Filmmakers Joe and Anthony Russo made a startling revelation that Marvel president Kevin Feige wanted not two, but all six of the original Avengers dead in Avengers: Endgame. In a conversation on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, the director duo said that they felt Kevin’s pitch of killing all the Avengers was way too aggressive.
Joe said, “There were lots of rumours swirling about who was gonna die. Kevin did actually pitch, at one point, taking all the OGs off the board. We thought it was way too aggressive and that the audience wouldn’t be able to process it. And that, in fact, picking one or two characters to make sacrifices throughout the movie might give you moments throughout the film where the action could stop and you could have emotional catharsis and then continue with the narrative.”
The brothers also spoke about the pressure that came with killing two characters– Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man and Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow in the movie. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Anthony had said, “Part of the pressure [not to kill Tony Stark] came from Jon Favreau, who called us up after he read the script … and said to us, ‘Are you really going to kill Iron Man?'”
Joe recalled, “He did. Yeah. And I remember pacing on the corner of a stage on the phone with Favreau trying to talk him off a ledge. Because he’s like, ‘You can’t do this. It’s gonna devastate people, and you don’t want them, you know, walking out of the theater and into traffic.’ We did it anyways.”
Joe and Anthony Russo recently directed the Netflix film The Gray Man. A sequel has already been announced by Netflix.