Infinity War

If you read the title, you can probably guess that this article will include major spoilers for ‘Avengers: Infinity War’. If you still haven’t seen the film and you care about such things, consider yourself warned.

If you’re reading this, then like most of us you’re probably still reeling from the dramatic conclusion of ‘Avengers: Infinity War’. When Thanos snapped his fingers and wiped out half of the universe’s life, the game was changed. There’s no other way to describe that. Even if you remain convinced that some or even all of those characters will be somehow resurrected, there’s no denying the impact of the moment. And indeed, some of those deaths were as jarring as they were because they were the characters we least expected to meet their ends.

And as it turns out, not all of those creative choices were made without resistance. Speaking to the Huffington Post, Marvel production executive and ‘Black Panther’ producer Nate Moore revealed that he tried to talk the Russo brothers out of disintegrating T’Challa.

“I knew pretty well what they were talking about and personally urged them to reconsider. But the storytelling made sense, so I love that we got to see a little bit more of Wakanda in that film, and I hope to see how they’re going to resolve that.”

That’s certainly fair enough, but why T’Challa in particular? Moore continues:

“Touching on all the different ideas you can have, you talk about the pros and cons of each, and they had some really compelling arguments as to why what happened happened. I think ultimately it made for a really interesting, almost more complicated ending to that film because of how well ‘Black Panther’ was embraced by audiences. Again, personally painful, but I understand the reasoning.”

The Russos, meanwhile, have maintained that the choices of which characters would live or die once Thanos snapped his fingers were all story driven. But did they have second thoughts as some of these stories actually began to play out? Particularly given the remarkable box office success of ‘Black Panther’, which saw the movie playing in multiplexes even after it arrived on Blu-ray. Not so, says Anthony Russo:

“We were very cued into the storyline of Panther from his origins in ‘Captain America: Civil War’. The role that Panther and Wakanda played in this movie was sort of a bedrock of the movie, a bedrock of the [Marvel Cinematic Universe]. I think ‘Black Panther’ could have done half the business that it did and it still would’ve been a valid creative choice.”

All of this, of course, is very vague. In all likelihood that’s because ‘Infinity War’ ended with the wave of deaths that followed the finger snap. Even assuming that Marvel is playing for keeps here (in defiance of decades of comic book storytelling conventions), it’s clear that ‘Avengers 4’ will deal in some capacity with the aftermath of all these deaths. That almost certainly includes the future of Wakanda.

Directed by the Russo brothers from a script by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ marks the culmination of a decade-long effort by Marvel Studios and sees the Avengers team up with the Guardians of the Galaxy to take on Thanos. The film counts Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Holland, Karen Gillan, Paul Rudd, Chadwick Boseman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olson, Sebastian Stan, and three gentlemen named “Chris” among its gargantuan cast. The long-awaited movie is in theaters now, while ‘Avengers 4’ is set to arrive on May 3, 2019.