I know there’s a ton of comic books with Thanos and the infinity gems, but were there any particular ones that were influential to you guys while making this?

Joe Russo: Certainly the Starlin book was our jumping off point. It’s a brilliant comic, and the ideas behind it are so large, it’s what pushed us to go for the scale that we’re going for on these movies. But we also draw from … Anthony and I love the postmodern comics, so we’re also drawing from newer stuff, and we’re kind of combining it all into, again, what’s our favorite stuff and how do we see elements from each helping our story and the story that we want to tell.

You talked a little bit about timeline and how this film is very based on what happened at the end of Civil War, but this film takes place, by my count, five, six years after Guardians 2. Because Guardians 2 is set right after Guardians 1. So how have the Guardians changed when we come to them here, because they’ve now been a team for a long time, Groot must be … bigger. Right?

Anthony Russo: There are some changes-

Joe Russo: Groot has grown.

Anthony Russo: But I think changes are about chemistry and about camaraderie and the fact that they’re closer, and they’re tighter, and they’ve been doing it for a while. That’s, if there’s any change, it’s in that when they may or may not intersect with the Avengers in this movie, they have cemented their chemistry as a team-

Joe Russo: The relationships have deepened.

Anthony Russo: And they would stand in contrast with the other teams. Potentially.

You mentioned that you guys read a bunch of the scripts for the other Marvel movies. Is there one before Infinity War that has the biggest lead-in that we can be expecting?

Joe Russo: They all lead in in their own way, I think. As far as plot elements that actually drive towards the story, again, I think Marvel does a great job of segmenting the movies so that you can have your own experience in each film. I think from a plot standpoint, if there’s any corollary, Ant-Man 2 probably has some elements that stitch in.

Anthony Russo: But we can’t talk about that.

Who would you say has the best costume in this movie?

Joe Russo: Is it …? Where’s Pisani? I can’t remember if we – Captain Marvel on set, is that official? If it’s not, it’s official now. I think Captain Marvel had a great outfit.

She has a mailbox that we saw earlier. 

Joe Russo: I just don’t need my phone filling up with 42 text messages-

[This interview took place months before Comic-Con, where the Russos said that Captain Marvel does not appear in Infinity War. Disney says that things change during production, so don’t take the above comments as a confirmation of an appearance, as things may have changed.]

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You guys introduced Black Panther before his movie was signed, Captain Marvel before her movie. What is the different approach between those two characters, how do guys you go about that and have you met with the director-

Joe Russo: Again, just how we feel about those characters and how we want their expression to be and then when the next writer, if I’m using this analogy between comic books, [the] director picks it up, they pick it up where they want to pick it up, and they take it where they want to go with it. I haven’t seen a lot of blowback from the way that people reach out, I think people get excited. I mean look at the fucking views for the Ragnarok trailer. Taika’s point of view is really clear in that movie, and people went crazy. I don’t think you’re looking at it going “Jeez, that’s not a hand off from the Dark World tone, or from the first Thor tone,” I think you’re responding to the fact that it’s a reinvention of it.

Can you talk about the Infinity Stones? At one point these objects were just passed from one person to another, but now they’re very personal; there’s on from Vision, there’s one from Doctor Strange. How does that come into play?

Joe Russo: In a very complicated manner. I think that traditionally in movies there’s a MacGuffin, sometimes the MacGuffin is a person, sometimes it’s a thing. I tend to find that it’s much more emotional when a person is involved. So we have quite a few Macguffins in this movie that have different relationships with two different people; Doctor Strange is a bearer of an Infinity Stone, he has been charged with protecting that Infinity Stone. So there are a lot of characters that will come into direct conflict with Thanos.

How much would you say the stones serve the structure of this movie? Thanos getting all the stones, how much does that-

Anthony Russo: It’s very important to the structure of-

Joe Russo: It’s the bedrock of the film. A key driver of the film.

One of the key criticisms of the MCU is the fact that we love these characters, but they’re becoming increasingly invincible because nobody wants to kill any of them off. Are any major characters going to die in this movie? 

Anthony Russo: You asked for it.

Joe Russo: I’m sorry.

Anthony Russo: 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.

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