The Russo Brothers On Welcoming Deadpool, X-Men Into Marvel Universe, Disney’s Take On ‘Infinity War’ Ending, Injecting Politics Into Blockbusters

Filmmakers Joe and Anthony Russo believe they will soon be orchestrating an even bigger flock of A-list talent on screen as the Disney-Fox merger introduces the X-Men and Deadpool to the Marvel Universe.

“I’m sure of it,” Joe Russo said. “The acquisition of Fox is showing us where the future of the business is going to go.” Disney CEO Bob Iger has had a “historic” run over the past dozen years, he added. “We haven’t talked to him about when he is going to do it,” but enlarging the Marvel tent and cross-pollinating characters is a key aspect of the $71.3 billion deal.

Avengers Infinity War
The Avengers: Infinity War Disney

The brothers made the comments during a rare public appearance during Business Insider Ignition. Moderator Janice Min, a former magazine editor and now a content executive at Jeffrey Katzenberg’s mobile video startup Quibi, invited them to “break the Internet” and reveal the title of the just-wrapped fourth Avengers installment. They politely declined. “We’d like to, but we won’t,” Joe Russo smiled.

They did hold forth amply on many other topics, including the state of their new production boutique AGBO, the viability of the two-hour feature film, and how they smuggle political ideas into the biggest of big-canvas productions.

Although the brothers have never been Michael Moore-like in terms of expressing their politics on screen, they do try to incorporate their point of view on social and political themes, even in vast, hyper-commercial Marvel franchises. “We try not to be dogmatic about it,” Anthony Russo said, “but we try to run at those ideas of whatever is giving us nightmares.”

In a fantasy context, audiences are “one step removed” from the anxious times unfolding in the U.S. and other…


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