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A Theory About Gwyneth Paltrow's Avengers 4 'Spoiler'

Did Gwyneth Paltrow really reveal a spoiler for Avengers 4 when she suggested Pepper Potts is pregnant? The "news" was revealed in a tie-in magazine for Avengers: Infinity War, published by Titan. Reflecting on Tony and Pepper's journey together, Paltrow noted, "now this decade later they're married, and they have a child."

The comment is all the more surprising because Avengers: Infinity War actually features a scene in which Pepper insists she's not pregnant. As a result, the quote is generally viewed as a spoiler for Avengers 4. Most viewers are assuming Avengers 4 won't simply follow on from the events of Infinity War. Rather, they're expecting a time-jump of some kind - perhaps only one year, perhaps more. That mean Pepper may have actually given birth by Avengers 4, and there may actually be a Tony Stark Jr. in the film. But is this information actually reliable, and is Pepper really pregnant in Avengers: Infinity War?

Related: What We Know About Avengers 4's 'Every Character' Scene

Evaluating the Source of the News

Paltrow's quote originates in an official preview magazine for Infinity War, published by Titan. That makes it rather surprising to see a potential Avengers 4 spoiler in the magazine, especially given every single word would have been carefully parsed by Marvel. If this is indeed a spoiler, it's not a major one, and any pregnancy would not be a core part of Iron Man's arc in Avengers 4.

But the comment is actually rather confusing, given that Infinity War explicitly featured a scene in which Tony Stark suggested having a child with Pepper - and she insisted she wasn't pregnant. Even the fact Tony Stark was actually talking about parenthood in Infinity War is a testament to how his character has grown over the course of the last decade's worth of films. The Tony Stark of Iron Man definitely wasn't ready to marry, let alone build a family with his wife. Paltrow let slip the potential spoiler when discussing this character arc, describing the relationship between Pepper and Tony as evolving "in all of the ways that great romances evolve." Given that context, it's entirely possible that Paltrow got confused, and was referencing the conversation we saw in Infinity War.

Compounding this issue is the fact that promotional material like the preview magazine tends to be prepared well in advance, before editing of the actual film has been completed. And there's some evidence the Russos filmed different versions of this scene, carefully choosing between them. Set photos for Infinity War showed Pepper and Tony accompanied by Jon Favreau's Happy Hogan, and he wasn't in the final cut. It's quite possible the dialogue was switched up while shooting different versions - and perhaps one of those versions had Pepper pregnant.

Related: Does Marvel Have A Super-Team Good Enough To Replace The Avengers?

Infinity War Does Set This Up

If this is indeed a spoiler, though, it's not actually a major one at all. The conversation in Avengers: Infinity War was a clear signpost to the direction of travel for the relationship between Tony and Pepper. For them to actually have a child together would be an entirely natural development.

With Robert Downey Jr. expected to leave the MCU after Avengers 4, there's expectation that Iron Man won't make it out of the sequel alive. If that's true, Pepper's pregnancy would add another layer of tragedy to Tony Stark's death. Crucially, though, it would actually reframe the tragedy; it would give Stark a personal legacy, as well as a superheroic one. He'd leave behind a young Stark, a character who Marvel could potentially develop decades down the line. It would most likely be relegated to a single scene, one with heavy implications but little development, given there's an entire universe for the Avengers to save.

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It's important to remember that, however exciting this potential spoiler may be, it's not going to be a central part of Tony Stark's arc in Avengers 4. There's no way Marvel would have allowed that quote to be published if they believed it gave away something truly significant. So, if this is indeed a spoiler, it should be seen as a relatively minor one - perhaps relegated to a single scene, one with heavy implications but little development, given there's a universe for the Avengers to save.

More: Every Phase of the MCU Has Been Better Than the Last

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A Theory About Gwyneth Paltrow's Avengers 4 'Spoiler'