As it turns out, deciding to play the most notorious and all-powerful villain of the Marvel Cinematic Universe was easier than expected. While out promoting his latest film, Sicario, Josh Brolin dished on his role as the "Mad Titan" Thanos. He may not have revealed when and where we’ll see him pop up next, but he discussed his decision to take on the part.
Speaking with ComingSoon, Brolin said:
This book he refers to is what he described to MTV as filled with "stuff" from Marvel executive producer Louis D’Esposito. He told the outlet that he was only halfway through the material when he decided to come aboard.
Thanos made his first appearance in the mid-credits scene of The Avengers, though he only gave a profile of his smirking face. Back then, Brolin wasn’t in the role; stuntman and bitactor Damion Poitier portrayed the Mad Titan for this brief scene. Afterwards, Thanos popped up again in James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy as the adopted father of Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Nebula (Karen Gillan), and the puppet master behind Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace). Here, Brolin voiced Thanos and portrayed him through motion capture. The character’s third appearance came at the mid-credits stinger for Avengers: Age of Ultron, where he took out his Infinity Stone-less gauntlet to track down the powerful relics.
Brolin previously teased, "It’s Thanos against everyone," which was something that intrigued him about the character. Much like he did in Phases One and Two of the MCU, Thanos is expected to pop up here and there through the Phase Three lineup of films, which includes (in no particular order) Captain America: Civil War, Doctor Strange, Thor: Ragnarok, Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2, Spider-Man, Black Panther, and Captain Marvel. All of these installments will lead up to the big showdown against Thanos wielding all six Infinity Stones in the two-part Avengers: Infinity War.
Amid the extras on the Age of Ultron home release, a featurette offers newbies a primer for the Infinity Stones, which are referred to as the Infinite Six. These objects of immense power include the Tesseract, aka The Space Stone; the Mind Stone from inside Loki’s scepter; the Aether, aka The Reality Stone; and The Power Stone inside the orb. Only two more remain to be revealed — The Time Stone and The Soul Stone. And Thanos wants them all.