‘Hawkeye’ Director on How That LARP Scene Mirrors Jeremy Renner’s Interaction With Marvel Fans

Yes, those were actual LARPers too, says Rhys Thomas

(This story contains spoilers from the first two episodes of Disney+’s “Hawkey”)

“Hawkeye” director Rhys Thomas apparently loves putting Clint Barton in hilariously uncomfortable situations. In the second episode, “Hide and Seek” that included forcing the retired Avenger to seek out a LARP (live action role play) group and, ultimately, be forced to participate.

When a firefighter named Grills takes Clint’s Ronin suit after Kate Bishop’s (Hailee Steinfeld) apartment is attacked by the Tracksuit Mafia, Clint tracks him down to recover the suit. Grills only gives up his “ninja suit” once Clint lets him “defeat” him in a trial by combat during the game.

Thomas explained the scene was done to mirror Renner’s real-life interactions with Marvel fans.

“Jeremy had spoken of his relationship with the fans. And he’s seen how passionately people treat these things. So the idea of acknowledging that was actually something that sort of came from Jeremy,” Thomas told TheWrap. “It was also another aspect of like, what’s a really sort of a less expected way, and also kind of a weirdly low stakes way for Clint to have to go and pursue this suit. I think that’s what’s fun about Kevin [Feige] and the team is that they’re just always interested in kind of taking these left turns and figuring out sort of different routes to these things. So yeah, it was kind of a silly thing.”

And if you’re wondering, yes, that was an actual LARP group that Hawkeye had to play with. “We had actual LARPers present, including quite honest my assistant on the show, Molly. She was like my consultant in figuring that out,” Thomas continued.

It’s not the first time “Hawkeye” has put Clint in a situation that forced him to roll his eyes. “Hawkeye” first meets Clint as he’s seeing Rogers: The Musical, a Broadway version of The Avengers’ heroics, including an extremely inaccurate retelling of The Battle of New York.

“It was all about landing this kind of absurd moment. To me, it was just a funny way to meet Clint,” Thomas said. “It came from an idea of just like, where would be the last place he’d want to be?”