Integrating THE DEFENDERS Into AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR Would Be "Complicated"

Integrating THE DEFENDERS Into AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR Would Be "Complicated"

Integrating THE DEFENDERS Into AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR Would Be "Complicated"

For those of you holding out hope that The Defenders, and to a lesser extent, the Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. would possibly show up in Avengers: Infinity War. Well, co-director Anthony Russo provided his take on the whole situation, saying "it's complicated."

Ever since Marvel expanded into television and Netflix, fans have been clamoring to see some of these new small-screen heroes, specifically The Defenders, show up in Marvel Studios' two-part magnum opus, Avengers: Infinity War.

So, what's the verdict? Is there a possibility we get to see some of Marvel's popular and well-received Netflix Defenders show up to assist The Avengers in Infinity War? 

Well, "it's complicated."

Speaking with SUPER Interessante at CCXP, co-director Anthony Russo fielded a question regarding whether any of The Defenders could realistically appear in Avengers: Infinity War. Instead of going into the likelihood of it actually happening, Russo chooses to touch on how difficult it would be to actually make it happen. "The films are controlled by a group led by Kevin Feige, so they function as a unit. Other products, even if they are from Marvel, are controlled by others." Breaking down what this means, outside of seemingly affirming rumors of a small divide between Marvel Studios & Marvel Television, is that even though all of Marvel's content takes place in the same universe, the creative decisions behind the films, the TV shows, and the Netflix series are made independently of one another.

So, essentially, it's up to Feige and the film division to decide on whether or not they want to feature a small-screen character in one of their big-budget films and then it's up to the television division to decide on whether they want to adjust their production schedule and allow that to happen. We may have seen film characters cross over into television before, but crossing television characters into films is considerably more complicated. 

Read Anthony Russo's full answer below:  

SUPER: The Marvel Cinematic Universe that we see in theaters today is much bigger than the one we first saw with The Avengers. There are many more heroes and there are new pieces being added with the ABC TV series and the Netflix series. How do you organize it? Is there a chance we see Jessica Jones battling Thanos (the villain) in Infinity War?

Anthony Russo: It's complicated. When we start to serialize the telling of stories it's difficult. You have to have a lot of control and focus on the course of history. The films are controlled by a group led by Kevin Feige, so they function as a unit. Other products, even if they are from Marvel, are controlled by others. Then there is the possibility of a crossover, but it's more complicated. It is a smaller scale version of the problem that exists when remembering that Fox holds the rights to some of Marvel's most popular characters, as does Sony and others. As storytellers, we only have control over what happens in Marvel movies, but everything is possible, Spider-Man (whose rights were held by Sony) became possible!

Never say never, but based on Russo's comments, it really doesn't sound like integrating Marvel's small-screen heroes into Avengers: Infinity War is particularly high on Kevin Feige's to-do list. Does this mean it won't happen? Absolutely not. They did after all manage to bring Spider-Man into the mix, which at this time last year, seemed like an impossible mission that only Ethan Hunt could conquer. However, when you consider that Spider-Man is and always will be an extremely popular film character with a rich and well-known history, it's easier to throw him into the mix story-wise versus adding a variety of pieces from television that by 2018 will all have their own on-going story arcs and extensive history that the general audience may or (more likely than not) may not be aware of.

Also, judging by Russo's comment, it could be inferred that The Defenders (and to a much lesser extent, the Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.) would only be added to Infinity War and/or to any Phase 3 film if they somehow benefitted the story, which currently seems like a long shot at best. When you look at Infinity War and the vast amount of heroes that film will already be juggling, it's hard to imagine how any of Marvel's television characters could impact the story in a meaningful way and not just be glorified cameos.

What do you guys think? Sound off with your thoughts below!

How big of a threat does Thanos pose, you ask? Big enough to span two epic films, beginning with Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War Part 1” on May 4, 2018, and concluding in Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War Part 2” on May 3, 2019 for one massive cinematic event.

“We’ve always had a plan since Nick Fury broke into Tony Stark’s house and told him he’s part of a bigger universe," recalled Feige. "'Avengers: Infinity War Part 1' is the beginning of the culmination of everything that has come before."

Avengers: Infinity War will feature:
Directors: Anthony & Joe Russo
Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark/Iron Man
Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America
Chris Hemsworth as Thor Odinson
Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner/Hulk
Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow
Jeremy Renner as Clint Barton/Hawkeye
Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa/Black Panther
Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man
Paul Bettany as The Vision
Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch
Don Cheadle as James Rhodes/War Machine
Evangeline Lilly as Hope van Dyne/Wasp
Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson/Falcon
Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier
Chris Pratt as Peter Quill/Star-Lord
Zoe Saldana as Gamora
Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer
Vin Diesel as Groot
Bradley Cooper as Rocket Raccoon
Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange/Doctor Strange
Unknown actress as Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel
Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spider-Man
Tom Hiddleston as Loki Laufeyson
Josh Brolin as Thanos

Avengers: Infinity War - Part 1 hits theaters May 4, 2018
Avengers: Infinity War - Part 2 hits theaters May 3, 2019

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