Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS ahead for Avengers: Infinity War
Joe and Anthony Russo reveal that they deliberately used misdirection in Avengers: Infinity War marketing, particularly in the trailers to make sure that fans can crack the film's overall narrative prematurely. Having directed four films for Marvel (including next year's Avengers 4), the directing duo has somewhat mastered the art of keeping secrets despite numerous press junkets and interviews. But they also intentionally threw off people from piecing together what actually goes down in the latest MCU installment via the misdirection on the movie's previews.
It's not a secret that the MCU has an engaged fan-base resulting in countless online forums dissecting the films in the hopes of finding fun tidbits or even clues about what the future holds for their beloved characters. While it's always great to have an active fandom, this creates problems for Marvel Studios with regard to keeping plot details under wraps. And with Infinity War their biggest undertaking yet, the Russos couldn't risk even the slightest possibility that people found out about the movie before it even rolled out in theaters.
In an interview with Variety, Joe talked about how he and his brother pulled off in balancing what narrative to follow in Infinity War. Despite being (loosely) based on Jim Starlin's 1992 comic book run, Marvel Studios tweaked several aspects of the stories to keep it interesting. To maintain the secrecy of the film, the two admit to having crafted the film's trailers to seemingly drop hints about what goes down in the movie, but in reality, they're masking its real plot. For instance, the trailers looked like they were setting up the deaths of Iron Man and maybe even Cap, but in the end, they, alongside a few others, survived Thanos' universal genocide.
For the record, it's not an unusual practice, especially in high-profile flicks, but the misdirect could've easily been viewed as false advertising. But for some reason, fans understood why it needed to be done. It's even more interesting considering that shots of the actual end of the blockbuster were included in the previews, only that people's theories about the said sequences were so way off.
Aside from the deliberate misdirection in trailers, the Russos also made sure that the cast and crew involved in the movie are tightlipped about Infinity War. That included the actors not receiving full scripts, others even getting fake ones. Days before the movie screened for the first time in full, the directing duo sent out a plea to everyone to not intentionally spoil the film to others. The leaks were contained, but given the internet culture, it was only a matter of time before people started openly talking about the movie with no regard to those who may not have seen it yet. Nevertheless, Marvel Studios did a fine job preserving the blockbuster's secrecy as much as they could.
There was, however, a clue about the shocking ending of Avengers: Infinity War courtesy of the film's poster. As Thanos' life-mission is to balance the universe, half of the heroes in the ensemble one-sheet were killed, while the remaining half survived the random genocide. Although while it's now easily viewed that way, arguably no one has seen that coming, especially considering that most of the dead characters are expected to move past Phase 3.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019