With great spoilers comes great responsibility.
Avengers 4 directors Anthony and Joe Russo say they keep secrets from their cast to prevent the stars from feeling pressured over spoilers.
“It is very difficult when your job is to sort of personalize these stories, personalize these characters, and sort of bring all your creative, collaborative energy to a process that lasts many, many months — sometimes more than a year — it’s a big part of your life,” Anthony Russo said during an Avengers: Infinity War screening and Q&A hosted by Collider.
“So it’s very hard not to talk about this stuff, because you live with it for so long and you live with it so deeply. We have developed a process where you take pressure off of people by letting them know less. It’s less responsibility they have to edit themselves, so we’ve developed an elaborate process by which we try to only let people know what they absolutely need to know. And it makes a little bit easier for them to edit themselves.”
Famously loose-lipped Hulk star Mark Ruffalo once let slip “everybody dies” during a July 2017 appearance on Good Morning America, dropping a nine-month-early spoiler for Infinity War, which ended with Thanos (Josh Brolin) eradicating half of all life in the universe — including Earth’s mightiest heroes.
Asked about their reaction to Ruffalo’s faux pas, Joe Russo joked, “We fired him.”
In October, Ruffalo appeared on The Tonight Show and dished a flurry of censored Avengers 4 “spoilers.”
The Russos launched the “Thanos Demands Your Silence” anti-spoilers campaign in the leading days towards Infinity War, urging fans to maintain the “highest level of secrecy” surrounding the film, its true plot known only to “a handful of people” before its wide release.
Vision star Paul Bettany was given a fake Infinity War script and Nebula star Karen Gillan says she never received a script for Avengers 4, the plot of which is so closely guarded even its stars are unaware of its final direction.
“We don’t even know what it’s gonna be yet,” Ruffalo told a Marvel podcast in September before Avengers 4 re-entered reshoots to “finish the movie.”
Of the Russos and screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, Ruffalo added he’s unsure they “really know exactly.”
“Some of it is happening while we’re there. It’s pretty amazing,” he said. “And we’ll shoot some stuff and a few days later come back and reshoot it cause we wanna take it in another direction. It’s a very living organism, even as we approach it being a locked picture, we’re still working on it.”
Recent rumors suggest Marvel Studios will unveil the first Avengers 4 trailer this week, two days after Marvel is confirmed to debut a second Captain Marvel trailer during ESPN’s Monday Night Football.
Captain Marvel opens March 8, followed by Avengers 4 May 3 and Spider-Man: Far From Home July 5, 2019.