The upcoming Hawkeye show on Disney+ is even more important than you might realise.

Not only will it finally give Clint Barton a chance to bow *ahem* out in the spotlight, but the introduction of his protege Kate Bishop could also help set up the Young Avengers, bringing some much-needed diversity to the MCU.

Unfortunately, it looks like some trouble behind the scenes could achieve what Thanos failed to do and stop Hawkeye dead in his tracks.

Soon after Jeremy Renner’s official app was shut down thanks to incessant trolling online, the Avengers star also had to face a lawsuit filed by his ex-wife Sonni Pacheco. According to the report she filed, Renner threatened to kill her and himself too.

The Hawkeye actor fired back denying every allegation made, but that hasn’t stopped rumours from circulating which suggest Marvel might replace Renner with someone new for the role.

Whether that’s true or not, a number of fans have voiced their support, pointing out that Marvel actors have been recast before.

Others have campaigned to see a deaf actor replace Renner in the role because Hawkeye is actually deaf in the comics, and they would prefer a more authentic representation of the archer onscreen.

Those who wonder how a Hawkeye show could even continue without Clint should bear in mind that Kate Bishop has already been hugely successful as Hawkeye in the comics.

In theory, it wouldn’t take much to reframe the Disney+ show as a vehicle for Hailee Steinfeld’s take on the character. The story was always supposed to explore how Clint passes down his legacy to Kate anyway, and Steinfeld’s involvement has been all but confirmed.

Or was, at least.

Marvel Comics

For months, discussions surrounding the Hawkeye show have all involved Steinfeld, but in a recent interview, the Dickinson star suggested that she might not appear in the MCU after all.

Speaking to The Radio Times, Steinfeld said: “That’s not something that’s necessarily happening. We’re going to wait and find out, I guess.”

While that “something” could mean the show itself is in danger, it’s more likely that Steinfeld’s role just hasn’t been confirmed yet either way.

Why that might be the case remains a mystery. Although it’s possible Marvel are just biding their time before confirming her role, it’s worth bearing in mind that Steinfeld also has her hands full with Dickinson, which has just been renewed for a second season.

Given how much money Apple are pouring into their original TV slate, it’s easy to see why Steinfeld might be tempted to leave Marvel behind completely — or contract negotiations might just be taking longer than expected.

Either way, it seems likely that Hawkeye will definitely appear on Disney+ regardless. Marvel boss Kevin Feige recently revealed to Bloomberg that what happens in these shows will directly set up future movies, confirming that Hawkeye’s adventures on the small screen might be even more important than we realise too.

What remains to be seen is whether people will actually show up to watch it. Hawkeye isn’t exactly the most popular Avenger, and when you combine the price of yet another streaming service with all the controversy surrounding Renner, don’t be surprised if fans bow out before it even starts airing.

Hawkeye will premiere exclusively on Disney+ in autumn 2021.

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