Avengers: Endgame directors, Joe and Anthony Russo, have explained their reasons for lying about the movie’s title. The franchise’s previous installment, Avengers: Infinity War, wrapped up with Thanos’s reality-altering finger snap, leaving fans to speculate about what would happen next. Unlike the MCU entries preceding it, the title for the fourth Avengers movie wasn’t revealed well before its release. Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige made it clear that he felt the name of the film would spoil the ending of Infinity War. This only caused the excitement to reach fever pitch, especially following that movie's release.
Fan theories for Avengers 4 abounded, with endless deliberation about everything from the movie’s title to all the ways in which our heroes could triumph. These ideas range from possible to completely ridiculous, but the Russo Brothers have previously stated how much they appreciate the enthusiasm that fans have for putting the pieces together. "Endgame" refers to an important line uttered by Doctor Strange in Infinity War and some viewers correctly guessed that it would be the name of the film. When questioned about this possibility, the directors simply lied during press interviews, even when asked point blank, denying that Avengers 4 would indeed be Avengers: Endgame. When the title was finally unveiled, fans and journalists alike were a bit frustrated by the duo’s former denials of what turned out to be the truth.
Speaking to Slash Film, Joe Russo elucidated the directors’ reasoning behind keeping the title a secret, even if it meant lying. He stated:
"That was a year before the movie gets released, and we are constantly changing things and these are iterative and creative processes. It is impossible to commit to anything with any kind of clarity a year before you’re about to release some content. ‘Cause who knows your DP could accidentally put the title on his resume and then we throw it out. You know, like there are a million reasons why that may or may not be a title for the movie. And until we sit in a room and we watch a trailer with the title on it, then we all look at each other and say, we running with this title. That’s usually when the title sticks to a movie. So when people are asking us questions a year before release… And look, they have the right and that’s their job but we also have the right and it’s our job to protect the creative integrity of our choices. And you don’t want to be trapped into, and pressured into choices in the same way that a writer wants to feel like they’re getting accurate answers out of us – There are no accurate answers a year out!"
Russo is referring to their cinematographer adding Avengers: End Game to his resume last summer - after the Russos had already claimed that fan speculation about the title was incorrect. The DP quickly removed the project from his website after the news coverage.
Joe and Anthony Russo’s avoidance of the truth fits right in with the advertising campaign for Avengers: Endgame. Trailers for Avengers: Endgame were manipulated and multiple endings have been shot. This is partially to keep fans guessing, but also probably because some Marvel stars are notoriously loose-lipped and have previously leaked information not meant for the public. While fans may have felt betrayed, the directors were just doing everything they could to protect their movie.
This film will be the culmination of something that Marvel Studios has spent over a decade building toward. Tensions are running high, both among fans and those behind-the-scenes. Fielding countless questions about all the secrets that one should be keeping is certainly not an enviable task. Perhaps the title of Avengers: Endgame wouldn’t have been such a spoiler after all, but can we really blame the Russo Brothers for trying to keep the circumstances of the plot as mysterious as possible? At least fans won’t have to wait too much longer to find out how this epic story will conclude, as well as what's in store for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Source: Slash Film
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019