When it comes to movie marketing, Avengers: Endgame has been able to play by its own rules. Truly, this is a sequel that the studio could have chosen to NOT market, and the same amount of tickets likely would have been sold. And yet, Disney and Marvel released two full trailers, and a Super Bowl spot, giving fans a look at specific footage from the upcoming blockbuster.
Every frame of what was shown in those Avengers: Endgame trailers has been analyzed by the amateur detectives located in the Marvel Studios fan base. Black Widow’s hair, Tony Stark’s locations, and Captain America’s facial hair has been scrutinized. Then there are the major reveals, like Hawkeye turning into Ronin, or Scott Lang being outside of the Quantum Realm.
With Avengers: Endgame tickets going on sale, we were able to interview Anthony Russo about the upcoming Marvel blockbuster, and I asked him specifically how they choose what to show in a teaser or trailer, knowing that there’s so much left to protect. Russo told us:
We drew from a very small section of the movie. We want it to be very confined. We know how savvy the fans are. We appreciate that there are so many people out there who spend time watching these movies multiple times, thinking about all the places the narratives can go. We just don't want to tip or spoil anything for anybody coming into the theater. We want to keep that experience as fresh and exciting and surprising as possible. So yeah, we're just very careful. That being said, Disney marketing is very, very, very effective, and they're very sophisticated in their process and we trust them a lot. And so they helped guide us in terms of how much we should be putting out. They always leaned on the side of putting out more. We always leaned on the side of putting out less. But we tried to find a good, happy medium.
That’s fascinating to learn that it is Joe and Anthony Russo who are the driving force behind the decision to not show footage in the trailers. Perhaps they also realize that, due to the cliffhanger nature of Avengers: Infinity War – and the success of the Marvel Studios movies, in general – very little has to be done in advance to sell Avengers: Endgame. Announce the release date, and Marvel fans will flock.
But it’s also that rabid passion and enthusiastic dedication to these stories that has the Russos being protective of what they show in the teasers and trailers. Because, as Anthony Russo states, fans will pore over every provided frame… and the brothers wouldn’t have it any other way. He tells us:
We love that! Part of our thrill as filmmakers working with these stories is that we were fans once, before we became filmmakers. We love participating in these stories ourselves as fans. So the fact that others are doing that? You know, we've always loved active viewers. That’s the viewer we’ve always strived to engage with. Whether it be in our early indie film work, in our television work, or now in our Marvel work. We're always looking to engage audiences who are passionate like that.
That approach has helped Joe and Anthony Russo make, arguably, the three most memorable movies in the MCU, in Infinity War, Civil War and The Winter Soldier. Their fandom shines through in their storytelling, and their love for these characters can be felt in the fabric of their movies. It’s why we eagerly anticipate the arrival of Avengers: Endgame, which opens everywhere on April 26.
Tickets are on sale now, so get them while they last.