The Russo Brothers' Next Marvel Movie In Question After Scarlett Johansson's Disney Battle

By Aeron Mer Eclarinal Updated:
The Russo Brothers Marvel Studios

The Russo brothers have been an integral part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The directing duo made their MCU debut during 2014's Captain America: The Winter Soldier, delivering a solid entry to the Star-Spangled franchise. After their impressive introduction, the pair went on to cap off the trilogy by taking over directing duties for 2016's Captain America: Civil War, a film that brought back a good chunk of Earth's Mightiest Heroes.  

After delivering a conclusion to the Captain America trilogy, the Russos went on to direct the last two Avengers films, namely Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. The pair had the massive responsibility of juggling everyone in the MCU to fit in the narrative, but many would agree that they managed to accomplish that task with flying colors, as evidenced by the multi-billion-dollar haul of the said films at the box office.

As the MCU heads into the post-Infinity Saga chapter, it's reasonable to assume that the Russos will return to the franchise, especially after they admitted that they are in constant communication with the studio. Now, it seems that the directors' Marvel future hit a snag due to a new report. 

Avengers: Endgame's Directors Hit an Impasse with Marvel

Russos Marvel

The Wall Street Journal shared that Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo, the sibling duo who often go by the Russo Brothers, have reached an impasse in negotiations to direct another movie with Marvel Studios. 

The outlet pointed out that the current fiasco between Scarlett Johansson and Disney left the pair unsure of how they would be paid for their next film and how it would be distributed to audiences. 

The Russos declined to comment to the WSJ on the matter.

What's Next For The Russo Brothers?

The Russo Brothers' next MCU project is still unknown at this point, but many would agree that this latest news is a worrisome development for Marvel Studios, especially after the directing duo's success with the superhero franchise. 

Still, it's understandable that the Russos are unsure of the payment and release strategy of their upcoming film, considering now that the pandemic has become a focal point when it comes to the studio's decisions for their projects.

Given that the pair were already in negotiations, their MCU project was likely eyeing a tentative 2024 or 2025 release date. It remains to be seen if the COVID-19 pandemic will still be predominant worldwide during that time frame, but it's possible that the Russos are just taking a step back to reassess the whole situation. 

As for the project the Russos are negotiating for, there's a strong chance that this is likely the heavily-teased Secret Wars crossover event. The directors addressed the possibility of directing the aforementioned project, with Anthony admitting that "it would be the biggest movie you could possibly imagine." Given the scale of Secret Wars, it's reasonable to assume that this is the MCU's next Avengers film. 

If the Russos decided not to return to helm another Avengers film, it would allow other directors to take over the Earth's Mightiest franchise, giving a fresh take on how the team would be visualized on the big screen. Still, many would approve if the Russos stayed under the Marvel brand for the foreseeable future, so hopefully this whole contract negotiation ia just be a setback that is saved by both parties.

- About The Author: Aeron Mer Eclarinal
Aeron is a news/features writer and Content Lead for The Direct who has been working for the site since March 2020. From writing about the inter-connectivity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to having an extended knowledge about DC TV's Arrowverse, Aeron's expertise has since expanded into the realm of reality TV, K-drama, animated, and live-action shows from Netflix,  Disney+, Prime Video, MGM+, Peacock, Paramount+, and Max. When he isn't writing and watching all things MCU, Aeron is heavily invested with the NBA (go Celtics!) and occasionally watches thrilling matches in the WWE.