With Avengers: Endgame now available on home release, fans are once again poring over the movie and its deleted scenes, with the Russo brothers fueling discourse around the movie by teasing fan theories and alternate endings.
And now VFX house Cinesite is getting in on the fun: a demo reel which the company recently dropped on YouTube shows the work that went into creating many of the movie’s fantastical settings and effects. And in one scene in particular, a familiar face shows up. See if you can spot it:
At 0:43, in a “blink and you’ll miss it” moment, the digitized face of Armin Zola (Toby Jones) appears for a second as Tony Stark enters the basement of the S.H.I.E.L.D. facility at Camp Lehigh; the clip then shows that his face was visible all along on the computer screens in the far background of the room.
Zola first appeared in the MCU in Captain America: The First Avenger as a Hydra scientist. In the sequel Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it was revealed that while Zola defected to S.H.I.E.L.D., he was actually a double agent, and used his technological expertise to upload an artificially intelligent version of his consciousness into the computers beneath Camp Lehigh.
Moments later in the scene in Endgame (which takes place amid the movie’s extended Time Heist sequence), Tony’s father Howard Stark enters the basement, looking for Zola. At this point in the timeline, Howard and the rest of S.H.I.E.L.D. believed Zola to be on their side — but the sinister green and black face on the computer display shows that Zola’s nefarious plan was already in motion. It’s a minor detail, but one which connects this final chapter of the Infinity Saga to its beginnings, and enriches the experience of repeated viewings.