Director Joss Whedon recently spoke with Ain’t It Cool News about a one of the issues he had with editing his own work in The Avengers; the amount that Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) graced the big screen. One of the biggest bridges between the Captain America film and The Avengers is the Stark family link that exists between Tony’s father, Howard, who admired Steve Rodgers a great deal during WWII, and Tony, who butts heads with the Captain for much of The Avengers story.
Whedon explains that he had originally planned an additional scene to be included in The Avengers that would have touched on this contrast between the two Starks and Steve Rodgers, but ultimately, he decided to leave it out due to his not wanting to make the film more about Tony Stark than any of the other team members on screen.
Whedon hard the following to say in regards to the cut scene.
There was a ton more. One of the problems we had early on was that I had way more Iron Man, and at some point I realized “This is turning into IRON MAN 3. That’s a mistake for them, that’s a mistake for me, and it’s putting too much responsibility on Robert’s shoulders. He needs to be the rock star who shows up and says ‘Oh, let me handle this, because I’m a rock star.’” That felt very right. But I had written endless scads of pages of him and Steve Rogers arguing, and a lot of it was about [Howard Stark]. Not so much, because his daddy issues had been the thing in the second movie, but enough because of that relationship. Actually the only time Chris and Robert were in the Quinjet, I had a little run about the father, and on the day they were like “We’re not so comfortable with this.” I went “Okay, let’s pull it,” so there’s really just the one comment. But I feel like you don’t necessarily need to say it. It’s there. I mean, Chris is such a father figure as Steve Rogers – even though he’s young and maybe just by virtue of the fact that he is a beautiful fuddy-duddy. Their relationship I think resonates without having to call it back too much. And when he says “And every time I would think ‘You know, your father would never say that’”, I wanted Tony to say “My Dominic Cooper father or my John Slattery father? Because they were very different guys.”
Directed by Joss Whedon, The Avengers assembles in theaters on May 4, 2012 and stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo and Cobie Smulders.