Russo Bros. tease the ‘pretty bad things’ Thanos does in Infinity War
Ever since the post-credit scene in 2012’s The Avengers, fans have known that Thanos was coming for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As the Infinity Stones were peppered throughout the films of Phase two and three, he continued to appear while mostly being threatening only to the people in front of him, and all while sitting in a chair. In the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War however, he’ll be making his move for power, and he might take down some of your favorites along the way.
Speaking on the set of Infinity War last summer, we asked directors Anthony and Joe Russo about finally making audiences believe in the “big bad-ness” of Thanos for the film and how he’s finally going to get his hands on those pesky stones.
“This movie is catalyzed by Thanos’ decision and an opportunity for him to make a very aggressive move for the stones, a more effective move for the stones than he has ever in the past,” Anthony says. “So when Thanos decides to do it, he really goes for it, and he’s kind of one step ahead of our heroes through the movie and he puts them through a lot of pain in the process of that.”
“Our job with Thanos is to make him the preeminent villain in the Marvel universe,” Joe adds. “That’s his role in the comics, that’s his role in these movies, and in order to be a preeminent villain you have to do some pretty bad things.”
Part of making Thanos such a grand villain in the MCU will have everything to do with how actor Josh Brolin will portray him, having previously only appeared in one scene in 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy and a post-credit scene in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. In Infinity War, you may not be seeing Brolin’s actual face on screen, but thanks to advancements in performance capture you’ll see every vein in Brolin’s face and every twitch of his lip or eye.
“Josh is an amazing actor, obviously. One of the things about Thanos that we’re most excited about is the visual effects technology is always evolving,” Joe says. “As that technology evolves, we are able to bring more and more of what Josh Brolin can do as a performer into the fabric and the texture of what Thanos is in a way that we are extremely excited about, and I know that he is as an actor, our visual effects teams are pretty excited about it. Just figuring out, again, having such a cursory view of the character in the past, it’s almost like now we get to do the flip side of that… It’s a very, very intimate portrayal and performance.”
As for the Infinity Stones themselves, only one is unaccounted for in the MCU, and most of the others have an owner or someone guarding over them, like Doctor Strange who wields the Time Stone and The Vision who has the Mind Stone embedded into his forehead. The directors teased that because of the homes of many of the stones, a lot of characters will come into direct conflict with Thanos over them.
Fans may not be sweating at that threat though, as a common criticism of the MCU has been that many of the characters that die in the films have found ways to return back to life. With Infinity War though? All bets are off. When asked about actually killing characters off in Infinity War, The Russos laugh and Joe says: “I’m Sorry.”
“We’ll say this,” Anthony adds. “We like mature story telling. We like dramatic storytelling. We like intense storytelling. I think we appreciate conflict, and we appreciate stakes. And without stakes, there really isn’t a lot of value to the story. And I think if you look at the Marvel Universe as a whole as a story that’s been told for ten years, you can look at this as the climax. And the stakes will be higher in this movie than they’ve ever been, times ten.”
Marvel‘s Avengers: Infinity War arrives in theaters on April 27.
Check back here on Friday for our interview with stars Chris Evans (Captain America) and Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow) from the set of Avengers: Infinity War!