Sunday and yesterday marked the anniversary of the release of both Avengers: Infinity War (April 27) and Avengers: Endgame (April 26). To commemorate the occasion(s), screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and Anthony and Joe Russo, who directed both, were online sharing secrets and stories from the experience of making the movies. The Hollywood Reporter has a recap here. Sounds like there is a lot of unused footage from production, like extra takes and deleted scenes and scene options that were passed over in favour of tighter narrative structure or emotional connection. I wonder if we’ll ever see it. I wonder if they’ll repurpose it like they did in the movie(s); I’m thinking of the Natalie Portman scene in particular.
Of course I’m always looking for the Tony Stark/Iron Man parts because Tony is my favourite, Tony was my gateway to the Avengers, Tony is the one who brought me in. I’ll never not love the Endgame end credits, when they focus on the Original Six with Iron Man to close. And I love that Robert Downey Jr popped in for a bit this weekend to join in the anniversary celebrations. They shared that before they started shooting Infinity War and Endgame, RDJ would hang out with the Russos on Sundays to get deeper into his character – per THR:
“Every week before filming on Infinity War and Endgame, the Russos would meet with Robert Downey Jr. so he could use that time to dig into Tony Stark’s character, work on improvisations, and play with line deliveries. The now famous line, “I love you 3000,” was something that Downey Jr.’s now eight-year old would say to him. Joe Russo discussed the notion of “emotional ownership” that not only came from Downey Jr. incorporating elements of his own life into Tony Stark, but the directors also expressing the values that were important to them. Downey Jr. admitted that the process of filming these movies back to back, after the end of a ten year experience “should’ve been exhausting but it wasn’t” because of the friendship and collaborative process that was established among the directors and the cast.
It shouldn’t be surprising that “I love you 3000” came from RDJ’s life. I was just texting Sarah on Saturday (when I was rewatching Endgame) that one of the key reasons that entire decade of storytelling worked was because he took such a sense of ownership over the character – he was SO proud to be Tony Stark/Iron Man. And yes, it’s that “emotional ownership” that made the difference, even if it meant blurring the lines between real and fiction. Perhaps because he was willing to blur the lines between real and fiction. And to think, nearly 15 years ago, back in 2006, when Jon Favreau first signed on to direct Iron Man, he was determined to cast RDJ, despite resistance from Marvel. How now, all these years later, do you separate Robert Downey Jr from Tony Stark? And how long do you think they’ll wait before they try?
Yours in gossip,