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Joe and Anthony Russo are no strangers when it comes to the moviegoing experience. Aside from directing two of the biggest films of all time, they’re also lifelong film fans who have been hitting the theaters for years. Now, with audiences currently being refined to their homes, the Russos are opening up about the possibility of their Marvel films being used to draw people back to the movies.
The Russo Brothers stopped by our ReelBlend podcast to talk about their latest film, Extraction, and to discuss their past work. While chatting, the pair were asked about the idea of Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame being re-released in cinemas once the public is allowed to return. Not only does Joe Russo believe this would be a great way to welcome audiences back to the theaters, but he and his brother would consider it to be a career highlight:
The theatrical experience is a community experience. Perhaps the most touching moment of our entire careers was a few weeks ago when the lockdown started, and Endgame was trending on social media because everyone was posting videos of opening-night screenings in their theaters with audiences really emotionally connected to the material. For us, that's really the strength of the theatrical experience is that it combines audiences, and it combines you globally. To have been a part of movies that did that, on that scale with that level of emotional connection from the audience, was really very touching, and will be the highlight of our careers. So, using those films to get people back into the theaters? We would be ecstatic. I mean, any opportunity for people to go back and share in those stories together is one that we would support.
With the one-year anniversary of Avengers: Endgame having just passed, everyone (including those directly involved in making it) is feeling sentimental when looking back at the film's debut. On the one hand, its opening night was certainly a profitable evening for Marvel Studios and Disney but, on the other, it was a chance for fans to fellowship and celebrate the end of an era.
The Russo’s love of the cinema can’t be understated. Joe Russo previously revealed that when he was a kid, he once spent an entire day in a theater watching back-to-back showings of The Empire Strikes Back. Given this, one can see why the brothers wouldn’t mind using their work to encourage go to the movies once they’re able to.
As of right now, all major theater chains remain closed, and it’s difficult for analysts to predict when we might see them reopen. Cinemark’s Sean Gamble is hoping to get things back up and running in July, but there are still a number of obstacles that stand in his way of doing so.
I think most of us, especially Marvel fans, would agree that Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame would be a strong way to reopen theaters. Both films added up to a unique cinematic experience, and you can bet there are plenty of people out there who are more than ready to see them on the big screen again.
Be sure to look out for ReelBlend’s full conversation with Joe and Anthony Russo when it becomes available this week.