It's almost a crime that Disney and Marvel Studios have done so little with the bravest member of The Avengers. We're of course talking about Clint Barton a.k.a. Hawkeye, the only member of the original six Avengers who somehow isn't even in the animated Marvel Studios logo in front of their films.
He's also nowhere to be seen in the marketing materials for next month's Avengers: Infinity War. No voiceover like the other originals in the trailer, no magazine covers (poor Jeremy Renner had to share fan art after I asked him to), no Twitter Emoji, no presence in the trailers, art, or merchandise (except this bow toy). What the hell happened?
For the latter omissions, there's at least a reason for the elite archer and marksman of Earth's Mightiest - and its heart and soul - being kept under wraps. In the two years since the events of Captain America: Civil War, he returned to his off the grid hiding spot which played a major role in Avengers: Age of Ultron - a secret family ranch where Barton's wife and three kids live. Hawkeye's sort of retired as revealed by the Infinity War prelude comics, but he will return and Renner promised that fans will get "wonderful things" from his story arc.
While visiting the set of Avengers: Infinity War last summer, Hawkeye was nowhere to be found, not even mentioned in any of the interviews. It almost became a running gag for me personally as one of the few who recognize the importance of Hawkeye. So, when we had the chance to chat with directors Anthony and Joe Russo a second time during out set visit, I asked the question you should all be asking.
One thing we haven't talked about today is Hawkeye, can you talk about his role and what he's been up to in the last two years?
Joe Russo: Hawkeye, coming out of Civil War, is in the same position that Cap and Falcon are at the end of that movie. And Ant-Man. And coming into this movie characters who were on Cap's side coming out of the Civil War. Some made certain decisions and others made other decisions that led to different paths in them dealing with oversight in this movie in a different way. So Hawkeye's on his own journey in this movie.
Anthony Russo: Yeah. He has a unique reaction to the Civil War situation that puts him in a special spot in this film.
We also got a fun little tease from Property Master Russell Bobbitt while on set about the character so stay tuned for more on the bravest Avenger in the coming days. We also have a theory about what's up with Hawkeye that lines up with this...
Update 3: We're finally able to share what property master Russell Bobbitt told us about Hawkeye's new Avengers 3-4 gear!
Allow me to explain: Here’s Why Hawkeye May Become Ronin in Avengers 4