Somehow, the Avengers all made it through Captain America: Civil War alive.
There were no casualties among the superheroes in the latest Marvel movie. The major character deaths were Peggy Carter, the villain Crossbones, and the Wakandan King, T'Chaka. But somehow, all of the Avengers and their new superpowered buddies survived all the standoffs, bombings, and villains” devious plans. The worst injury by far was Rhodey”s partial paralysis.
Perhaps the impact of a major Marvel character dying has been weakened by the easy return of supposedly dead characters like Nick Fury, but the MCU masterminds have a specific reason for keeping all the Avengers from perishing in Civil War.
At a Q&A that followed a screening of the movie in Hollywood on Friday (it was a “for your consideration” event – Marvel”s gearing up for award campaign season), an audience member asked about this low death toll. Here”s how Marvel president Kevin Feige and directors Joe and Anthony Russo responded:
Anthony Russo: We never talked about killing Cap in this one, right? no.
Joe Russo: We did for a beat. We talk about everything.
Anthony Russo: I think the thing to remember is, we do talk about every possible scenario over and over and over again for months and months and months. We talked about it. But it never made its way into a realistic outline.
Feige: Well, the ending was always more about fracturing the team completely before getting into Infinity War.
Joe Russo: We talked about lots of potential characters dying at the end of the movie. And we thought that it would undercut what is really the rich tension of the movie, which is this is Kramer vs Kramer. It”s about a divorce. If somebody dies, it would create empathy, which would change and allow for repair, and we didn”t want to do that.
Feige: In the amazing comic book story, which certainly the conceit of this movie is based on and some of the specifics – during their big battle, which has a hundred times as many characters, a character dies. And we talked about that for a while. And, ultimately, we thought what happened to Rhodey would be enough of a downer.
Anthony Russo: The tragedy is the family falls apart. Not that the family falls apart and then somebody dies.
The Russo brothers had just flown in from Atlanta, GA, where they”re preparing to start production on Avengers: Infinity War. They were tight-lipped about that next installment, but there were a few other intriguing tidbits revealed during the Q&A:
• Feige spoke about those back-to-back cameos Stan Lee recently shot in Atlanta. He said it was cameos for four upcoming Marvel movies, not the previously reported three, and each cameo is “awesome, and they”re all totally different. “He was unbelievable. He was on fire,” Feige said of the 93-year-old Marvel legend.
• Civil War“s editor, Jeffrey Ford, was also in the panel, and he shed light on the staggering amount of footage they shot for the film: “At one point, we computed it: If we watched everything we shot, we”d be watching it for 21 days straight.”
• One audience member asked Feige which Marvel film he”s most proud of and what”s the project “that got away.” The Marvel chief just expressed his pride in getting a mainstream audience to recognize and care about Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor, after his critics said that Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man were the only superheroes who could be prominent in the public consciousness. As for the one that got away, well, this is probably the closest you”ll hear Feige bashing his Incredible Hulk in a public forum: “I will say Mark Ruffalo”s Hulk portrayal set some things right in a way that made us very happy.”