Avengers: Infinity War is only days away form debuting in theaters, and the film's writers aren't about to divulge any of its secrets. But that doesn't mean Steven McFeely and Christopher Markus are remaining completely mum about what went into making Thanos the biggest, baddest and most layered villain the Marvel Cinematic Universe has ever seen.
Speaking with CBR, the screenwriting duo explained exactly what it is that sets the Mad Titan apart from the MCU's previous bad guys, and why Infinity War's big fight scenes took a little bit extra thought to get just right. The pair also explain how Hawkeye's Captain America: Civil War role informed the way the latest Marvel film was put together, the joy in bringing the Guardians of the Galaxy to the Avengers party, and which Marvel hero we're least likely to ever see make the leap from comics to the big screen.
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CBR: One of the things that was really impressive about Civil War was it had so many characters, so many things it had to do -- and this movie, by all accounts, is that times 15? 20? -- yet Civil War retained a true sense of personal stakes that was really the heart of it. How was your approach in Infinity War, in doing that same thing?
Steven McFeely: Oh, we threw that out. [Laughs]
Christopher Markus: It stayed the same. We had to find the personal connection of each hero to the particular facet of the story they were in. Not everybody would relate to every part, as well, which is part of the reason, you'll find, that we sort of separated them into groups, into paths, that go in different places. One, it's more manageable to tell a story with 50 million people if you can break them up into smaller units. But also, not everybody was perfectly suited for each adventure. We only brought them in when the story demanded it, and therefore only brought them in when --
McFeely: Thanos wanted them.
Markus: When their stakes were involved. People seem disconnected when they're in the movie too early.
McFeely: That took a while to figure out. Our inclination was, "What's Steve been up to? Let's show him for 10 minutes, do a whole adventure, and then stuff comes to him." It goes away after a while, because that's a miniseries, not a movie. If you remember Hawkeye in Civil War -- he comes in at a very specific moment. "I'm here to bail her out, and let's get going." It's a little more like that for a lot of our characters. When the story demands it, they show up. You'll find out how they're doing, and what's been going on sort of on the run, but we won't spend five minutes with Rhodey eating ice cream.
As much as we'd all love that.
Markus: Although Cheadle nailed it!