Avengers: Endgame was originally going to involve Captain America being beheaded. I wish I was joking but, no, writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely revealed as much during the writers' Endgame SDCC 2019 panel. If you thought Thanos was the Biggest Bad before, just wait until you see what the writers had cooked up for him thanks to the magic of time travel.
According to Markus and McFeely (and a hearty hat tip to our Total Film colleagues who were at the event to overhear everything being said), the idea, which obviously didn't make it past the planning stages, sees Thanos somehow make his way back to 2014 and literally behead Captain America. Somehow - I'm guessing these guys skipped Time Travel 101 class - the Mad Titan would have taken Cap's head as a trophy and paraded in front of Steve Rogers in the MCU present-day of 2023. Talk about losing your head.
As the pair explain it: "In one [version], Thanos... went down to his present-day Earth and wiped it out - and killed the Avengers. And then, put on the timeline, he would work through with the Avenger he had killed."
Yes, that is absolutely bonkers. America's Ass instead nearly became our own personal nightmare fuel from now until the heat death of the universe. It's just one of several ideas left on the cutting room floor, including a scrapped Thor vs. Thor fight. There's still a laundry list of Avengers: Endgame deleted scenes to pore over, however, if you're eager to see what didn't make the (sorry for the pun) cut.
The beheading idea, of course, didn't seem to lose its lustre. Thanos himself was on the receiving end of Thor, finally, aiming for the head and separating Thanos' noggin from the rest of his body.
For more (hopefully less gruesome) stories, be sure to brush up on the San Diego Comic Con 2019 schedule. Don't forget to check out every single one of the San Diego Comic Con 2019 trailers currently available, too.