Avengers: Endgame co-director Joe Russo recently compared the movie's primary villain Thanos to infamous Mongol leader and conqueror Genghis Khan. Endgame picks up after events of Infinity War when the Mad Titan Thanos successfully captured the Infinity Stones, which give him the ultimate power to destroy half of all life in the universe.
The Avengers fail to stop Thanos, leaving them to have to deal with him in Endgame, which they eventually do. However, it does take them a long road to get there, and, unfortunately, they lose more allies and friends along the way. The snap itself left many Marvel fans devastated, and there was so much discussion around what something like that might mean for the universe that scientists spent time discussing its implications should it happen in a real-world scenario. The snap heard round the world set up Endgame to become one of the most highly-anticipated movies of all time, with it already on the road to possibly upsetting Avatar as the best-selling movie in history. In its first 11 days, Endgame earned over $2 billion at the worldwide box office and still shows no signs of slowing down.
With Thanos being one of the most iconic villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's likely that some of his inspiration came from history. In an interview with ComicBook, Russo answered a question about Thanos' blade being able to break vibranium, supposedly one of the most durable materials to ever exist. Russo said:
"Clearly, Thanos, you know, is a thousand-year-old character who has fought everyone in the universe. He's the greatest. He's the Genghis Khan of the universe. He would have the greatest weapon."
Genghis Khan lived during the Mongol period of Asia and became one of the most powerful leaders of the time after uniting the nomadic tribes of the area and establishing the largest land empire in history. In comparison, Thanos is one of the most powerful leaders in the universe, and once he had the Infinity Stones, he controlled everyone and everything within it. When the heroes of Earth rebelled against him, he determined to destroy the planet once and for all.
Of course, everyone who has seen Endgame knows that Thanos does not get his way. Although the Avengers lose some valuable team members in the process, some will move on into phase 4 of the MCU, although phase 3 doesn't officially end until after Spider-Man: Far From Home. Thanos is now gone from the MCU, but fans will never forget the massive purple villain who was probably the most formidable foe the Avengers will ever face.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019