Will Iron Man ever return to the MCU? The Russo Brothers say it has to be 'earned'

Gregory Wakeman
The Russo Brothers insists that the MCU has to earn Iron Man's return, if it ever actually happens. (Image by Marvel)

It feels like, ever since Iron Man perished towards the end of Avengers: Endgame, there has been some kind of discussion about whether or not Robert Downey Jr’s beloved character will ever return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

It doesn’t seem to matter that his resurrection would immediately diminish the power of his death in the blockbuster, fans love Downey Jr’s performance as Iron Man so much that they are willing to sacrifice that in order to see him in a future Marvel film.

Read More: The Russo Brothers have no plans to direct another Marvel film after 'Avengers: Endgame'

But how do Avengers: Endgame directors Anthony and Joe Russo feel about Iron Man potentially returning to the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

During a recent interview on the Reel Blend podcast, they were asked that very question, and it turns out that they think it can happen, under one stipulation. It has to be “earned.”

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo speak onstage at the #IMDboat at San Diego Comic-Con 2019: Day Three at the IMDb Yacht on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for IMDb)

“I mean look, certainly we've always said this and we believe this about stakes have to be real, and if they're not real, like the audience's emotional investment in the moment and in those characters in the narrative is only...is contingent upon them feeling like there's potential. There's something to be lost,” explained Anthony Russo. 

Read More: 'Avengers: Endgame': Russo Brothers IMAX interview

“So in all of our storytelling, even though those Marvel movies a lot of the story was difficult, we wanted to commit very hard to that idea. So to answer your question, I think it would be in the context of that. It depends on how he was brought back. It depends on the storytelling, but it is certainly something that has to be earned.”

“It's certainly something that would shock and surprise audiences, so you can't simply just bring him back. There would have to be a really compelling, innovative, unpredictable narrative event to find your way there in order for it to be worth it.”