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Josh Brolin Reveals the Reason He Agreed To Play Thanos

Josh Brolin Reveals the Reason He Agreed To Play Thanos

Thanos actor Josh Brolin says he was keen to portray Thanos because the mad Titan battled all the superheroes in both the films.

Thanos star Josh Brolin claims he agreed to play the part because his character takes on all the superheroes in Avengers: Infinity War and the sequel – the highest-grossing movie of all time – Avengers: Endgame.

Brolin previously played Thanos through a fleeting cameo in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), later returning in the mid-credit scene for Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015). He was then promoted to the leading character of Avengers: Infinity War, adding depth and empathy to the character as he ultimately tracks down the Infinity Stones.

Brolin’s Thanos is involved in a series of spectacular fights in Avengers: Infinity War, initially battling against Iron Man, Dr. Strange, Spider-Man, and the entire Guardians of the Galaxy on Titan, before appearing in Wakanda and confronting the majority of the Avengers.

Once he arrives, he destroys Vision, beats Scarlet Witch and Thor, and eventually fulfills his goal of a ‘snap’ eliminating half of life in the entire universe.

Josh Brolin played arguably the most iconic supervillain in history, Thanos.

Josh Brolin played arguably the most iconic supervillain in history, Thanos.
Source: Vulture

Brolin made his return as Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, once again going toe to toe against all the surviving Avengers, most significantly later in the film when he battles all the Avengers in one of the greatest and most dramatic cinematic battles ever waged at the conclusion of the film.

Now Brolin admits he would have passed on the opportunity to play the part of Thanos if the supervillain was expected to face off just one Avenger.

Talking to renowned cinematographer Roger Deakins on his podcast Team Deakins, Brolin revealed that when he signed the contract to star as Thanos, he was handed a character guide and it confirmed Thanos was going to take on all the Avengers in the Infinity War saga.

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Brolin also admits when he first signed up to the part, it was only a cameo, which didn’t pay much.

I turned down quite a bit of those things and again people were like “money!” When I said yes to Avengers it was a small thing. It was basically a cameo, so there was not a lot of money involved. So that wasn’t the reason. But when they came to me they gave me a big bible. I loved that it was all [of them]. If it had been one of the Avengers – and I don’t mean this, I probably shouldn’t say this but I’m just gonna say it – I probably wouldn’t have done it. But the fact that it was all the Avengers against this one guy. I liked that aspect of it.

Brolin’s remarks indicate not only was there a vision for Thanos to battle every Avenger which was ingrained into the character from an early period but also the fact that Marvel Studios was obviously not confident they would carry through on those ambitions from the outset.

By just signing him for one brief appearance in Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel was leaving them an open option in case the Infinity War saga didn’t play the way they expected it to.


Luckily for us fans, the story met a fitting conclusion in phase 4 while Brolin returned for future appearances.

It’s also fascinating to recall Brolin was clearly not interested in portraying a generic villain in a lesser Marvel movie but was holding out for a more dynamic and strong antagonist role to make his superhero film debut.

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As it turned out, the part actually turned out to be the biggest supervillain role in movie history, so his decision worked out in the end.

It would have been intriguing to see, though, who would have played the part had Brolin passed up the opportunity, and how different Infinity War and Endgame would have panned out.

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Last modified: October 6, 2020