Wacky things that happened on Marvel movie sets

Marvel made the superheroes plus comedy combo a thing, which is one of the reasons why we can really get invested in ridiculous stories about purple scrotum-chinned bad guys, talking raccoons, and flying ladies with flaming mohawks. In fact weirdness in general just seems to permeate the whole Marvel movie-making process, both on camera and off.

Most of us aren't lucky enough to witness the movie-making process first hand. In fact, a lot of the stars of Marvel movies aren't allowed to witness most of the movie-making process first hand, either, because they can't be trusted with spoilers. So we have to wait until those stories come out in interviews with the cast and crew, or in blooper footage, or when Tom Holland accidentally says something he isn't supposed to say. Or, in an article like this one, which is surely only a taste of all the wacky and wonderful behind-the-scenes nonsense that Marvel stars get up to.

The cast of Infinity War made a music video you will never see

Avengers: Infinity War crushed our hearts and made us stop believing in joy, redemption, and the power of love. That's a pretty heavy burden, and it's not surprising that the actors felt like they needed to occasionally blow off some steam. So in their down time, they made a music video.

Now before you get excited, you won't be able to actually see this music video because everyone decided it was too embarrassing to ever see the light of day. So if it even exists anymore, it's probably only as a pile of ash in a large metal bucket somewhere on a back lot at Disney studios.

According to Radio Times, Anthony Mackie (The Falcon) told this story at MCM London Comic-Con in 2017. "We had this idea of making a music video," he said. "And we shot half of it, and then people realized how bad they were at dancing, and we couldn't get anyone else to dance."

But what's extra-super tragic about this story is that Mackie specifically called out one cast member as being an especially terrible dancer. "Mark Ruffalo dancing is a spectacle that everyone should behold once in their life. Once! You never wanna see it twice. … Mark Ruffalo, with polka dots and a skintight suit on, dancing. Awful."

We won't ever get to see it though, so thanks to Anthony for letting us know exactly what we're missing.

Anthony Mackie liked to prank Paul Rudd. A lot.

Pranking was evidently something that happened a lot on Marvel sets, and Anthony Mackie was behind a lot of it. In fact he told the crowd at MCM London Comic-Con that to relieve stress, he used to go down to the set of Ant-Man (which was filming down the street from Infinity War) specifically to torture Paul Rudd. "I just go and bully Paul Rudd for an hour and then come back to set. Everyone just feels better about themselves."

In fairness, though, it sounds like Rudd made himself a bit of a target just by being so good-natured. Other actors proved to be less vulnerable to Mackie's antics, though he did seem to get at least one decent shot at Tom Holland.

"I almost pushed Tom Holland in a lake," Mackie said. "But then he got so angry he almost jumped in the lake trying to push me in the lake. Which made it SO much better."

"I would prank Paul Rudd every day of the week," Mackie continued. "It's so easy man, he's an easy target. Tom [Holland] is always watching his six. He's always nervous. He knows something going down. But Paul is just happy, he's like lalalalala. So he's easy to get."

Dave Bautista improvised the "Why is Gamora" line

One of the funniest moments in Infinity War is during that tense first meeting between the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy, when Star Lord confronts Tony Stark with the words, "Where is Gamora?" and Stark comes back with, "I'll do you one better: Who is Gamora?" and then Drax makes everything right with his line, "I'll do you one better: Why is Gamora?"

But that line wasn't in the script. According to CBR, Dave Bautista just improvised the line one day during filming. "It's like, 'Okay, you're very good at your job," screenwriter Christopher Markus told Yahoo.

Bautista wasn't the only Avengers actor who was awesome at improvisation — Tom Holland also improvised the now-legendary last words of Spider-Man as he disintegrated in the arms of Tony Stark. "I don't want to go" was Holland's own contribution to the scene, and it's part of what made the final moments of Infinity War so heartbreaking.

The blooper reel for Age of Ultron is full of delightful scenes of our favorite superheroes kissing each other

There was loads of fun to be had on the set of Avengers: Age of Ultron. On the blooper reel that came out just prior to the release of the Blu-ray and DVD, you can watch your favorite superheroes getting kind of friendly with each other, and we don't mean sitting down for a beer and chatting about Game of Thrones. On the blooper reel, Captain America can be seen leaning in for a kiss from Tony Stark, and Thor and The Vision can be seen in an all-out, swept-him-off-his feet, wind-blowing-in-his-cape romantic embrace slash kiss. In front of a green screen.

People love that stuff because it tells us that whatever relationship those characters have on screen, the actors have got a pretty great working relationship off screen. Director Joss Whedon once famously said that the cast got along too well, since he had actually been counting on a little on-set friction so he could turn it into some real on-screen drama. "I was like, well, if they hate each other, I guess we can use that," he told Entertainment Weekly. "But they don't."

Someone on the set of Spider-Man: Homecoming made Tom Holland a set chair out of a toilet

Despite what Anthony Mackie might have said about him ("He's a phenomenal actor, he's an amazing Spider-Man … but he's an a**hole. I mean, this dude is awful.') Tom Holland seems to actually be a sweet guy, and he also seems to have a very good sense of humor. He did send the world's most awesome Instagram post from the set of Spider-Man: Homecoming: a photograph of three set chairs, one of which had Peter Parker's name on it and was also a toilet.

"Loving my new set chair," Holland wrote. "Thanks guys. Should you really be treating number one like number two."

The good news is that the chair was probably made from a prop toilet, which is less gross than a toilet that came out of someone's trailer or something, although a trailer toilet would have been a nice double-sided practical joke on whoever ended up missing a toilet at the end of the day. Still, all superheroes could do with some occasional humbling, even the web-slinger.

Brie Larson was deathly allergic to Goose

One of the surprise stars in Captain Marvel was the cat who played Goose. (There were four cats who played Goose, but to keep it simple we'll just talk about one of them, Reggie.) Obviously, Reggie should have been the most highly paid actor in the whole film because of the fluffy adorableness and also the weird tentacle explosion thingy, but that's a debate for another time. What's especially noteworthy about Reggie's presence on set was the fact that Brie Larson is deathly allergic to cats.

"It was like the joke on set because I could do really crazy things stunt-wise," Larson told USA Today. "But the cat was a big obstacle for me. It's weird how you can train and get your body to do insane things but allergies are kind of a hard stop. That's where your body's like, 'That's it.'"

To compensate, the crew had to take special measures whenever Larson and Reggie were in the same scene. Larson's allergies were actually bad enough that they would sometimes use a fake cat as a Reggie stand-in, but if the scene required her to touch the cat, they'd have someone on hand to immediately wipe down her hands afterward. And Reggie would get booted off the set altogether if he wasn't needed for filming, which is just further evidence that the poor creature was pitifully underappreciated, and probably underpaid, too.

There were so many trailers brought in for Infinity War that Paul Bettany thought he'd wandered into a small town

There was a ton of secrecy surrounding Infinity War — so much of it, in fact, that most of the actors had no idea who their co-stars were going to be. In an interview with E!, Anthony Mackie (The Falcon) said he didn't know that Winston Duke (M'Baku) was part of the cast until both actors ran into each other on their way to Atlanta, where most of the principal photography took place.

In an interview, Paul Bettany (Vision) said while he was working on Infinity War in an undisclosed location, he was so surprised by the number of trailers that he thought he'd accidentally wandered into a small town. "I woke up, and I knew we were shooting in the middle of nowhere," he said. "We were shooting an outdoors scene, and we started to descend down into this valley. There's this f*cking town, and I was like, 'Where the f*ck is this?' I got my phone out and there was nothing there, and that's when I realized there were no buildings, it was all trailers. I've been making movies for 20 years and I've never seen anything that big or bonkers in my life."

Tim Story told Jessica Alba she wasn't crying pretty enough

We're a long way from a world where sexism stays the hell out of our entertainment, even in superhero films that are supposedly about strong women with amazing abilities. This one's a little less laugh-wacky and a little more how-is-this-really-still-happening kind of wacky. According to CBR, Jessica Alba was so shaken by her experience playing invisible woman Sue Storm in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, that she nearly gave up acting. And it wasn't because she had trouble getting into character or because she didn't like the script — it was because Tim Story, the director, was kind of, um, let's say "given to 1950s ideas about female movie stars."

While filming a sequence where Sue Storm was supposed to cry, Story told Alba that her performance was "too real."

"'Can you be prettier when you cry?'" Alba recalled in an interview with Elle Magazine. "'Cry pretty, Jessica.' He was like, 'Don't do that thing with your face. Just make it flat. We can CGI the tears in.'"

After the experience, Alba said she started to question herself and her acting abilities. "Am I not good enough? Are my instincts and my emotions not good enough? Do people hate them so much that they don't want me to be a person? Am I not allowed to be a person in my work? And so I just said, "F*ck it. I don't care about this business anymore."

Fortunately, Alba shook it off and continued to work in Hollywood, so good for her.

Chris Evans messed up his arm hanging on to that helicopter

In Captain America: Civil War, there's that iconic scene where Chris Evans grabs the landing skid of a departing helicopter, thus permitting the world to behold a set of biceps that could only be the product of a CGI genius. Except Mashable says they were actually 100 percent real, so let's all just slow down and take some deep breaths and fan ourselves.

Real or not real, that crazy bicep-showcasing stunt ended up injuring Chris Evans. "This is a shot where Cap is holding this big [helicopter]," co-star Robert Downey Jr. said in a joint interview with Evans and People. "And I say, 'You know what? All the things he's done, that's the one that was going to injure him … they're saying, 'Flex and hold it!' It wasn't the other 3,000 stunts, it was that."

In the film, Captain America and Iron Man weren't exactly pals, but in real life RDJ took it upon himself to act as Evans' nursemaid. "I went to [Downey's] trailer and he put these things all over my arm." The "things," evidently, were the components of a pulse massager.

"[The arm] is still a mess, actually," Evans said in the interview. "I need your thing more."

"I've got it ready for you," Downey replied. Aw, bromance.

Baby Groot was so cute he made Chris Pratt jealous

Working with CGI co-stars is harder than it looks. For a start, you've got to pretend that dude wearing a bright green polka-dotted suit who's crawling around on all fours is not hilarious and is also a talking raccoon. In some cases, you even have to pretend to be talking to someone who's there when in fact no one is actually there. That's why for smaller CGI characters like Baby Groot, filmmakers will create stand-ins so the actors have something to talk to, even if it doesn't happen to be a living something.

"We had a statue of little Groot," director James Gunn said at a press event. "We just had this adorable little statue standing there, and we'd get in this scene and all this stuff would be going on and [the cast] would be acting their butts off, and really putting [in] their hearts and souls. All of a sudden Chris [Pratt] would look over at [Baby Groot] and go, 'Damn it, he's gonna steal the whole movie!"

In fact the tension between Pratt and Baby Groot perhaps even crossed the line into jealousy. "I'd say, 'Let's get a shot over here cuz I think Groot's going to be trying to get a bug while this scene is happening," Gunn said. "And [Pratt is] like, 'Really, Groot's going to be trying to get a bug while I'm crying about my father?" Out-cuted by a sapling.