want to brush up on Captain Marvel.
Carol Danvers is an Air Force pilot who stumbles onto an interstellar war between the Kree (seen in Guardians of the Galaxy) and the Skrulls, a race of shape-shifting aliens. She eventually meets the Kree hero Mar-Vell, and receives his powers of flight, super strength, and energy projection through a freak accident. Think about it: she has the power-level of Superman but goes on the galaxy-trotting adventures of Green Lantern. She's an extremely powerful superhero, and the MCU still hasn't seen anything like her.
Starring Brie Larson, the movie will take place in the 1990s as Earth is caught in the middle of the Kree/Skrull War. Not only will it be Marvel's first female-led film in the MCU, but it'll feature younger versions of characters like Nick Fury, Ronan the Accuser, and Clark Gregg's fan-favorite S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, Phil Coulson. Captain Marvel is currently filming and it drops on March 8, 2019. Of course, she'll be showing up in Avengers 4.
It makes you wonder, though: if all Nick Fury had to do was page her space beeper, then why hasn't he called her before? She's probably on an important space mission but this isn't the first time Earth has needed help. Hopefully she gets back soon — the Avengers need all the help they can get.
20 RUMORED — Doctor Strange
His solo film wasn't a smash hit compared to the rest of the Avengers newcomers, but Doctor Strange gets quite the spotlight in Infinity War. This probably came as a surprise, despite his possession of the Time Gem, as he even shines in action sequences with new powers that weren't in his 2016 debut. He can make clones of himself, turn things into butterflies, and even sees into the future. Doctor Strange likely gained some new fans in the process, but hopefully they didn't get too attached.
Shockingly, Benedict Cumberbatch hasn't been confirmed for Avengers 4.
A sequel to Doctor Strange hasn't been greenlit either, despite a planned follow-up. What's worse? Doctor Strange doesn't leave Infinity War alive.
This doesn't bode well for the Sorcerer Supreme — though it's possible that Marvel is gauging audience reactions to the character before pulling the trigger on another solo endeavor. He plays a major role in the fight against Thanos, and his final scene implies that the shocker ending is all part of his scheme to save the universe.
This has sparked theories on his return and the plot of Avengers 4, but that remains speculation. In any case, Doctor Strange has the potential to be a trademark Marvel franchise with its unique brand of psychedelia. If he somehow doesn't return next year, then hopefully this isn't the last of him.
19 CONFIRMED — Spider-Man
Tom Holland's Spider-Man gets a lot of screen-time in Infinity War. Not only does he share the screen with Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark yet again, but he gets to meet Doctor Strange, the Guardians, and Thanos himself.
Unfortunately, he meets an emotional end after Thanos snaps his fingers. After crying into Tony's arms, he turns into dust and fades away. It might be one of the saddest moments in the entire film.
There is no way Spider-Man is gone for good.
Tom Holland has been instructed to keep quiet about all future Marvel affairs, but his return was confirmed by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. Feige also mentioned his subsequent appearance in 2019's sequel to Spider- Man: Homecoming, which headlines the next phase of Marvel films.
On top of his upcoming sequel, Infinity War ends in the middle of several Spidey-related story arcs.
Before his passing, Tony Stark finally labels him an official Avenger, hinting at plenty adventures to come.
Even Homecoming has loose ends to tie up, like the end-credits scene that suggests Michael Keaton's Vulture may return alongside the likes of the Scorpion to get revenge on the friendly neighborhood web-slinger.
18 RUMORED — Gamora
Not only was Gamora's final scene heart-wrenching, but it came as a genuine surprise. Few people expected her to be the emotional anchor of Infinity War, especially in the presence of so many other, more popular characters.
Her sacrifice wasn't just hard to watch because it was sad, either. It was a revealing moment for Thanos, as it showed audiences that the monster actually loves his daughter, in his own way. It makes him look strangely sympathetic, though Gamora never deserved such a grim end. Fortunately, her story isn't over.
While her name hasn't been officially announced by Marvel, Zoe Saldana herself says that she will be coming back for Avengers 4.
She implied that she would be returning with her fellow Guardians as well, but she wasn't very explicit. Thanos' scene inside the Soul Stone implies that Gamora is not fully dead but rather "trapped" within the stone itself, making her resurrection very likely.
She's yet to tie up loose ends with her father and fully reconcile with her sister Nebula. If neither of those things happen in Avengers 4, then expect those payoffs in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 coming sometime in 2020. Besides, the Guardians won't survive without her!
17 CONFIRMED — Black Panther
Did anybody actually think Black Panther would stay dead after Infinity War? There is no way that Marvel would abandon this new juggernaut of a franchise so soon after its explosive debut back in February.
T'Challa may have suffered Thanos' finger-snap, but this king's reign is hardly over.
Back in October, Chadwick Boseman was spotted on the set of Avengers 4 alongside his sister Shuri, played by Letitia Wright. Neither character was featured too heavily in Infinity War, and it was never even revealed if Shuri had survived the ending. However, all signs point to their return in 2019 as well as in the inevitable multi-film franchise that Black Panther is destined to become. Wakanda forever!
Strangely though, the reported set photos have Boseman and Wright dressed in their outfits from the end of Black Panther, during the scene where T'Challa opens the Wakandan outreach facility in Oakland. This is either a massive coincidence or further evidence of the now viral time travel theory.
These actors are far from the only ones on set caught in older events, settings, and outfits. Unless the film magically consists of flashbacks and nothing else, then somebody is going to be travelling back through time. Seeing as Black Panther is gone, he probably won't be time-travelling, but these photos suggest he'll show up in the recent past.
16 RUMORED — Harley Keener
Unexpected? Yeah, you're telling us. Ty Simpkins' young tinkerer was last seen in Iron Man 3, but nobody expected him to return for Avengers 4. This particular report comes from IMDB, although nothing has officially come from Marvel about his casting. He even appeared in the MCU class photo, so Marvel may feel that the character is more important than fans might believe.
Nothing about his role in Iron Man 3 suggests he is anything more than a secondary character, but reports of him on-set have made the rounds in recent months.
Harley could feature in a flashback, or even in a time travel sequence. Why anyone would need to revisit him is a total mystery, but with so many past characters set for some kind of return, this announcement could very well be true. Or it's just some clever distraction conspiracy Marvel has put together to keep fans guessing about the returning cast. Either way — totally plausible.
It might just be a small cameo, but who knows. Marvel could be looking to add Iron Lad to the MCU, and this kid is a likely candidate.
What do you think? Could this be for a flashback? Could it be part of the time travel theory? Maybe little Harley Keener is up for something more important. Young Avengers, anybody?
15 CONFIRMED — Falcon
Falcon may not have survived Infinity War, but Anthony Mackie is set to return in Avengers 4. He might not be the coolest Avenger of the bunch, but he's on the road to being one of the most important members of the team by far.
As Captain America's right-hand man (which might be up for debate, but we'll get to that elsewhere on the list), Sam Wilson might just be next in line to wield the shield.
Mackie hasn't been very outspoken about his post-Avengers plans, but with Chris Evans' assumed departure from the franchise after 2019, it looks as though Falcon might be set to take his place.
Falcon's future story arc really depends on Cap's. If he doesn't make it through Avengers 4, will Sam take on the mantle of Captain America? He's a brave, experienced, and capable leader. If anybody can stand to wrangle the superhero personas he works with, it's him. With that said, even if Sam Wilson does become the next Cap, he'll likely still be playing second-fiddle to bigger name characters like Black Panther and Spider-Man.
Nobody should expect a "Falcon-Cap" solo movie anytime soon, but he could easily appear as Cap in team-ups, sequels, and spin-offs. Unless, the shield goes to Bucky, of course.
14 RUMORED — Star-Lord
Star-Lord is one of the many heroes who fell to the finger-snap - and he totally deserved it.
Yeah, yeah — everybody thinks he's fun and charming (it's admittedly hard to hate Chris Pratt), but Star-Lord is a bit of a moron. In Infinity War's most crucial moment, he lets his emotions get and better of him and causes the Gauntlet to slip through our heroes' grasp. This so-called "guardian of the galaxy" is one of the main reasons why half of said galaxy no longer exists. No dance-off is going to fix all that.
Surprisingly though, Chris Pratt's return for Avengers 4 has not yet been formally announced. This is especially bizarre given Star-Lord's popularity.
Like most of the heroes, Peter Quill will likely be resurrected through some Infinity Gem nonsense, but Marvel probably wants to make his bittersweet end seem final.
With another Guardians sequel set for the next phase of the MCU, it would be crazy to think that the leader of the gang won't make it back. There's no way fans won't get to see him and Gamora reunite, especially now that they have openly admitted their love for one another. And plus, he hasn't even returned to Earth yet! Wait until he finds out that a Zune's more a punchline than a state-of-the-art music player.
13 CONFIRMED — Bucky Barnes
His last words were "Steve?" before he faded away. If that doesn't break your heart, then were we even watching the same movie?
Sebastian Stan has garnered a huge number of fans with his role as Bucky Barnes. He is the heart of Civil War, his friendship with Cap is a highlight of The First Avenger, and his briefly villainous turn as The Winter Soldier has made him one of the coolest characters in the MCU. Thankfully, Stan has confirmed his return to the character in Avengers 4.
For years now, fans have speculated that Bucky would become the next Captain America after Chris Evans' retirement from the franchise. Even the movies foreshadow such a change by constantly tossing Bucky the shield — albeit for seconds at a time. Falcon might be Cap's right-hand man, but Bucky and Cap go way back. They're still inseparable, and it would make perfect sense for Cap to choose Bucky as a successor.
Both Falcon and Winter Soldier have taken over for Cap in the comics, so it's really anyone's guess. It could even be both of them! Or Bucky might just stick to "White Wolf" as dubbed by his Wakandan protectors. Either way, Barnes isn't down for the count.
12 RUMORED — Groot
Groot's going through a phase at the moment — the indifferent, angsty teen kind. Other than playing some video games and helping Thor build Stormbreaker, he didn't have much to do in Infinity War let alone have much dialogue with other characters. Well, we suppose Groot never has much dialogue to begin with, but his interaction with the rest of the cast is kept pretty minimal. And of course, he turns to ash at the end.
In any case, Groot is expected to return alongside the rest of the cast next year. While official confirmation hasn't come from Marvel just yet, motion-capture actor Terry Notary has been spotted on the Avengers 4 set. Notary plays both Teen Groot and Cull Obsidian in Avengers: Infinity War, and so even without confirmation of Vin Diesel's involvement, it's likely Groot is scheduled to reappear.
What's next for Groot? Well, it's difficult to say. It's not like he's a fleshed-out character like the rest of the Guardians. Perhaps he's just going to grow some more? Yeah, there really isn't much else to say here. Groot may have vanished, but he'll surely be back next year, or at least in time for the next Guardians of the Galaxy film.
11 CONFIRMED — Scarlet Witch
Even in Avengers: Age of Ultron, it was clear that Marvel had big plans for Scarlet Witch. Wanda is clearly one of the strongest members of the Avengers and has been given more and more of a spotlight as the franchise has progressed. Not to mention, her romantic involvement with the Vision has gotten fleshed out quite a bit in both Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. It makes perfect sense that Elizabeth Olsen will be returning for Avengers 4.
Wanda turned to dust with much of the cast, but her youth and continued narrative focus makes her a prime candidate to headline the next generation of Avengers films.
Scarlet Witch is also a major player in many comic book stories, and although none of them are slated to appear in the MCU just yet, it's likely that her time to shine is just around the corner. Olsen herself has even suggested one of these comics for a film adaptation: 2005's House of M, by Brian Michael Bendis.
House of M is a huge story with Wanda at the forefront, as well as most of the X-Men, but that's a bridge for the creatives at Marvel to cross when they come to it. Regardless, Scarlet Witch has plenty of room to grow within in the franchise, and it's unlikely Olsen will be stepping away from this still-evolving character any time soon.
10 RUMORED — Nick Fury
Let's be real here — Samuel L. Jackson has appeared in so many of the MCU films that this rumor is almost certainly true. With that said, he hasn't been officially confirmed by Marvel Studios, and the end-credits scene of Avengers: Infinity War has him and Maria Hill fade into nothingness after paging Captain Marvel. So, what gives?
Nick Fury has been laying low ever since his botched assassination and faked death in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Other than a brief appearance in Avengers: Age of Ultron, it's pretty unclear what he's been doing since then.
Seeing as he still has access to S.H.I.E.L.D. resources, he's probably still working as a spy. Who is he spying on exactly? Well, he's features heavily in the upcoming Captain Marvel, which deals with the shape-shifting Skrulls. Could he be investigating Skrulls hiding among humans on Earth?
In any case, even Bucky Barnes actor Sebastian Stan mentioned Jackson's attendance in the supposedly massive Avengers 4 scene that features much of the MCU's core characters. Avengers 4 will inevitably undo Thanos' damage to the universe and act as a tribute to the franchise's star-studded cast, so this wouldn't come as a surprise.
It's not technically a confirmation, but it sounds like a safe bet that Fury will return alongside Maria Hill and plenty others.
9 CONFIRMED — Vision
He was one of the most often (and correctly) predicted casualties in Avengers: Infinity War, and yet we still haven't seen the last of him. Paul Bettany has subtly implied his return for Avengers 4 and has even taken several on-set photos for his own social media accounts. The question is, in what capacity will he return?
At the end of Infinity War, the inevitable happened. Thanos made it to Earth, walked right up to the Vision, and ripped the Mind Stone out of his forehead. The encounter seemingly destroyed him, leaving a gash of sparking circuitry in his skull and all the color drained from his body. Despite this, his body didn't fade away like most of the other lost heroes, and so it might be possible to repair him. Wakandan technology could likely bring him back with ease, but will he be the same?
Vision's loss of color is a reference to the West Coast Avengers comics where Vision was dismantled and rebuilt — an event that left him cold, and emotionless, and completely white. The Vision returning next year may not be the one fans lost in Infinity War and will likely be the catalyst for an entirely new relationship dynamic with Scarlet Witch, who may need to deal with the loss of her love.
8 RUMORED — Mantis
Like most of the Guardians, Mantis will likely appear in Avengers 4 despite the lack of any real confirmation. Although by no means a focus of Avengers: Infinity War, she proves surprisingly useful in subduing Thanos. That is, until Star-Lord ruins everything and knocks her off of his head, thus leaving the Avengers at Thanos' mercy. Anyway, back to Mantis.
She's a fresh face in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and one that audiences have learned very little about. Her most notable characteristic aside from her powers is her relationship with Drax, which will likely be expanded upon in future films. Other than that, though, it's tough to say what she'll get into next. Hopefully she becomes more than just the gang's verbal punching bag, as most of the humor involving Mantis made her a punchline.
In any case, actress Pom Klementieff posted a photo on her social media hinting at a comeback.
Seeing as most of the heroes that fell to the Gauntlet finger-snap are returning, Klementieff will likely reprise her role next year, as well as in the third Guardians of the Galaxy film set for 2020.
Hopefully the newest Guardian will be given more time to develop and grow as a member of the team.
7 CONFIRMED — Drax
Despite Drax's death in Infinity War, he was one of the first members of the Guardians to confirm a return for the sequel. Dave Bautista might be known for being a ripped WWE superstar, but he became a little intimidated when he met Josh Brolin after he had begun training for his role as Cable in Deadpool 2.
He was impressed that Brolin had transformed his body so quickly and told him that he'll "be in better shape for [Avengers 4] because you make me self-conscious" upon seeing Brolin's new physique.
Of course, Bautista was only kidding, but by saying this he inadvertently confirmed his return. As for the character himself, Drax is one of the funniest people in the MCU and he is still waiting to have a proper showdown with Thanos. He likely won't be the one to take the villain down (nor does he really stand a chance), but he's too important for the franchise to lose and his revenge arc needs some closure.
Not to mention that Drax's best moments come when he meets new characters. His hilarious interactions are comedy gold, and he still has plenty of cast members to meet. He and Mantis might have a great dynamic, but imagine what it'll be like when he finally comes face-to-face with someone like the Hulk? Like all the other heroes, Drax will return — but there's no way Marvel would drop him without more moments like that.
6 CONFIRMED — Hawkeye
It's no longer a secret that Hawkeye wasn't present for Avengers: Infinity War. His absence in the film's marketing worried fans before its release, with many guessing that he would play some kind of secretive, important role. Unfortunately, Clint Barton just isn't in the movie.
According to Black Widow, Hawkeye and Ant-Man both made deals with the US government to protect their families, leaving them both under house arrest. This explains Scott Lang's ankle bracelet in trailers for Ant-Man and the Wasp, but we still have no confirmation of Hawkeye's whereabouts. This also contradicts Avengers: Age of Ultron, where we learn that his family lives on a "secret" farmhouse kept off the books by Nick Fury. Maybe it wasn't so secret after all.
As for Avengers 4, he's been spotted on set with a new suit and identity to match: Ronin. The Ronin codename is one that many superheroes have taken on in the comics, and it's been fueling rumors that Hawkeye may have suffered the loss of his family. Could it be that Thanos' use of the Gauntlet wiped out his wife and kids?
Whatever the reason for his new get-up, he'll probably be a key player alongside the still-living members of the Avengers next year.
5 RUMORED — Quicksilver
You didn't see that coming. Or maybe you did — Avengers 4 has begun to sound like a Marvel Studios class reunion.
Rumors of returning MCU actors have run rampant in recent months. These rumors mostly pertain to the core MCU cast members that still headline the films. Strangely enough, though, some of the rumors mention characters that have been killed off ages ago — ones completely uninvolved with the Infinity Gauntlet saga.
Rumors swirled that Quicksilver actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson was supposedly spotted on set, along with Frank Grillo, who plays the villain Crossbones.
Quicksilver doesn't survive the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron and Crossbones takes his own life at the beginning of Captain America: Civil War, which makes this report especially odd. We want to stress that this is a rumor, but with so many actors returning and theories of a time travel plot in the next film, they could easily make brief reappearances.
They might be part of the mysterious scene featuring most of the MCU characters, or perhaps they could show up in flashbacks. One thing is for sure, though — if the Red Skull can return almost a decade later in a completely secret cameo, then so can Quicksilver, Crossbones, or any other "retired" MCU alum.
4 CONFIRMED — Wasp
Somehow, this iconic Avengers member hasn't yet been part of the team, and won't do so until Avengers 4. Evangeline Lilly plays Hope Van Dyne, a key player in 2015's Ant-Man and a main character in the upcoming sequel Ant-Man and the Wasp, obviously.
It's just a shame that Marvel has taken this long to put Wasp — one of the few female heroes in the brand — at the forefront of a film.
She doesn't even get her suit until the credits of the 2016 movie, but this time she plays a starring role. When a new villain decides to steal Hank Pym's tech, Scott Lang and Hope team up to get it back, along with all of Scott's heist-loving best friends. It's currently unclear what the Ant-Man characters are up to during the events of Avengers: Infinity War, but marketing indicates that the pint-sized sequel may take place before or even concurrent to Thanos' invasion of Earth. Hopefully none of them inexplicably turn to dust.
Other than her strained relationship with her father Hank and the assumed loss of her mother Janet, audiences have gotten to learn very little about Hope Van Dyne. The only things we know for sure? She's got wings, blasters, and is ready to stand alongside the Avengers to save the universe.
3 RUMORED — Hank Pym
Among many of the secondary characters reportedly returning for Avengers 4 is Michael Douglas' Hank Pym, the creator of Pym Particle technology and the original Ant-Man. He plays a pivotal role in the MCU by recruiting Scott Lang as his successor and is one of the greatest minds in the franchise's long list of greatest minds — at one point, even working for S.H.I.E.L.D. as both a superhero and scientist. Last time the MCU checked in with Hank, he was giving Hope her new Wasp armor and thinking up ways to save his wife Janet from the quantum realm.
Ant-Man reveals that during one of Hank's earlier adventures, Janet Van Dyne, the original Wasp, may have gotten lost in the quantum realm — a microscopic universe previously thought inescapable until Scott Lang managed to do just that. Both Hank and Janet (as played by Michelle Pffeifer) are set to appear in Ant-Man and the Wasp, leading many to believe that the two will finally be reunited.
Douglas and Pffeifer are some of the actors mentioned by Sebastian Stan when he discussed Avengers 4's supposedly massive hero sequence, along with Lawrence Fishburne's Bill Foster, aka Goliath.
If this is true, it sounds like Thanos better get ready to fight some giant ants and wasps.
2 CONFIRMED — Ant-Man
Scott Lang is apparently stuck on house arrest and unable to come to the aid of his fellow super-people in Avengers: Infinity War. Trailers for Ant-Man and the Wasp tease that he hasn't given up his life of crime, or rather that his criminal ways are a necessary evil to keep his friends and family safe. It seems as his involvement in Captain America: Civil War will play a huge role in the film, and set photos indicate and equally substantial role in Avengers 4.
Images of Paul Rudd on set show Ant-Man alongside Tony Stark and Captain America, but it's a bit more complicated than that.
Most of these images depict New York during Loki's alien invasion. While Tony Stark is wearing casual clothes, Ant-Man is wearing his new suit from Ant-Man and the Wasp and Cap is wearing his suit from 2012's The Avengers. These images, as well as photos of Chris Hemsworth dressed up as Thor from 2011, have been the driving force behind Avengers 4's time travel theories.
Will Iron Man and Ant-Man travel through time and prepare the Avengers for Thanos' arrival? Or could they be trying to fix mistakes they've made in the past?
If the time travel theories are incorrect, then why would Ant-Man be present at the Battle of New York in a brand-new outfit when he was in jail at the time? We'll have to wait until 2019 to get all the answers.
1 RUMORED — Teen Cassie Lang/Stature
In one of the strangest Avengers 4 rumors yet, reports indicate that teen actress Emma Furhmann has been cast as an older version of Ant-Man's daughter, Cassie Lang — who eventually follows in her father's giant footsteps as the superhero known as Stature. A much younger Cassie Lang already appears in both Ant-Man films, but an older recasting of the character could suggest two things: further evidence of the time travel theory, or a massive jump forward in time by the end of Avengers 4.
In the latest Ant-Man and the Wasp trailer, a young Cassie Lang says "I wish I could fight bad guys like you!" to her father, Scott. Could this be a hint towards a potential superhero career as Stature? Of course, these rumors could be false, or Furhmann might just be playing a slightly older version of the character with no superpowers. In that case, time travel still seems to be the most logical explanation.
With that said, Marvel Studios is gearing up for a new era in their cinematic universe. They might be trying to cast younger talent to lead new Avengers films, or even as future replacements for the heroes we know and love. Who knows — maybe the Young Avengers could be the future of the biggest franchise in movie history.
Who do you want to see return in Avengers 4? Leave a comment below and let us know! Avengers 4 hits theaters on May 3rd, 2019.