CATEGORIES Movies
avengers rated r
WARNING: This post contains SPOILERS about "The Avengers." If you haven't seen the movie yet, read on at your own risk.

While Robert Downey Jr. quipping about shwarma doesn't exactly scream "R rating," it turns out that an early cut of "The Avengers" -- and one gruesome scene in particular -- had to be significantly edited to earn a PG-13 rating from the Motion Picture Association of America.

In an interview with Movies.com promoting "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," Marvel studio chief Kevin Feige said that while that sequel had no problem getting its PG-13 credentials from the MPAA, 2012's "The Avengers" was a different story.

"When we submitted 'The Avengers,' the first couple cuts of it came back from the MPAA rated R. That happened twice," Feige said. "So we went back and had to make adjustments."

The scene in question? Agent Coulson's death.

"Well, whenever you impale somebody from their back and the blade comes out their chest, there are issues," Feige told the site.

Obviously, the final cut doesn't include a shot of the act itself, though its sound effects are present. Movies.com reports that "an earlier cut was a tad more gruesome," and was edited to appease the MPAA.

As for the Coulson character (played by Clark Gregg), who was miraculously revived for ABC's "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," Movies.com asked Feige if Coulson was planning on making a similarly surprising return for "Avengers: Age of Ultron" next year. Feige played it coy.

"That is a good question that I probably shouldn't answer for any number of reasons," he said.