With Daredevil and Jessica Jones established on the small screen, not to mention the imminent arrival of Luke Cage in his own standalone series, there has been hushed talk of The Defenders – a New York supergroup that also makes room for Iron Fist – making the jump into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, particularly in time for the all-encompassing Avengers: Infinity War.
Such a crossover would naturally take screentime to build towards, lest it wind up feeling forced for the sake of fan service. But according to Captain America: Civil War co-director Anthony Russo, including The Defenders for Infinity War in any capacity is “complicated.”
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Quizzed by SUPER Interessante (via Comic Book Movie) on the very question of the TV/Movie crossover, Russo candidly explains that, as storytellers, there is only so much film directors can do when it comes to characters that may or may not be owned by Marvel.
As opposed to being given free reign over the entire catalogue of costumed heroes, Russo and Co. must work within the parameters that Marvel, Sony, Fox and other companies have laid out. And though that may be disappointing, it’s fair to say that the likes of Daredevil and Jessica Jones almost work better as standalone series, referencing Marvel’s Cinematic Universe in passing rather than each character making the jump into a feature film to rub shoulders with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes – or vice versa
“It’s complicated. When we start to serialize the telling of stories it’s difficult. You have to have a lot of control and focus on the course of history. The films are controlled by a group led by Kevin Feige, so they function as a unit. Other products, even if they are from Marvel, are controlled by others. Then there is the possibility of a crossover, but it’s more complicated. It is a smaller scale version of the problem that exists when remembering that Fox holds the rights to some of Marvel’s most popular characters, as does Sony and others. As storytellers, we only have control over what happens in Marvel movies, but everything is possible, Spider-Man (whose rights were held by Sony) became possible!”
Avengers: Infinity War will bring the curtain down on Marvel’s Phase Three with a double whammy: Part 1 hits on May 4, 2018, while Part 2 closes the book on May 9, 2019.