Avengers: Infinity War may be a massive hit, bringing in almost $2 billion at the box office thus far as well as earning a lot praise, but even for all the success the film's ending has drawn criticism from fans. Now, the film's directors are speaking out.
Even if you haven't actually seen Infinity War there's a good chance you know how the movie ends: Thanos, having collected all six of the Infinity Stones, snaps his fingers and wipes out half of the universe. This dramatic move includes a lot of Marvel's heroes, such as Spider-Man, Black Panther, and all of the Guardians of the Galaxy except Rocket. The devastation is so epic it's actually easier to count who survived rather than who died as only a handful of heroes remain.
All of those deaths left fans with some strong emotional reactions as well as some confusion. Even though writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have said that Avengers 4 might not take back those deaths, there are additional movies currently in the works for some of the deceased characters. Spider-Man, Black Panther, and the Guardians all have upcoming movies while actors, including David Bautista (Drax) have confirmed they will appear in those films. That surely means Avengers 4 will undo deaths, right?
Not according to The Russo Brothers. They told Huffington Post that appearing in another movie may not mean survival simply because of timeline.
"Here's the thing, I think it's important to remember anything is possible in the MCU [Marvel Cinematic Universe]," Anthony Russo said. "Just because there's a sequel on the books doesn't mean ... people become accustomed to time moving linearly in the MCU. That doesn't necessarily have to be the case. There's a lot of very inventive ways of where the story can go from here"
Joe Russo elaborated even further.
"There's four years between Guardians 2 and Infinity War. That's a long time, and a lot of Guardians stories to tell. Again, as Anthony said, don't expect everything to move forward in a linear fashion in the Marvel universe."
There's already proof of the lack of linear progress in the MCU. Ant-Man and The Wasp, which hits theaters in July, and Captain Marvel are both set prior to Infinity War. It's also possible that Avengers 4 itself will be a bit non-linear as there have been persistent rumors and fan theories that the film will include time travel -- something that set photos may or may not confirm.
In any case, whatever Avengers 4 holds for not just the MCU but for fan-beloved heroes there's one thing that fans can count on and that no one has any idea what to expect.
"Nobody knows, and that's what makes me particularly excited. I look all the time on the internet: people have no idea!" McFeely said earlier this year. "[Avengers] 4 resolves the intrigue of Infinity War, [the movies are] clearly linked, but they almost seem to belong to two different genres. We did not want to cut a film in half and say, 'Pay now and come back in a year for the rest!' These are two very different stories, on a tonal and structural level."
Avengers: Infinity War is now playing in theaters. Other upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe movies include Ant-Man and the Wasp on July 6th, Captain Marvel opens on March 8, 2019, the fourth Avengers movie on May 3, 2019, the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming on July 5, 2019, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 in 2020.