Hawkeye’s Jeremy Renner Reveals He Almost Quit The MCU And Why He Gave Marvel An Ultimatum

Jeremy Renner in The Avengers
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

With a decade’s worth of experience in the Marvel Cinematic Universe under his belt, Jeremy Renner is certainly one of the franchise’s OGs. The actor made his MCU debut in 2011’s Thor and, since then, he’s been a part of some of the series’ biggest moments. And now, his veteran Avenger is finally set to take center stage in Disney+’s Hawkeye. Though he’s been a consistent Marvel Studios collaborator for years, it turns out he almost quit at one point. And this resulted in him delivering a pretty serious ultimatum to the massive entertainment company. 

The Oscar-nominated actor was only a few years into his Marvel stint when his daughter, Ava, was born. As you can imagine, his world changed when his little girl came into his life. As a new dad, he wanted to spend more time with this child, though his commute from London to Los Angeles made things a bit difficult. So when he and Marvel Studios went back to the negotiating table, he told the studio that they could recast him if they couldn’t adjust his work schedule accordingly. In a lengthy interview with Men’s Health, he reflected on those discussions, saying:

It taught me how to have the nuts to say, ‘Everyone, fuck off. It’s my time with my daughter.’ I said, ‘Fine, recast me. I’m going to be here with my daughter.’ It was pretty gnarly.

Most no doubt know that Marvel actors can have a lot of work on their respective plates. In most cases, they commit to multiple projects, which release over a certain number of years. And filming for said productions can take months or encompass an entire year, like the back-to-back shoots for both Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame did. Jeremy Renner’s comments seem to indicate that the negotiations were initially a little tense. But ultimately, Disney was seemingly willing to oblige when it came to the requests. 

That voracious paternal spirit seems to have translated to his superhero character as well. Clint Barton is unique amongst his crime-fighting cohorts due to the fact that he’s a father to three kids, one of which is a daughter named Lila. Barton seems to have a special relationship with his little girl, as the two bond over their love of archery. Clint still, however, has plenty of love for all of his children, who will again come into play during the events of the upcoming streaming show.

And funny enough, the hero (and Jeremy Renner by extension) becomes a father-like figure to another person in his latest outing. The series will see him take on a protégé in the form of Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop, who will likely learn a lot from her mentor. Likewise, Steinfelld soaked up plenty of knowledge from Renner, like how much training is actually necessary to play an archer.

It’s a good thing those negotiations did turn out well, as the Mayor of Kingstown star obviously wouldn’t have been able to flesh out his character in this new venture. It’ll be exciting to see what he adds to the Marvel character’s journey -- and whether or not he sticks around in the cinematic universe by the time this newest adventure is done. 

Hawkeye drops its first two episodes on Disney+ on Wednesday, November 24.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.