Thanos is already the biggest bad guy in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but Avengers: Infinity War director Joe Russo wants to turn him into a cultural icon.
“The stakes are incredibly high,” Russo says of the situation in Avengers: Infinity War. “I wanted to turn Thanos into Darth Vader for a new generation. He’s an incredibly intense character. Sociopathic. He takes no prisoners. I think the audience needs to be prepared when they go see these movies.”
Thanos is on a quest for the Infinity Stones to adorn his Infinity Gauntlet, thus granting him infinite power. When asked how this quest affects the structure of Avengers: Infinity War, Russo brought up his and his brother and co-director Anthony Russo’s habit of using popular films as touchpoints.
“Structurally, with this first film, Avengers 3, we’ve been using smash and grab ‘90s heist films,” he says. “There’s a real urgency to the film and it adds a level of excitement and relentlessness to the movie. It’s a lot of divergent narratives coming together into a climax.”
Will Thanos emerge with as big a profile as Darth Vader by the film’s end? Will fans begin speculating over who would win in a fight between the Mad Titan and the Dark Lord of the Sith? Eager audiences will have to wait until May 2018 to find out.