Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige has paid tribute to the influence of veteran writer Jim Starlin on the cosmic superhero mash-up that is Avengers: Infinity War.
Infinity War brings together 10 years of storytelling from Marvel Studios, culminating in Thanos' (Josh Brolin) search for the Infinity Stones. The film's script draws inspiration from the 1991 Infinity Gauntlet arc, written by Starlin and drawn by George Pérez and Ron Lim. Starlin's story there dealt with Thanos aiming to reshape the galaxy by taking out half of its inhabitants, an arc the movie is following. As such, Feige paid tribute to how Starlin laid the foundation for the film at an Infinity War press junket attended by CBR.
"It's the comics that we look at, usually when there is just the notion of, 'Let's do an Iron Man movie,' or, 'Let's have the audacity to try to do a version of the Infinity Gauntlet.' It starts with those comics, and us beginning to rip pages out -- or rip copies of pages out -- put them on the walls, and start to be inspired," Feige said. "In every single movie we've made, up to and especially Infinity War, there are direct images, storylines -- rarely, but sometimes, actual lines of dialogue -- that come from those pages that we've put up around our development room for inspiration. With Infinity War, in particular, when there are so many characters and so many threads of storylines from so many movies that we could have pulled from or could have used as inspiration."
"And we did, we kept going back to -- and I think we've released some behind-the-scenes videos and things, and you can see the giant omnibus of the Infinity Gauntlet there, with all sorts of dog-eared pages and Post-its in there -- from moments, and after everybody sees the movie, we can talk more specifically about what those moments were, most of them were surrounding Mr. Brolin's Thanos portrayal -- that came directly from Jim Starlin's work," Feige said. "It is always a guidepoint, it's a north star for us, as we lead these giant productions into reality, are right from those books and where it all started."
Feige's praise comes at a time when Starlin, who many believe shaped a lot of the cosmic corner of Marvel Comics, isn't on good terms with the publisher. He recently indicated on social media that he had to order copies of his final book with Marvel, Thanos: The Infinity Siblings, to get a look at it, hinting he wasn't sent any from the publisher.
Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Tom Hiddleston, and Josh Brolin. The film arrives April 27.