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The Marvel Cinematic Universe is no stranger to ensemble-led movies, but Avengers: Infinity War is kicking things up a few notches in terms of cast size. Dozens of MCU characters are coming together next month to battle Thanos and his minions and prevent them from obtaining the six Infinity Stones. With so many players in the mix, it stands to reason that certain people will receive more attention than others, and according to Infinity War co-director Joe Russo, Thanos and Thor will be among the ones who score a lot of screen time during the movie. Russo explained:
I think Thanos has an incredible amount of screen time, and I think you'll find that Thor has a really interesting arc in the film. He hasn't been at the forefront of other Avengers movies but he certainly has a very important role in this film. So I'll say, Thanos and Thor.
Given that Thanos is Avengers: Infinity War's main antagonist, it's not shocking to hear that he'll be appear a lot during the movie. Although Thanos was introduced at the end of The Avengers and later cameoed in Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers: Age of Ultron, we don't know much about the Mad Titan other than the fact that he's feared throughout the galaxy, he's kidnapped children to turn them into assassins, and he's obsessed with obtaining a full collection of multi-colored, powerful gems. He finally gets to step into the spotlight in Infinity War and not only prove why he's a force to be reckoned with, but also clue audiences in on his motivations, namely why he's wants to rewrite reality using the Infinity Stones.
As for Thor, we most recently saw him in Thor: Ragnarok, where he was put through the ringer on both Asgard and Sakaar, and left the movie having lost his hammer, eye and home world. At the end of Ragnarok, Thor was on his way back to Earth with Loki and Asgard's citizens, but they were intercepted by Thanos' ship, and it won't be long before the God of Thunder finds himself being threatened by the Mad Titan. Fortunately, Thor will make it out of that encounter intact, and later on, he'll hang out with the Guardians of the Galaxy and eventually reunite with his old Avengers buddies.
Going back to Thanos, Joe Russo also mentioned during his conversation with Fandango that Thanos essentially serves as Avengers: Infinity War's main character, saying:
Thanos has an incredible amount of screen time in this film, in a lot of ways I would say it's his movie. Our job when we make these films --- and what we feel is important to us --- is to surprise the audience. We wanted to tell a story that they weren't expecting, and the story is told from the point of view of a villain, which I think is also really unique and risky for a commercial film that will surprise the audience. I think this is a market where the audience really enjoys innovation and disruption, and we want to do something innovative in this space.
With Josh Brolin reprising Thanos for Avengers 4 next year, it will be interesting to see where the Mad Titan leaves off at the end of Avengers: Infinity War. Still, after years of him being teased as the MCU's overarching villain, it's nice that we're now only weeks away from him finally showing why he was awarded that honor.
Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on May 4, and if you're interested in what else the MCU has coming up, look through our Marvel movies guide.