An early version of Avengers: Infinity War caused scribes Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely to panic because "no one liked" its script, which contained a storyline for Thor (Chris Hemsworth) that "sucked rocks."
"There's a lot of trial and error in these. We got this [Avengers] job before we started shooting Civil War, and all of the things you've seen on screen were sort of created in some nascent way in the last four months of 2015. So we've been living with this for a long time," McFeely said at San Diego Comic-Con.
"But it goes through all these ebbs and flows, and there was a point in mid-to-late 2016 where no one liked what we all had. And so we flew back to Burbank from Atlanta in sort of a panic, all hands on deck, 'oh my God, we're in trouble.' And the biggest thing that came out of that was the Thor storyline sucked rocks."
In his journey to claim an enchanted axe capable of killing even Thanos (Josh Brolin), Thor would have teamed with Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) against a giant serpent — pictured in concept art revealed in The Art of Avengers: Infinity War — a story turn that was "much too adventure-related and very much insufficiently character based," added Markus.
"And so eventually, Eitri and the Dyson sphere and all of that stuff, only came out of that panic," McFeely said.
"And it was dark because it felt like we'd been on it a long time and hadn't done enough, or done well enough. For any aspiring writers out there, we still feel that way all the time. It's only sort of by the goodwill of all the people you're working with and their willingness to grind."
But the Kevin Feige-operated Marvel Studios, Markus added, is "not a panic-based company."
"There are many companies in Los Angeles that freak out. Slap a first draft in front of them and they freak out, because it's a first draft. Because everybody wants a third draft for a first draft," he said.
"Marvel knows damn well what a first draft is, and then they work on it. And that means you never leave the conference room, but it makes good movies."
Directors Anthony and Joe Russo have since named two scenes centered around Thor as their favorites from Infinity War and Endgame, chiefly Thor's rousing entrance in Wakanda during the climax of Infinity War.
"Only because, frankly, everything that happens in that movie, that is the biggest set up — one of the biggest set ups — for what happens at the end," Joe said.0comments
"Because Thor is actually on a hero's arc in that movie, Thanos is on a hero's arc in that movie, and that final moment when those two meet and he does not chop his head off, is when it becomes Thanos' movie and not Thor's movie. So that arrival scene really helped us create that misdirect for what happened at the end of that movie."
Avengers: Endgame releases digitally July 30 and on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray August 13.