Avengers: Endgame is a record-setting movie for Marvel Studios, for more reasons than one. The film is making a killing at box office and it one of the highest-reviewed films in Marvel's stable of properties. The Russo Brothers-directed movie also introduced several plot devices to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including time travel.
The time travel, in turn, allowed the film to introduce two versions of Thanos (Josh Brolin) in the same movie. The "old" Thanos, who was from the current timeline, and a younger Thanos, who jumped forward in time from 2014 to 2023. To keep the two versions of the character separate during the development of the movie, the creative team dubbed the younger version of two as "Warrior Thanos."
"We refer to him as Warrior Thanos, the version of the character before he put down his armor and became enlightened and wanted to search for the stones," Anthony Russo told Empire in a recent interview. "He's angrier; it might be his flaw in the film, that he's a little bit more precocious and self-confident, not quite as enlightened."
The New Zealand-based VFX house Weta Digital was tasked with helping come up with the younger version of Thanos and last month, we spoke to Weta's Matt Aitken on the differences between the two versions.
“He is kind of like a slightly different character,” Aitken says of the younger Thanos in Endgame. “But we did use the same base assets for both films. We spent a lot of time, obviously, on Infinity War working Thanos up. But then the Thanos that we see in Endgame is a younger Thanos. He's come forward from 2014, so he's... technically, I think he's like four years younger than the Thanos of Infinity War. He's more agile. He's kind of at the peak of his physical prowess. And he's also clothed differently. He's wearing the armor. He's in battle mode."
"We did the sequences on Titan for Infinity War where he was kind of dressed much more casually, and he's more philosophical in those. So we had that work to do to kind of redress him in the armor. We wanted to reflect his youth and his power, mainly through animation. So that's not so much a change that we make to the base asset, but it is a change that we make to the approach on how we're animating him.”
Avengers: Endgame is now in theaters and will be followed by Spider-Man: Far From Home on July 2nd. Captain Marvel is now available digitally ahead of a home media release on June 11th.