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The Avengers was one gruesome death scene away from losing its PG-13 rating.
Kevin Feige, who produced the film and is largely responsible for the entire franchise as Marvel's President of Production, told Movies.com that Loki's (Tom Hiddleston) stabbing of S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson caused some difficulty with the Motion Picture Association of America. "Whenever you impale somebody from their back and the blade comes out their chest, there are issues," Feige said.
Much of the destruction in the 2012 blockbuster was harmless action, often played for humor.
Phil Coulson's death at the hands of the Norse god, on the other hand, was an intimate performance by actor Clark Gregg. His death was a turning point of the film, motivating the team of superheroes and master assassins into action and teaching them the value of teamwork.
Of course, Coulson eventually returned from the grave to lead a spinoff TV series on ABC, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..
Feige has been busy recently with the rising anticipation for Avengers tie-in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, due April 4. It was recently announced that the third Captain America movie will be premiering against DC Comics' Man of Steel sequel.
Wednesday, Feige told the Huffington Post that films based on Doctor Strange and The Inhumans are in the works, while denying rumors that the Inhumans are tied to The Avengers: Age of Ultron characters Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver.