23 Storylines That Marvel Cut From The MCU And Why

Bestinau got that-

All of these should end up in the next season of What If?

Even though the number of MCU movies has increased exponentially over the last few years, Marvel Studios still has to cut a surprising number of concepts and storylines from each one.

While scrapping certain elements makes sense for runtime or story purposes, it’s still fascinating to see what could have been.

Here are 23 scrapped Marvel storylines that would’ve been super cool to see:

Warning: Spoilers ahead!


In the original script for Spider-Man: No Way Home, Stephen Strange “knows firsthand the dangers of screwing with these things,” but when the release of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was pushed from before their movie’s release to several months after, the screenwriters “changed it so he was a person who doesn’t know that much about the multiverse.”

Sony Pictures Entertainment / Via youtube.com

“We were actually working off of things that were happening in Doctor Strange 2, and trying to incorporate them into our script,” screenwriter Chris McKenna told Variety.


Additionally, a new character was supposed to introduce Peter Parker to his two variants (aka Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man) right after Aunt May’s death — and concept art suggests that it could’ve been America Chavez.

Marvel Studios / Via youtube.com

McKenna told Variety, “They are brought by a Marvel character going, ‘Here are the saving graces and they’re going to help you through this.’ It was just more of a deus ex machina.”

Xochitl Gomez is now set to debut as America Chavez in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.


Also, in an early version of the script, the villains raided one of the Department of Damage Control’s containers of Stark tech and used it to upgrade themselves.

Sony Pictures Releasing / © Marvel Entertainment / Courtesy Everett Collection

“I had Max [Dillon / Electro] hot-wire a daisy-chain of Mk50 arc reactors as a power-up,” concept artist Phil Saunders shared on Instagram.


Early into the The Avengers writing process, director Joss Whedon was concerned that Loki wasn’t going to be a formidable enough villain, so he wrote a draft with Ezekiel Stane, the son of Iron Man villain Obadiah Stane, as a secondary villain.

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection

Whedon told Thrillist, “I also worried that one British character actor was not enough to take on Earth’s mightiest heroes, and that we’d feel like we were rooting for the overdog.”

However, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige took one look at his draft and told him no.


Likewise, when Whedon thought Scarlett Johansson wasn’t going to return, he “wrote a huge bunch of pages starring the Wasp” in Black Widow’s place.

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He told Thrillist, “At the very beginning, I wrote entire drafts that had no bearing on what I would eventually film.”


In the case that directors Joe and Anthony Russo couldn’t get Robert Downey Jr. to return for the third Captain America film, they planned to focus on Jack Kirby’s 1976 storyline about the Madbomb — “which makes people crazy… It almost like zombifies them — but not literally.”

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./courtesy Everett / Everett Collection

Anthony told Entertainment Weekly, “The charm of the Madbomb is that you turn hordes of people into berserkers. That was the physical challenge that Cap and company would have had to face.”

Joe continued, “The notion of the Madbomb would have been Cap having to fight civilians and how he would handle that. We were always trying to put him into these interesting moral conundrums because of his nature. That would have made a compelling third act because if civilians are the antagonists, how could he stop them without killing them?”

Steve would’ve been fighting his zombified friends as well, but Baron Zemo still would’ve been the main villain. They planned to make him the one setting off the Madbomb. 


In an early version of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, rather than trying to get Steve Rogers and Natasha Romanoff killed, Arnim Zola tried to make a deal with them to help them escape if Steve flipped a switch to let him upload his preserved consciousness to the internet.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

Steve would’ve gotten the information on Project Insight from Zola instead of Agent Sitwell, and the heroes would’ve escaped through a secret passage.


In another incarnation of the story, Clint Barton was going to be one of the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents sent to track down Steve Rogers — only for him to reveal that he was tricking S.H.I.E.L.D. to help Steve get away.

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection

Joe Russo told the Screen Rant Underground podcast, “There was an awesome sequence where they confronted each other in a ravine on the outskirts of D.C. and Hawkeye was shooting a series of arrows closing in on Cap, Cap closing in on him. And then Cap took him down and he realized for the first time that Hawkeye was trying to trick S.H.I.E.L.D, where he whispered something into Cap’s ear that Cap had a tracker on his suit and to punch Hawkeye to make it look real, because there was a Quinjet hovering above where they were watching the feedback back at S.H.I.E.L.D.”

While the scene was “heartbreaking” for them to cut, it ultimately came down to a conflict with Jeremy Renner’s schedule.


ABC’s initial plans for Jessica Jones included Carol Danvers (who’s Jessica’s best friend in the comics), but after Marvel Comics rebranded her from Ms. Marvel to Captain Marvel, Marvel Studios decided to give the character her own movie instead.

Null / ©Walt Disney Co./courtesy Everett / Everett Collection

So, when production on Jessica Jones moved to Netflix, they replaced Carol with Trish Walker/Hellcat.


The ending of Avengers: Age of Ultron was supposed to introduce more new Avengers — including Carol Danvers.

Marvel Studios / Via youtube.com

However, Feige didn’t want to just drop Captain Marvel into the end of the movie for shock value. 

Additionally, Brie Larson wasn’t even cast in the role yet, so a stand-in played the role in a deleted scene. 


Whedon also wanted to introduce Spider-Man, but Marvel Studios’ deal to include the Sony-owned property in its movies wasn’t finalized until Whedon had already finalized Age of Ultron.

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./courtesy Everett / Everett Collection

On the Empire Film Podcast, he said, “I would have put both of them in, but neither of the deals were made. And then they were like, ‘We’re making a Captain Marvel movie and we’ve got Spider-Man as a property,’ and I’m like, ‘I’ve already locked my film, you fuckers! Thanks for nothing.'”


In initial plans for Thor: The Dark World, Thor defeated Malekith by summoning lightning from all nine realms at once.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

According to the DVD commentary, this idea was scrapped in order to give Jane Foster, Darcy Lewis, and Erik Selvig bigger roles in the final battle against the Dark Elves.


Initially, Thor: Ragnarok was supposed to follow up on Thor’s quest to find the Infinity Stones, which he started in Avengers: Age of Ultron, and in early teasers, it was supposed to be one of the “darkest” MCU films yet.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

However, director Taika Waititi wanted to focus on “dismantling and destroying the old idea and rebuilding it in a new way that’s fresh” insteadHe told Entertainment Weekly, “Everyone’s got a slightly new take on their characters, so in that way, it feels like [this is] the first Thor.” 

Waititi was able to introduce his unique vision to the third Thor film because the Marvel Studios’ separation from Marvel Entertainment allowed for more creative freedom. 


When actor Jeff Bridges was first cast in Iron Man, Obadiah Stane/Iron Monger was supposed to live, leaving his empty iron suit behind.

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

Bridges told Gizmodo, “When we were shooting that film they said, ‘No we’re not going to do that. We’re just going to have you go’…I was kind of disappointed. Because I was thinking [I would] be in the sequels. But they said it’s a comic book; maybe the Iron Monger will come back. I said, ‘Yeah, right.'”


Iron Man 2 actor Mickey Rourke “explained to Justin Theroux…and to [Jon] Favreau that [he] wanted to bring some other layers and colors [and] not just make [Ivan Vanko/Whiplash] a complete murderous revenging bad guy,” so they allowed him to add more depth to the character.

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

“Unfortunately, the [people] at Marvel just wanted a one-dimensional bad guy so most of the performance ended up [on] the floor,” Rourke told Crave Online. “If they want to make mindless comic book movies, then I don’t want to be a part of that. I don’t want to have to care so much and work so hard, and then fight them for intelligent reasoning, and just because they’re calling the shots they… You know, I didn’t work for three months on the accent and all the adjustments and go to Russia just so I could end up on the floor.”


In the original Iron Man 3 script, Maya Hansen was the lead villain instead of Aldrich Killian, but the filmmakers “were given a no-holds-barred memo saying that cannot stand and [Marvel corporate] changed [their] minds because, after consulting, [they’ve] decided that toy won’t sell as well if it’s a female.”

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection

Director Shane Black told Uproxx, “In the earlier draft, the woman was essentially Killian – and they didn’t want a female Killian, they wanted a male Killian. I liked the idea, like Remington Steele, you think it’s the man but at the end, the woman has been running the whole show. They just said, ‘no way.'”


Ant-Man director Peyton Reed wanted Rick Moranis from Honey, I Shrunk the Kids to make a cameo.

Buena Vista Pictures / ©Buena Vista Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

Reed told Screen Junkies that it was “still during the period…where [Moranis] wasn’t doing so much acting.” 


In the first draft of Avengers: Infinity War, Peter Quill tracked down Howard the Duck (who would be voiced by Ken Jeong) on an outlier planet and interrupted his poker game to get some information.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

Director Anthony Russo told Fandom, “That was a much-beloved scene by us, but it just didn’t end up fitting at all.”


Additionally, some concept art showed plans for Thor and Rocket Raccoon to battle the two giant snakes, which appeared to be the Midgard Serpent, who’s tied to the Ragnarok legend in both the comics and Norse mythology.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

The scene was likely cut in order for Thor’s journey to obtain Stormbreaker to be more emotional than action-packed.


More concept art from Avengers: Endgame revealed the potential return of the Frost Giants from Thor as part of the final battle.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

Concept artist Jared S. Marantz experimented with the idea of giving the Frost Giants the power to make their own armor out of ice.


Scenes revealing more of Razor Fist’s backstory and his Ten Rings recruitment were filmed for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, but they were all cut.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / © Marvel Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

However, a few of the scenes were included as extras on the film’s Blu-ray release. 

Actor Florian Munteanu told ComicBookMovie.com, “There was a reason why he replaced his blade with the dragon sword and fights with two swords…[Additionally] I always call [Wenwu] stepdad because, at the end of the day, Wenwu gave him a new life and purpose and a home. He trained him and took him away from the streets.”


Eternals was supposed to have a bleak ending “with everybody back on the ship, minds erased and just going on to another planet, like The Twilight Zone.

Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

Director Chloé Zhao told Empire, “I didn’t hate it, because I’m used to films that are more melancholy. But I don’t think it went down well with audiences.”


And finally, Eros was almost a main character in Eternals — and he wouldn’t have been in the movie at all without Harry Styles.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / © Marvel Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

“I had been wanting to bring Eros into the MCU. So I kept mentioning it to Kevin [Feige] at every chance I had in the hallway, because I love the idea of Eros being another Eternal, another Ajak,” Zhao told Empire. “But I never said once to Kevin, ‘Here’s the character. Let’s find an actor.’ For me, it was a package deal. It’s got to be Harry. That’s how I pitched it to Kevin.”

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