Speaking with Near Mint Condition, Thanos creator Jim Starlin talked about the scrapped Avengers: Infinity War sequence involving Josh Brolin’s Mad Titan.
Starlin first shared that he “had to keep [his] mouth shut” for a year-and-a-half since Infinity War screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely told him everything that will happen in the two Avengers films:
“It was kind of funny. Just before ‘[Avengers:] Infinity War’ came out, I have been in contact with Joe Russo, one of the directors. And when I was on the set, Markus and McFeely told me everything, what they were doing in the two movies, they ran me down this hallway that had all the concept paintings up on the wall. And so for a year-and-a-half, I had to keep my mouth shut.”
One month before Infinity War premiered in theaters, Starlin shared that he received an email from director Joe Russo saying that the 45-minute sequence of Thanos “getting the first [Infinity Stone]” was cut out at the beginning of the movie.
The Marvel Comics scribe also pointed out that it was cut since the studio didn’t want to “spend the money on the [visual] effects” and they didn’t want it to be as long as Avengers: Endgame:
“But about a month before the movie came out, I got an email or something from Joe saying, ‘the 45 minutes of Thanos that we had at the beginning of Infinity War, we had it cut.’ There was a whole sequence of him getting the first gem and they had to cut that out. They shot it, but they never wanted to spend the money on the effects and they didn’t want the movie to be as long as the second one [Endgame] was. They didn’t realize it was going to be quite the hit it was.”
It is unknown if Starlin is exaggerating with his confirmation that the sequence is 45 minutes long. It’s possible that the scene that was shot was closer to 15 to 20 minutes, with the 45 minutes serving as the original plan for the whole introduction.
When Near Mint Condition noted that he would love a director’s cut of Infinity War, Starlin agreed, saying that Marvel planned on including the lengthy sequence “for the DVD” but it didn’t happen:
Near Mint Condition: “Oh, I would love for them to do a director’s cut.”
Starlin: “Oh well, I wish they would too. They had planned on doing some of that for the DVD and then they didn’t.”
Will Marvel Studios Release Thanos’ Deleted Xander Scene?
It’s unfortunate that Marvel Studios decided to cut the sequence involving Thanos’ quest to obtain the Power Stone from the Nova Corps on Xandar.
While the Avengers threequel did reference the Mad Titan’s destruction of the planet through dialogue, it would’ve been exciting to witness the full might of the MCU villain right at the beginning of the movie.
Still, given that Starlin confirmed that they shot the said sequence, it’s possible that the 45-minute scene exists somewhere in the archives.
Considering that it is heavily rumored that a Nova project is in development, there is a good chance that the said sequence will likely be included in the character’s introduction to further expand the fall of the Nova Corps and Xandar and Thanos’ domination over the planet.
On the flip side, if Marvel decides to re-release Infinity War on the big screen at some point or an extended edition is in the cards, then this cut sequence could easily be included to give diehard fans another worthwhile experience.