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Avengers Disassembled: A Look at Which Marvel Cinematic Universe Characters Have the Most Alone Screen Time

March 30, 2020
Tony Stark spends a lot of time by himself.

After watching the excellent first trailer for Scarlett Johansson’s standalone Black Widow film, I started thinking about how much solo screen time each Marvel character has had in their Marvel Cinematic Universe film(s). I know it’s a shared universe that’s loaded with dozens of characters, however, I wanted to know which main MCU characters (original Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Ant-Man, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange) have the most quiet (or loud) moments to themselves. I dove into the viewings and started pulling the numbers, and what I found isn’t totally surprising, however, I think it’s neat and will give you something to look at while you’re stuck at home…….alone

A hero on IMDb named ninewheelso has already given us a break down of all the character screen time in the MCU (Reuters fine tuned the data), however, the data doesn’t include the moments when characters are allowed to exist on their own.

What do I mean by “exist on their own?” I looked for moments that focused solely on the characters. Take a look at the clips below for reference. I didn’t include one or two second takes, or conversations between characters that only have one person in the frame. For example, the fun conversation between Loki and Black Widow wasn’t included in The Avengers solo time, despite the fact that when they’re talking, they’re the only person in the frame.

Here are some examples for you.

  1. Scott Lang deals with house arrest in Ant-Man and the Wasp
  2. Tony discovers a new element and shows off his biceps in Iron Man 2
  3. Captain Marvel falls into a Blockbuster Video in Captain Marvel.
  4. Spider-Man is stuck in a warehouse in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
  5. Thor has a weird ride in Thor: Ragnarok.
  6. Captain America puts a hurting on punching bags in The Avengers.
  7. Doctor Strange shaves in Doctor Strange.

The first chart focuses on the minutes of alone time the main characters have in the 23 MCU films.

  1. Iron Man 1-3 – Tony Stark/Iron Man
  2. The Incredible Hulk – Bruce Banner/Hulk
  3. Thor 1-3 – Thor
  4. Captain America 1-3 – Steve Rogers/Captain America
  5. Spider-Man 1-2 – Peter Parker/Spider-Man
  6. Avengers 1-2 – Cap, Iron Man, Hulk, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Thor
  7. Doctor Strange – Dr. Stephen Strange
  8. Black Panther – T’Challa/Black Panther
  9. Ant-Man – Scott Lang/Ant-Man
  10. Ant-Man and the Wasp – Scott Lang/Ant-Man, Hope Pym/Wasp
  11. Captain Marvel – Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel
  12. GotG 1-2 – Starlord, Gamora, Groot, Rocket, Drax, Nebula
  13. Avengers 3-4 (OG Avengers, GotG, Ant-Man, Dr. Strange, Black Panther, Doctor Strange, Spider-Man, Ant-Man, Captain Marvel, Wanda, Vision)
The average is 8 minutes of screen time per movie

The next chart focuses on non-ensemble films (No Avengers or GotG).

This is how I calculated each main character’s “alone” time. I watched the movies again, counted their solo screen time, then divided it by how much actual screen time they had (Thank you IMDb). Here’s an example:

Captain America has only 90 seconds of alone time during his 38 minutes of Captain America: Civil War screen time. So, that means he’s only alone for 3.95% of his screen time in Civil War.

Here’s another example. Tony Stark/Iron Man has 16 minutes and 25 seconds of alone time during his 77 minutes of Iron Man screen time. So, he’s alone on screen for 21.31% of his screen time in Iron Man

The average is 13.6% per movie
Quick note: I only included Ant-Man’s alone time for Ant-Man and the Wasp.

The next chart looks at the percentage of screen time of the major players in the MCU. Here are the characters and the movies they appeared in (that I counted).

  1. Captain America – (Captain America 1-3, Avengers 1-4)
  2. Iron Man – (Iron Man 1-3, Avengers 1-4, Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man: Homecoming)
  3. Thor – (Thor 1-3, Avengers 1-4)
  4. Black Widow – (Iron Man 2, Avengers 1-4, Captain America 2-3)
  5. Hawkeye – (Thor, Avengers 1, 2, 4, Captain America: Civil War)
  6. Hulk – (The Incredible Hulk, Avengers 1-4, Thor: Ragnarok)
  7. Ant-Man – (Ant-Man 1 & 2, Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: Endgame)
  8. Spider-Man – (Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man 1 & 2, Avengers 3 & 4)
  9. Captain Marvel – (Captain Marvel, Avengers: Endgame)
  10. Black Panther – (Captain America: Civil War, Black Panther, Avengers 3 & 4)
  11. Wanda – (Avengers 3 & 4, Captain America: Civil War)
  12. Doctor Strange – (Dr. Strange, Thor: Ragnarok, Avengers 3 & 4)
  13. Groot – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)
  14. Gamora – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)
  15. Starlord – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)
  16. Drax – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)
  17. Rocket – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)
  18. Nebula – (GotG 1 & 2, Avengers 3-4)

I really hope there is an eventual Luis spin-off so I can include them in these charts.

How I came up with the percentages – Captain America has had 204 minutes of screen time in Captain America 1-3 and Avengers 1-4. In those 204 minutes he has 15.45 minutes of alone time. So, 15.45 divided by 204 = 6.28% of solo time. Basically, he’s alone for only 6.28% of his total screen time.

The average is 7.35% per character

This chart showcases the overall minutes alone for each major MCU character.

The average is 10.4 minutes of alone time per character

One last chart! I thought it would be fun to see their percentage of alone screen time when compared to the movies running time (without credits). So, alone screen time divided by the movies running time (without credits).

Next life changing question – Does the amount of alone screen time have an effect on Box Office or Tomatometer scores?

Tomatometer Averages

  • Minutes and Tomatometer average
  • 0-5 minutes – 83.7%
  • 5-10 minutes – 84.6%
  • 10+ minutes – 85.8% – More alone screen time equals a slightly higher average. Iron Man, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Avengers: Endgame can be thanked for this.
  • Percentage of Time and Tomatometer average
  • 0% – 10% – 86%
  • 10% – 20% – 79.6%
  • 20%+ – 87%

Domestic Box Office

  • Alone Minutes and Domestic Box Office
  • 0-5 minutes – $411 million
  • 5 – 10 minutes – $362 million
  • 10+ minutes – $421 million
  • Percentage of Alone Time and Domestic Box Office
  • 0% – 10% – $349 million
  • 10% – 20% – $321 million
  • 20%+ – $357 million

Lesson Learned – MCU movies, on average, make more money and have higher Tomatometer averages when the characters have more alone screen time.

Conclusion:

MCU Character with the Most alone screen time – Tony Stark/Iron Man (53.8 minutes) – It makes sense considering he’s been in the most films and doesn’t have a group of a-holes to hang out with.

MCU Movie with the most alone time Spider-Man: Homecoming (20.5 minutes and 26.97% of all Peter Parker/Spider-Man’s screen time) – Tom Holland is a super likable actor, and the movie gave him plenty of opportunities to be alone. Check out the scenes here, here and here.

MCU Character with the highest percentage of alone timeDoctor Strange (16.90%) – He’s only appeared in four films, however, his percentage of alone time trumps all. It makes sense, Benedict Cumberbatch is an excellent actor, and Doctor Strange is about him finding his way after an accident. His personal journey from jerky surgeon to Sorcerer Supreme provides lots of time to be alone.

If you like this random data, make sure to check out my other data posts! Also, check out the Movies, Films and Flix podcast, we just started a new series called Final Fights, it’s about epic final fights in movies. Listen wherever you listen to podcasts.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. March 31, 2020 2:01 pm

    Reblogged this on Overly Devoted Archivist and commented:
    This. This is just the sort of thing I love.

    • March 31, 2020 2:17 pm

      Thanks! It makes me happy that you like the data. I love doing these kind of posts.

      • March 31, 2020 2:48 pm

        Yeah, I love looking at statistics and charts! Which is weird because I’m completely dyscalculic otherwise!

  2. April 1, 2020 10:26 am

    This was interesting! Charted and all.

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