It turns out Spider-Man: Far From Home had a much more elaborate web in the planning stages. The upcoming Spidey sequel officially wraps up Marvel Studios' long-running Infinity Saga, as well as giving us our first real glimpse of the fallout from Avengers: Endgame, including the implications of the multiverse. But the MCU flick almost featured a cameo that would've helped usher in the next era for the cinematic super-franchise.
*Warning: Mild spoilers for Spider-Man: Far From Home below*
It's no secret that Far From Home will feature both Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Colbie Smulders), but another Marvel stalwart almost made an appearance. Speaking with ComicBook, Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige and creative executive Eric Carroll revealed there was some early discussion about Anthony Mackie's Sam Wilson showing up with the stars and stripes he inherited in the closing moments of Endgame.
"We briefly talked about bringing in Falcon as Captain America at the end," Carroll began. "Like, maybe once Peter's arced, and he's sort of like leading the team, maybe he calls in a favor."
Ultimately, the idea was scrapped, with Carroll explaining that "it was really important to the arc of this movie that there not be other Avengers available to Nick Fury or Peter, so he’d have to step up and do it himself."
Feige added that Mackie's potential cameo was nixed to keep the film about "Peter getting out of the shadow, not just of Tony [Stark] but of the Avengers in general. Because, by the way, he's Spider-Man. He doesn't need to be in the shadow of the Avengers."
Mackie himself responded to the news on Twitter, jokingly accusing his would-be co-star of messing up a chance he didn't seem to realize he even had.
"Sh*t. REALLY?! Way to go [Tom Holland] to mess that one up!" Mackie wrote, implying that any discussions about a Sam Wilson cameo didn't involve him. Which, honestly, isn't surprising, given that he didn't realize he was going to be an Avenger at the end of the Age of Ultron movie until he saw it at the premiere.
Despite never having his own solo outing, Mackie's no stranger to MCU appearances. His character was first introduced in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and after Age of Ultron he briefly sparred with Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) in Ant-Man. He also fought with Team Cap in Civil War, and — like most of the MCU — appeared in both Infinity War and Endgame.
It's still a little unclear when we'll get to see Mackie use the shield he was given by an aged Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) earlier this summer. Relatively little is known about Marvel's upcoming film slate, though we'll certainly find out more when they return to SDCC next month.
Mackie will be re-teaming with co-star Sebastian Stan for their upcoming Disney+ series, tentatively titled Falcon and the Winter Soldier. However, it's unclear when, exactly, the show will be set, though it's obviously implied when Sam Wilson was still going by his previous alter ego.
One thing that we're all sure of is that Spider-Man: Far From Home swings into theaters everywhere on July 2.