‘Avengers: Endgame’ Writers Revealed How They Picked Who Died, Storylines That Were Abandoned, And Their One Regret

Avengers Endgame Writers On Who Died Abandoned Storylines Regret

Marvel Studios

Avengers: Endgame writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, who also wrote all three Captain America films, Thor: The Dark World, Agent Carter, and Infinity War, recently sat down with Vanity Fair for a Q&A at the Writers Guild of America West.

During the lengthy session, Markus and McFeely revealed how they picked who lived and died in the Infinity War/Endgame sage, shared some alternate storylines that were abandoned, and their one regret about how they treated a certain superhero.

The plotting out of two movies as massive as Infinity War and Endgame is not an easy one. Which is why they used trading cards with each character’s picture on them. Seriously.

“On one wall is Movie One, and one wall is Movie Two, and the third wall has baseball cards of all the Marvel characters, and we could move them around,” said McFeely, who added that he now has all of those (very valuable) trading cards in his dresser.

“[Each one] says if we have them or not for this movie. And there was a little rating. We didn’t know how much [money] each actor made, but it had either one dollar sign or up to five dollar signs,” he explained.

“You actually try not to leave the five-dollar-signs on the sidelines. In the beginning stages it’s a, Oh, wouldn’t it be interesting if Groot and Rocket and Thor went on a journey together? What kind of chemistry could you get from that? But also, we took this job because it scared the hell out of us, because that first movie has 23 [main] characters in it,” added McFeely.

“If you know that movie, and you know how we ended it, it was in large part just so the second movie would have fewer characters,” he revealed. “And we could work with that! [Laughs] We started with 65 characters. I mean, it’s just everyone who was vaguely alive. And when we narrowed it down, you don’t want 23 people in a scene — ever.”

As for Thor and Hawkeye, it wasn’t because they had another movie and TV show respectively coming up that they lived, it was because, as Markus explained, “It’s not necessarily that we knew they’d get more stories, it’s just that… Thor has sacrificed and sacrificed and lost and lost. It’s not a good ending to kill him.”

“And Clint got his family back, and that’s something,” he added.

Tony Stark, on the other hand, he was destined to die.

Avengers Endgame Writers On Who Died Abandoned Storylines Regret

marvel studios

Markus and McFeely also revealed some Avengers: Endgame alternate storylines that ended up not making it into the film.

“There was a sequence in [Infinity War] where they went into the places in the Doctor Strange universe called the Mindscape and everyone faces themselves,” said Markus. “It was great but had absolutely nothing to do with anything.”

“Banner meets the Hulk, I think in the arena from Ragnarok,” added McFeely. “Only one of them was getting out of there, and then that one showed up in Wakanda [in Infinity War] and he had merged. That merging that currently happens in [Endgame] in a diner, and he’s eating a huge stack of pancakes? That initially happened at the end of Infinity War.”

“The Hulk refuses to come out, if you remember, and [in the discarded storyline] they eventually came to a realization or a compromise and he busted out of the Iron Man suit and beats the heck out of this [monster],” McFeely continued. “That whole Third Act is a march toward losing, and this Hulk scene is a big win, right? It’s a guy solving his problem and being a funny character because now, he’s eloquent. We had to, at the last second, scrap all that, put aside all these scenes that used to have Smart Hulk and then re-shoot the First Act of Endgame, going to Thanos’ country lodge, that used to have the Smart Hulk.”

Their one regret with the movies centers on Natasha Romanoff, AKA Black Widow.

“She jumps on the grenade. I’m really proud of that moment. I don’t have any regrets. The only regret is that it comes at the end of Act Two,” said McFeely. “So you can’t really roll around in the grief because we’ve got another hour of movie and we haven’t solved the A-plot problem. So that’s the downside.”

The writers covered a lot more territory with regard to the two films. Read about it all over at Vanity Fair.

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Before settling down at BroBible, Douglas Charles, a graduate of the University of Iowa (Go Hawks), owned and operated a wide assortment of websites. He is also one of the few White Sox fans out there and thinks Michael Jordan is, hands down, the GOAT.