Please enjoy this excerpt from Backstory’s spoiler-specific interview with Avengers: Endgame directors Anthony and Joe Russo from Backstory Issue 37 by Jeff Goldsmith.
This is just small part of our 2,200 word interview and if you enjoy what you’ve read, we hope you’ll consider buying Issue 37 as a single issue or becoming a subscriber.
**Note: Spoilers are contained below!!**
Backstory: Markus and McFeely said arriving at the moment for Tony to say, “I am Iron Man,” was interesting because it wasn’t exactly where they started. They described it as a process of reduction and collaboration with you two and, of course, with Robert Downey Jr. What do you remember about that final moment when he quickly makes his sacrifice?
Joe: A couple of things happened. One, Tony has to fight and get ahold of the Gauntlet. Then our VFX supervisor, Dan DeLeeuw, who’s been one of the key collaborators and a twice-nominated VFX supervisor on Infinity War and Winter Soldier, came up with the idea that if Tony were to grab hold of the Gauntlet he could secret the stones into his armor using his nanotech. And we thought that was a great surprise for the audience. Then the second stage was, What does Tony say as his last line? And sometimes when you put too much pressure on a last line, it feels like a last line and it can be a stinker. So, we took the initial approach that he wasn’t going to say anything. He was just going to smile at Thanos and snap his fingers. Then we’re in editorial, I think in January of this year, and we were struggling with that ending. It was Ant and I and Markus and McFeely, Kevin and our editor, Jeff Ford, who’s done all four movies with us at Marvel and I think three other Marvel films. He’s one of the sort of cornerstone creatives for Marvel. And he had cut in Thanos saying the line, “I am inevitable,” and snapping his fingers, and we were all frustrated again by the lack of response from Tony.
Anthony: Having been hit by Thanos and having the stones, Tony sort of stared Thanos down as he raised his hand and snapped. It just felt like it needed more, and that’s when we started looking for a line there.
Joe: Jeff Ford was the one who said, “What if he said, ‘I am Iron Man’?” And everybody leaped to their feet. We were like, “Get the cameras out…we gotta…somebody call Robert. We’ve gotta shoot this!” And the last thing we shot on Avengers: Endgame was Robert saying, “I am Iron Man,” and snapping his fingers.
And that was done in January 2019?!
Joe: It was, yes.
It’s a wild tale that makes for a perfect ending to such a beloved character.
If you want to learn more about the making of Avengers: Endgame and read the rest of this article in Backstory Issue 37, plus a 6,500 word spoiler specific interview with screenwriters Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely about Endgame click HERE to purchase a single issue or subscribe to read us on a desktop, laptop or via our iPad app!
For more info about all the other articles in issue 37, view the Table of Contents.