Robert Downey Jr. Knew He & Chris Evans Had To Retire From The MCU

Iron Man actor Robert Downey Jr. says he felt it was time for him and Captain America star Chris Evans to leave the MCU after Avengers: Endgame.

Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark in Iron Man

Iron Man star Robert Downey Jr. believes that it was time for him and Captain America actor Chris Evans to retire from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In Avengers: Endgame, their characters both met their ends in entirely different ways. Tony Stark/Iron Man (Downey Jr.) sacrificed himself to save the world. On the other hand, Steve Rogers/Captain America (Evans), decided to stay in the past to live out his life with Peggy Carter.

Both actors' departures from the MCU left fans feeling desolate. There was also a lot of controversy surrounding Captain America's final fate, although it had more to do with the consequences of time travel than anything else. Marvel continues to debate whether he created an alternate universe when he chose to stay in the past or whether he remained in the main universe. Regardless, fans mourned the loss of two of the most prominent members of the Avengers.

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Related: Avengers: Endgame Writer Confirms Time Travel Was Accidental

Downey Jr., though, believes that both his and Evans' time had come to an end in the MCU. In an interview with Disney twenty-three magazine (via Digital Spy), he concluded that both characters were ready to be retired. He said:

"We had to get off. We opted to, and knew it was part of the job to get off the bus while it rolled on to other destinations. There's something very sobering about it. I'm glad he and I will be there to welcome others as they retire their jerseys."

Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. as Steve Rogers/Captain America and Tony Stark/Iron Man

Downey Jr. also admitted he felt like he didn't leave behind as much of a legacy as his co-stars. However, Disney still honored him at the recent D23 Expo by crowning him a Disney Legend. It was his character, Iron-Man, that launched the MCU, over a decade ago. Now, it's up to someone else to pick up the crown. In Spider-Man: Far From Home, it seemed that Spider-Man might be the one Tony had chosen to pick up the slack.

Unfortunately, Spider-Man's current fate in the MCU is on hold. Failed negotiations between Disney and Sony have recently seen him pulled from that universe. If Spider-Man leaves the MCU, he will no longer be an Avenger, meaning that the hole left by Iron Man's departure still needs filling. Fortunately, Marvel has a lot of plans for its superheroes during phase 4, which means any one of those characters could step up to the plate.

However, fans will still mourn the loss of Iron Man and Captain America. It wasn't just their characters that made the MCU great, it was also the actors behind them that fans loved. Downey Jr. and Evans are now moving on to bigger and better things, but fans will undoubtedly remember their time in the MCU fondly.

Next: Every Reveal From The Avengers: Endgame Commentary

Source: Disney twenty-three magazine (via Digital Spy)

Key Release Dates
  • Black Widow (2020) release date: May 01, 2020
  • Eternals (2020) release date: Nov 06, 2020
  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) release date: Feb 12, 2021
  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2021) release date: May 07, 2021
  • Thor: Love and Thunder (2021) release date: Nov 05, 2021
  • Black Panther 2 (2022) release date: May 06, 2022
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