Marvel's biggest film to date,
Avengers: Infinity War, is almost here. The movie is not only the 19th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the culmination of everything the franchise has produced up to this point, it's also expected to alter the MCU in some big ways. How big, you ask? Well, it's almost a guarantee that some beloved characters will meet their end in the movie, but who will die in ? The film's spoilers are heavily guarded secrets, but that doesn't mean fans aren't coming up with their own theories on the matter. Avengers: Infinity War
Before discussing who might die, though, it probably makes sense to discuss who definitely
won't die. The safest character is probably Spider-Man, since he's not really Marvel's to kill. Spidey's movie rights still belong to Sony, who co-produce his solo movies with Marvel Studios, and the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming is already scheduled for July 5, 2019. Nipping at Spidey's heels is Black Panther, who just headlined the highest-grossing superhero film in U.S. history. The hero is a money machine for Marvel, and will likely be the face of the franchise beginning in Marvel's Phase Four. Other safe heroes should include Doctor Strange and Ant-Man (if he even appears in the film), since they head their own nascent franchises and haven't had a chance to thrive yet. Also, hits theaters just a few months after Ant-Man in the Wasp Infinity War, so Ant-Man is definitely not going anywhere. Then there's Star-Lord and most of the other Guardians of the Galaxy. Since it's already been revealed that there will be a Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3 in Phase Four, most of them — but especially their leader — are probably safe.
So with the likely survivors out of the way, it's now time to talk about the characters who may not be so lucky.
Cap's days in the MCU are numbered, that much is clear. Chris Evans recently told the
New York Times he won't be back after , but that doesn't necessarily mean he won't actually be killed off in Avengers 4 Infinity War and only appear in flashbacks or in a time travel situation in the next film.
The face of the franchise for the first three phases, the time has come for Tony Stark to move on. Robert Downey Jr. is 53 years old, and there hasn't been a solo Iron Man movie since
Iron Man 3 five years ago. Infinity War could definitely be his swan song.
The android Avenger is likely in big trouble in
Infinity War, since he has an Infinity Stone embedded in his forehead. Thanos is out to collect all the stones in the film, and if he obtains Vision's, it will likely kill the Avenger.
Like the other OG Avengers,
Chris Hemsworth's contract is up after Avengers 4, according to USA Today, but he's seemed more open to returning to the franchise compared to Evans and Downey. Thor: Ragnarok definitely reinvigorated the Thor franchise, but no Marvel solo series has yet to go beyond three films, seemingly making the God of Thunder expendable.
Thor's brother could also be on his way out. He has an Infinity Stone, which he stole from Odin's vault in
Ragnarok, and will likely be confronted by Thanos at the start of Infinity War (that was Thanos' ship that encountered Thor and company at the end of Ragnarok). He has a history with Thanos, and it's entirely possible he doesn't survive his next run-in with the Mad Titan.
Nebula is one of Thanos' adopted daughters (his least-favorite), and is currently out for revenge against him. Given that Thanos is considerably more powerful than she is, that may not work out so well for her.
The Archer Avenger is not even confirmed to appear in
Infinity War, but if he does show up, he may not last long. The character has always been the least popular of the original six, and killing him off could raise the stakes without angering too many fans.
The only female among the original six Avengers, Black Widow is probably safe. She
finally has her own movie in development, and killing her off beforehand wouldn't make much sense. However, she has no superpowers and will be more overmatched in Infinity War than ever before, and after playing the character for nearly a decade, Scarlett Johansson may feel it's time to move on.
Avengers don't get more expendable than War Machine. He almost died in
Civil War, and has never really functioned as a character on his own — we know little about him outside of his interactions with his buddy Stark. With more Iron Man films unlikely, it's quite possible the increasingly-crowded MCU has no room left for Rhodes.
With a large-scale
invasion taking place in Wakanda during Infinity War, it seems highly-likely that someone from that nation will perish defending their homeland. T'Challa, Shuri, and Okoye are all too important to the Black Panther franchise to perish, but M'Baku? He already had a complete redemption arc in Black Panther, so seeing him bite the dust in Infinity War would make sense.
The Avengers don't have many female heroes, so like Black Widow, she's probably safe. The one thing that could endanger her, however, is her connection with Vision. It's possible that Wanda dies trying to defend her Android boyfriend from Thanos, because as powerful as she is, she's no match for the most powerful being in the galaxy.
Drax, like Nebula, has it out for Thanos. He blames him for the death of his wife and daughter, and that rage could lead him to confront Thanos like he did Ronan in the first Guardians movie. That confrontation with the Kree radical nearly killed him, so Drax surely wouldn't survive a one-on-one fight with Thanos.
Idris Elba has made no secret of his
disdain for appearing in Marvel movies, so he'd probably welcome his character's death. And since he's on the ship full of Asgardians that Thanos encounters at the start of Infinity War, there's never been a more likely time for Heimdall to head to Valhalla.
Like Vision and Loki, The Collector has (as far as we know) an Infinity Stone. Thanos is going to come for it, and it's probably not going to end well for Taneleer Tivan.
Gamora is arguably the second most important member of the Guardians after Star-Lord, so she's probably not going anywhere. Still, she is an adopted daughter of Thanos, and that connection could make her a target.
Hulk may not be eligible for a solo franchise (
the character apparently has rights issues), and that may make him an unnecessary expense in Marvel's eyes. He's been relegated to supporting duty in Avengers films and, most recently, in Thor: Ragnarok, but with those franchises either ending or changing massively, there may not be room for Hulk in the future MCU.
Cap's friend is a strong nominee to take up the shield if Cap goes down, but it's not clear if Sam Wilson is popular enough to carry a franchise on his own, and that could put him in danger.
The other nominee to become the new Cap in case Steve Rogers is killed (both
Bucky and Falcon have taken up the shield in the comics), Bucky certainly has a strong fanbase. He's also on the tail end of a redemption arc, though, and that could make him a prime target for a death that would leave fans reeling.
Is Nick Fury even in
Infinity War? That's unknown for now, but his voice was featured in the first trailer. He hasn't popped up in a Marvel film since 2014's Captain America: The Winter Soldier, where he faked his own death, but the arrival of Thanos could bring him back to the land of the living — though it may be a short stay given how the MCU has gotten along just fine in his absence. He is confirmed to appear in next year's , but since that film takes place in the '90s, that doesn't mean he'll survive Captain Marvel Infinity War.
As you can see, there are cases to be made for numerous character deaths in
Infinity War. And while it's hard to say which characters might die, it's virtually assured that at least some of the heroes above will meet their end in the film.