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Rumor of the day: Could Silver Surfer show up in Avengers: Infinity War?

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Mar 21, 2018, 9:18 AM EDT

With all the superheroes that Marvel is cramming into Avengers: Infinity War already, there's an odd new rumor out there suggesting that the studio might fit one more totally unexpected character into the mix.

The unproven item comes to us from Metacritic (via CinemaBlend), which posted a cast list for Avengers: Infinity War that included everyone we already know is in the movie, plus a person named Curt Clendenin who is listed as portraying — get this — the Silver Surfer.

First of all, who is Curt Clendenin? He's a rather obscure actor with a lot of bit parts and uncredited walk-ons listed at his IMDb page, as well as the founder or co-founder of a film festival, several sketch comedy groups, and an organization dedicated to the memory of late comedian Andy Kaufman.

But he's also seemingly aware of that cast list, because his Twitter account features a large picture of the Surfer as wallpaper and in two instances he answered direct tweets with quotes from the one-time herald of world-eating bad guy Galactus:

Now, either Clendenin is having some fun at everyone's expense, or he knows something we don't. Let's say for a moment that it's true and he is playing the Silver Surfer; the likely scenario would be that he's essaying the character physically for motion-capture purposes with another, well-known actor providing the voice (hey, Peter Dinklage is in the movie and we still don't know who he's playing, so there's one candidate).

But there's one big stumbling block to the idea of Norrin Radd (the Surfer's real name) even being in the picture, and that's this: Marvel Studios does not own the screen rights to the character. Those belong to 20th Century Fox, which already used him once (played physically by Doug Jones, vocally by Laurence Fishburne) in 2007's Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.

There's word lately that Fox is working on a new, standalone movie starring the Surfer, but there's little info on it and those plans could change radically if Disney completes its proposed purchase of Fox and brings all the Marvel properties that studio controls back home to the MCU. But all that is still a long way off if it happens.

Could Marvel and Fox have struck a deal to allow the former to use the Surfer in the new Avengers movie? Sure, that's possible. Relations between the two studios, once quite frosty, have thawed in recent years even before the merger talk, with deals being made that notably allowed Marvel access to Fox-owned properties like Ego, the Living Planet (for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) and the Skrulls (for Captain Marvel). And Radd does play a role in The Infinity Gauntlet, the comic book storyline that Infinity War is loosely based on, so his inclusion makes sense on that front.

But we would take all this with a grain of salt for now. SYFY WIRE has reached out to Clendenin directly for comment, and naturally Marvel has been silent about it all. Avengers: Infinity War is out April 27, and unless somebody proves this rumor true or false in the meantime, we'll likely have to wait until then to see if the movie features a certain shimmering figure streaking across the cosmos on his surfboard.