Jeremy Renner, Paul Rudd, Samuel L. Jackson, Bradley Cooper, Cobie Smolders, Sebastian Stan, Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Don Cheadle, Anthony Mackie, Chadwick Boseman, Brie Larson, Karen Gillan, Zoe Saldana, Tom Holland, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Hiddleston, Paul Bettany, Vin Diesel, Benedict Cumberbatch...
Those are the names on the mailboxes which greet anyone walking into the production office of one of the biggest movies ever made: Avengers: Infinity War.
Certainly, it's not every cast member whose character is going to battle for Marvel Studios' gigantic ensemble flick, but it's how a day on set of what is being deemed as the culmination of the Marvel Cinematic Universe begins.
Only a few steps away is Wakanda, the location of a soon-to-be showdown which could decide the fate of the Earth and all of the universe. A slew of the aforementioned names emerge from the belly of a quinjet, which is built only in its exit's part as the rest will be added digitally, but they're not just the actors anymore; they are Marvel heroes. They are in costume, coming together to try to save the world and deliver an important warning message.
Captain America, James Rhodes (walking on his own), Black Widow, Bruce Banner, Scarlet Witch, and a recently injured Vision make their way down the steps. Banner, more than anyone else, is enamored with their surroundings. Under the warm Georgia sun it's mostly green screens. Before these characters, however, stand the king of Wakanda and his Dora Milaje. It's more than enough to fill in any blanks for imagination, but it will ultimately be surrounded by the rich, vibranium-built African nation which is currently in the midst of getting richer at the box office.
A bearded, grizzled Captain America in a beaten, darkened, star-spangled costumed greets the King.
"What kind of assault should we expect?" isn't the ideal greeting for people who previously met to fight stateside, but it's how T'Challa cuts straight to business with Steve Rogers here.
"Quite an assault, sir," the ever-prestigious Rogers responds.
The moment is quick to rely on long-standing relationships. First, it's the reunion of Rogers and his longtime pal Bucky Barnes, who joins the crowd both late and slowly. The now-White Wolf is referred to as a "100-year-old semi-stable frozen man." There's a warm hug, showing every bit of their friendship, but maintaining the looming attitude of a horrific threat on the horizon.
Of course, Sam Wilson is anything but happy to see the man who constantly tries to steal time with his bestie. "You sure he's all right?" Wilson asks.
"You mean, am I crazy?" Barnes responds, speaking up for himself.
"Are you gonna snap and kill someone if someone slips and says 'bologna sandwich?'" Wilson adds, clearly referencing Barnes' brainwashing, best seen in Captain America: Civil War.
"Not bologna, no," Bucky deadpans.
"I hate you," Wilson concludes.
The Vision is being escorted to a Wakandan lab in seek of aid. He took quite a beating as attempts to grab the Mind Stone lodged his head were narrowly defended before this meeting. All the while, Banner and Rhodey banter about the incredible Wakandan nation to each other in the background.
While heroes like Thor, Iron Man, Doctor Strange, and members of the Guardians of the Galaxy aren't present for the moment, it's because some will be joining later while the splintered Avengers following Civil War have been left to combat Thanos on other fronts. Strange's presence might just be considerable, seeing as production found it necessary to build an entirely new Sanctum Santorum set for the new film. There is an Infinity Stone hanging out there, after all.
Names like Larson and her Captain Marvel character, however, won't grace the screen in Avengers: Infinity War as originally confirmed by ComicBook.com at San Diego Comic-Con, but rather its untitled sequel set for release just over a year later.
By this point, production on the massive film was set to conclude on July 14, 2017, just before a short break leading into the fourth Avengers. It was, however, one of the biggest days on the film's set. "This is the biggest cast so far," Hulk actor Mark Ruffalo said.
"They're in my world," Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman said. "It's interesting to have them enter our space, which is not something that happens all of the time. I think it's important for us to give the flavor of Wakanda, and their immediate adjusting to our space. I think that will be part of the fun of the movie. The Guardians entering it, obviously there's a clash. All of it is conflict, but it's not conflict between us necessarily. It is an emotional, psychological, social conflict."
While the film will impressively balance each of the characters if this scene is any indication, some will inevitably come into play before others. The Hulk, for example, seems to begin Avengers: Infinity War in a terrifying bout with the film's Mad Titan.
"Banner knows probably more about Thanos than anybody," Ruffalo said. "He's really trying to impress on everybody how dangerous he is. It's a little bit of a Chicken Little. He comes in screaming, 'Bloody murder!' He's seen what damage [Thanos] can cause and how powerful he is. The entire group is in disarray, so there's also getting caught up on what's happened here. He's trying to get them to transcend their differences and impress upon them how much danger they're actually facing."2comments
If Ruffalo's Hulk is scared of any being, fans will likely share the same feeling by the time Avengers: Infinity War concludes: "The Hulk is also mightily impressed by Thanos."
Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on April 27, 2018. If you have any questions about ComicBook.com's time on set of Avengers: Infinity War, leave them in the comment section below or send them to @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter!