The fingerprints of writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are all over the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With writing credits for all three Captain America films, Thor: The Dark World and the Agent Carter TV series, the duo have crafted much of the MCU we know and love. Now they find themselves at work putting together the script for the two-part Avengers: Infinity War saga, the films that will be the pinnacle of Marvel’s now 8-year old experiment in connected movie universes and long-form story-telling. The films, which go into production this fall ahead of releases in May of 2018 and 2019, will finally deliver on the promise of one of Marvel’s most dramatic villains, Thanos the Mad Titan. Markus and McFeely are taking on the challenge of rounding out this version of the nihilistic Thanos and talked about it with the folks at JoBlo.
Created by comic legend Jim Starlin in 1973, Thanos is certainly one of Marvel’s most unique and compelling characters and has appeared in numerous crossover events (most famously in The Infinity Gauntlet and most recently in Jonathan Hickman‘s Infinity) meaning he usually takes center stage when all of Marvel’s heroes unite. Though he’s been circling in the background for a while now, he’ll quickly be the center of attention as he assembles the Infinity Stones from around the universe. While many assume that the Titan will follow the same arc he did in the comics, Markus and McFeely are quick to point out that isn’t how they roll:
CM: I figure we can safely say we are willing to pull from anything Thanos is in.
SM: As you said, we tend to take the ingredients and make a different meal out of it. WINTER SOLDIER owes a great deal to the Brubaker run but it’s not the Brubaker run. CIVIL WAR owes a great deal to Millar, but it’s not close to the Civil War run. So we’ll do the same thing with Thanos and his gauntlet.
So how will the pair go about giving us Thanos in all his glory when, to this point, he’s been relegated to a few one liners? It’s been expected for some time that the first Infinity War film will be the Thanos-centric film that Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige teased once upon a time, but the two scribes aren’t revealing too much about their plans for his unveiling:
CM: We can reveal nothing, but we are equally fascinated. Legitimately we are fascinated by Thanos.
McFeely, however, does seem to tip his hand slightly…
SM: There are a lot of reasons we took the job but one of them was wow, we get to take the biggest villain Marvel has ever has and try and do him justice.
and then goes on to gush about Marvel’s Netflix series in which the villains really get their just due while addressing one of the most common complaints concerning Marvel villains:
SM: If you think about it, I get the criticism, but the early phases were all origin stories. It tends to create a similar villain. When it is no longer an origin story, I think you might have a little bit more freedom to create different villains. I’m sensitive to the problem. I get it. But it wasn’t the Robert Redford story, it was CAPTAIN AMERICA: WINTER SOLDIER. It wasn’t the Red Skull’s journey, it was the journey of one guy going from ninety pound weakling to American hero and then going into the ice. So in a 120-minute movie it is difficult, and Thanos will possibly change that, but you want time spent. Excuse me for going on a tangent but I love the Marvel Netflix shows because you have so much more time to spend with your villains. It’s literally minutes and hours spent. We have 120-minutes and Jessica Jones had how ever many it had.
Reading between the lines, it certainly seems we can expect to see a Thanos-centric film and, perhaps finally, have one of Marvel’s biggest baddies get his time in the spotlight.