Since the Marvel cinematic universe began back in 2008, it has all been building toward Avengers: Infinity War: the introduction of the various Avengers, the Infinity gems, Thanos and the introduction to the cosmic side of the Marvel universe in Guardians of the Galaxy. All the pieces are there, and they will all come together in 2018's Avengers: Infinity War, directed by the Russo Brothers.
In a new interview with IGN, Anthony Russo says the film is in some ways an ending for the Marvel cinematic universe as fans know it now, but also a beginning.
"I can't get into too much detail about who we're introducing," Russo says to IGN, "but these movies are in some ways going to be an end to certain things, and in some ways, they're going to be the beginning of certain things."
Obviously, the Marvel cinematic universe will continue on after Infinity War. Fans already know some of the movies that will be coming after, movies like Captain Marvel and yet another Avengers film. But with the news that Infinity War will no longer be a two-part film, it sounds like the Marvel movie universe will start building toward a new endgame after Infinity War, after working toward Thanos for so many years.
As for what that new endgame will be? That's still a mystery, but Infinity War itself proves to be an exciting opportunity for the Russo brothers, thanks to the state of the Marvel cinematic universe at the end of Captain America: Civil War.
"Part of what excited us about how we could end Civil War," Joe Russo says, "and the fact that there is this divide between Cap and Tony and their relationship that will be very, very difficult for them to ever repair, the fact that the Avengers are divided in two and half of them are now wanted by the law and the other fact are not too comfortable with their fate moving forward, and the fact that Thanos and the Infinity War are coming - the greatest threat the universe has ever seen is going to come at the moment where the Avengers are arguably at their lowest, at their worst, at their least strong and most divided since they've been formed - that for us was a very exciting place for us to be as storytellers because of the vulnerable nature of our heroes in that kind of a situation."
Groot actor Vin Diesel recently confirmed that the Guardians of the Galaxy will, in fact, be making an appearance in Infinity War, though the exact nature of their involvement remains a mystery for now.