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The Best Improvised And Unscripted Moments In The MCU

Updated February 5, 2021 36.2k votes 5.6k voters 451.5k views16 items

List RulesVote up the most entertaining improvised moments in the MCU.

With more than 20 films in its catalog and several billion dollars reaped from the global box office, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is a Hollywood juggernaut. It stands to reason that a franchise this successful must have cracked the script-writing code, delivering laugh-out-loud dialogue and memorable moments with machine-like precision. Yet, with all due credit to the MCU's screenwriters, some of the series' most standout bits of dialogue never appeared in any screenplay. 

Over the years, various film commentaries, interviews, books, and special features have revealed a surprising number of unscripted Marvel moments. Sometimes these improvised Marvel scenes were created the day of filming by the actors and directors; other times, actors couldn't help tossing in an extra bit of business while filming a scene. These are the funniest, silliest, and most charming improvised lines in Marvel movies.

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  • 1

    Tony Admitting He's Iron Man - 'Iron Man'

    In the original Iron Man comics, Tony Stark spent several years pretending the "Iron Man" was actually his personal bodyguard. This is the story that S.H.I.E.L.D. cooks up for Tony at the end of the Iron Man film, but the billionaire playboy philanthropist just can't help himself from taking the credit. It's a move that feels entirely true to the character, and "I am Iron Man" became a pivotal moment for the MCU. 

    According to Marvel Studios head and Iron Man producer Kevin Feige, the line was ad-libbed by Robert Downey Jr., and Feige liked the change so much that he rolled with it. "It’s a fine line," Feige told IndieWire, adding:

    If you're changing something for no reason, that’s one thing, but if you're changing something because you want to double-down on the spirit of who the character is? That's a change we'll make. Tony Stark not reading off the card and not sticking with the fixed story? Him just blurting out "I am Iron Man"? That seems very much in keeping with who that character is.

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  • 2

    'Get Help' Was Thought Up The Day It Was Filmed - 'Thor: Ragnarok'

    While attempting to escape Sakaar, foster brothers Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) discuss how they might get past the guards. Thor gleefully suggests a maneuver called "get help," which Loki flatly refuses. Smash cut to Thor carrying Loki and screaming, "Get help!" before throwing his brother at the nearest guard. 

    According to Hiddleston, this sequence was conceived the day it was filmed. "We literally just came up with it on the day," the actor told attendees of the 2018 ACE Comic Con. Hiddleston added that it's not just a funny bit but also a touching glimpse into the characters' relationship:

    This idea that this is a trick that Thor and Loki used to... use it as a game when they were kids and they stopped doing it a long time ago but it used to work and it might just work this time. They got one last ace up their sleeve. And the idea that Loki hated it, and just was like, "I don’t want to do it. It’s humiliating." And that Thor was like, "You’re going to love it! Come on!" in a big brother way. And then it works. In that moment, I always love the fact that it wasn't just a funny moment, but actually, you understand something deeper about them as brothers, and I think those moments are really special.

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  • While Peter Parker turning to ash before Tony Stark's eyes was always part of Avengers: Infinity War, the touching words he utters to "Mr. Stark" as he disappears are 100% Tom Holland. 

    During a Q&A at Iowa City High School, Infinity War co-director Joe Russo said the direction given to Tom Holland was something to the effect of, "Act like you don't want to go." This led to Peter's ominous "I don't feel so good, Mr. Stark," and his repeated plea of "I don't want to go."

    This improvisation was also confirmed by screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.

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  • 4

    RDJ Snacking His Way Through The MCU

    According to several sources, actor Robert Downey Jr. has a penchant for hiding food on movie sets.

    It got to the point where filmmakers would start writing the snacks into the scenes, such as when Tony Stark offers Steve Rogers blueberries in 2012's The Avengers, or when he goes around offering food to the Avengers in Endgame.

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