“We say the same thing,” remarked Joe Russo when asked about the possibility that he and brother Anthony will direct a version of the Secret Wars plotline for Marvel.
Indeed, they’ve been asked about it for years, giving cagey answers and trying to walk the line between enthusiasm and secrecy. The more Marvel Studios’ Phase 4 unfolds, the more excited fans seem to be about the prospect, which could cap the current cycle of films in much the same way Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame did for Phase 3. Which is why anything the duo says about the idea is parsed endlessly by fans and journalists alike.
Deadline caught up with Anthony and Joe Russo last night at the premiere of their Netflix film, The Grey Man, and managed to get them to talk about why Secret Wars is their dream Marvel project. You can watch the clip below.
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“Our love for Marvel is based on the books that we read as kids, the books that we fell in love with,” Joe told Deadline. “The one series that we adored growing up was Secret Wars. It’s incredibly ambitious. It would be bigger than Infinity War and Endgame. But it’s a massive undertaking. Those two movies were very hard to make. So trying to imagine making another two movies even bigger than those two? We’re going to have to sleep on that.”
One key takeaway from the interview is that Secret Wars is a dream project for the brothers. If you’re Marvel and you have the duo who created two of the top five-grossing films of all time — which took in nearly $6 billion at the box office — and they’re dying to make two more series-capping features for you, it’s got to be a hard idea to resist.
Another takeaway is the phrase “two movies.” While many have assumed Secret Wars would need to be stretched over two films, the brothers Russo have at times referred to Secret Wars as one film.
“It would be the biggest movie you could possibly imagine, so that’s what really excites us about the story — the ambition of it is even bigger than the ambition of the Infinity Saga,” Anthony said in 2020.
Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige, when asked about rumors of a Secret Wars finale for Phase 4, has played coy.
“I’ve seen those rumors as well. Why is everyone talking about that now? That’s what I want to know,” Feige said late last year. “I think one person writes about it, and then another person writes about it, and then everybody’s writing about it, and then it’s happening.”
Last month, in an interview with Total Film, Feige promised more clarity, “We’ll be a little more direct about that in the coming months, to set a plan, so audiences who want to see the bigger picture can see a tiny, tiny, tiny bit more of the roadmap.”
One very obvious signpost in the coming months is D23 Expo 2022, which takes place September 9 through the 11th. Marvel will also be at the upcoming San Diego Comic-Con 2022, but will likely reserve big revelations for September.
The Secret Wars saga involves the X-Men, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Deadpool and the Avengers. It would be a great way to tie all the current plotlines together and synergize the reunited Marvel film assets.
For instance, Spider-Man and the X-Men are now a part of Disney’s MCU. The Webslinger just proved his box office might with Spider-Man: No Way Home which is nearing $2 billion worldwide (right behind Infinity War). Each of the studio’s next five films — and virtually every planned show for Disney+ — involve at least one Avenger. Deadpool 3 is in the works. Oh, and there’s a good chance of a Fantastic Four film finally happen in this cycle.
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