avengers infinity war deaths

Reports of major Avengers: Infinity War deaths may not have been greatly exaggerated after all.

Marvel stars have remained tight-lipped on whether our favorite Marvel Cinematic Universe characters will bite the dust, but Infinity War directors Joe and Anthony Russo have just hinted that the comic book movie will have a considerable body count.

Infinity War is the penultimate MCU movie — a climax which 18 movies have been building up to. So there’s no question that a few of our most beloved Marvel heroes may not make it through this battle. Right?

Maybe, the Russo brothers told /Film during our visit to the set of Avengers: Infinity War. In response to the question of whether any major characters would die in this movie, they said:

Anthony Russo: You asked for it.

Joe Russo: I’m sorry.

Okay, play it coy. We know what that means.

That non-answer is a pretty heavy hint that, once the dust settles, the Avengers will see major casualties in their apocalyptic fight against Thanos. We don’t know which Avengers (or ex-Avengers) they will be for now, though some popular theories have singled out Robert Downey Jr.‘s Tony Stark and Paul Bettany‘s Vision.

The directing duo may have refused to give us more than a vague confirmation that some people will die, but Anthony Russo assured that these deaths will serve an important purpose in the story.

“We’ll say this. We like mature storytelling. 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.”

Russo’s comments address the frequent criticism against Marvel’s history of shockingly low stakes — aka the movies’ tendencies to bring back popular characters from the dead. It began when Phil Coulson died dramatically in 2012’s The Avengers, galvanizing the team into action, only to get his own spin-off show. Resurrections have become so frequent that they’re almost a joke: Nick Fury, Loki, Bucky, and Groot are just a few.

But Infinity War and Avengers 4 promises to be a game-changing climax that will change the landscape of the MCU as we know it. Death comes with that territory.

Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers unite to battle their most powerful enemy yet — the evil Thanos. On a mission to collect all six Infinity Stones, Thanos plans to use the artifacts to inflict his twisted will on reality. The fate of the planet and existence itself has never been more uncertain as everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment.

Avengers: Infinity War is set to hit theaters on April 27, 2018.

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