Tony Stark meeting Natasha Romanoff in Iron Man 2

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Black Widow set the pace for Marvel movies to come after a successful opening weekend. But before the film arrived, the internet was running wild with rumors of Robert Downey Jr. returning to the MCU fold. The thought of Downey Jr. and Scarlett Johansson sharing the screen again created excitement amongst Marvel fans. But those rumors turned out to be untrue once the film arrived. Years after the rumors began, Black Widow's writer spoke on those pesky RDJ rumors popping up in the Marvel film.

The Robert Downey Jr. rumors had been floating around since the film was announced. That goes against Marvel’s well-known veil of secrecy. But even Black Widow writer Eric Pearson was puzzled by those rampant rumors. Pearson finally decided to address those Iron Man cameo rumors while dropping a nugget for Marvel fans.

I feel bad for the person who asked me this the other day because I said 'there was never any discussion,' but I do remember now that one version of the script prior to me literally had written into it 'The end moment of Civil War with Tony and Natasha,' but it was old footage.

So, that rumored cameo was just the (scrapped) inclusion of a Captain America: Civil War scene. While the revelation was a letdown, it showed just how vulnerable Marvel’s infamous secrecy can be at times. All the uproar and online rumors about Robert Downey Jr. stemmed from an early version of the Black Widow script. Well, at least, Eric Pearson finally put that rumor to rest. But if the rumors sent fans into a frenzy, then what was going on at Marvel headquarters?

Marvel fans can re-watch the Infinity Saga on Disney+. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.

As the rumors started to spread, Eric Pearson revealed some of the behind-the-scenes banter to the Phase Zero-MCU podcast. At that point, Robert Downey Jr. had parted from the MCU. The Black Widow scribe gave some insight into Marvel’s response to the rumors, saying:

I remember when those rumors came out I was in London in our War Room office and I just looked around and was like 'Are we? Am I supposed to be? I have the script right here, Tony Stark's not in it.' Everyone was like 'No no.'...I don't know where it came from unless somebody got a very old version with this kind of scene, which wasn't even a new scene. I don't know, I don't know where it came from.

Giving a peek into Marvel’s mindset painted the scene of a conglomerate just as clueless about the rumor as fans were. Even in the interview, Eric Pearson seemed just as puzzled by the rumors today. To get Pearson’s full take, check out his response below:

Not having Robert Downey Jr. in the Marvel isn’t a surprise given his current direction after leaving the MCU. But that doesn’t mean the film isn’t worthwhile. You can watch Black Widow without RDJ in theaters and on Disney+.

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