Directors Joe and Anthony Russo recall how they were pitched to helm Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. It wasn’t easy creating Marvel Studios’ biggest films to date (earning a combined box office total of almost $5 billion), especially when they were filmed back-to-back. Somehow, the Russos pulled it off, and in a recent interview, they look back at how they were offered the job more than three years ago.
Starting their MCU journey through 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, the Russos quickly made an impression. Teaming up with writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely again two years later in Captain America: Civil War, it became their litmus test whether or not they were the perfect people to wrap up the MCU’s 22-film Infinity Saga. Marvel Studios immediately liked what they did with the third Captain America movie that even before it was fully finished and debuted in theaters, the executives knew already that they want the same foursome to write and direct for Infinity War and Endgame.
During their latest Reddit AMA, Joe and Anthony were asked how they found out that they were tasked to helm Marvel Studios’ culminating films. Apparently, the topmost executives of the company were the ones to deliver the good news. “Kevin, and co-president of Marvel Studios, Louis D’Esposito, asked us to swing by their offices while we were in post on Civil War. The conversation, in short, was, “Guess what. We want to make the two biggest films ever made and we want to shoot them back to back. And we want you guys to direct them.” Our response — “F**K yeah,” they said.
From the sound of it, the Russos agreed to take the job on the spot, even without much context on the kind of work the movies require. It’s no secret that they immediately began cracking the story for Infinity War and Endgame, and their development may have even overlapped with the final stretch if Civil War. Fortunately, there were two of them, paired with two writers to help distribute the load. Once the narrative was locked, principal photography was a different type of beast to tackle on its own. Aside from the pressure of delivering a satisfying conclusion to the Infinity Saga, working on these projects was also a test of stamina since they needed to be present at every step of the films’ creation – from its conception all the way to post release which calls for doing press activities.
It makes sense that Marvel Studios’ pick to direct Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame were already in the MCU sphere already. Had they gone with an franchise-newbie, it doesn’t matter how great their portfolio was, it would still be much riskier since they’ve never handled a production from the franchise, so it’s a little uncertain what to expect from their work. Since the twin sequels were not only about resolving the Thanos (Josh Brolin) debacle, but also rounding up the arcs of the universe’s most beloved heroes, they needed people who already knew these characters well enough to craft their most fitting ends. And while not everyone was pleased with what they did, the general consensus is that they stuck the landing.
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Source: Joe and Anthony Russo