Thanos was first seen in the MCU in the post-credits scene of The Avengers, which surprised even the most loyal Marvel fans. During the next six years, Thanos played cameos in other movies too, but, fans noted that he looks a lot different in Avengers: Infinity War compared to his previous appearances. Matt Aitken, a visual effects supervisor from the movie, clarified the benefit of this new design of the Mad Titan.
“Those sequences in Guardians is where we see him most clearly in the previous MCU films,” Aitken said. “It was a wonderful freedom to not have to match that exactly. I think it’s one thing to have a Thanos who in those scenes was definitely more stylized, holed up for those short beats that he was in those films. But when he had to be the lead character and hold film and appear in hundreds and hundreds of shots, it was great to have the latitude to refine his look, to make his facial appearance more natural, so he’s definitely more detailed and has a more natural shape to his face, to his lips, to his brow, his nose, and all those details we’re talking about in terms of the blemishes and the pores and the stubble.”
Upon Thanos’ debut in 2012, Marvel fans easily recognized him due to his comic book accurate appearance. Over the years, his look was altered to resemble a more realistic character who could portray a compelling emotional role in Avengers: Infinity War.
It is not as if only Thanos’ look has been altered over the years, and almost every MCU character has changed the appearance and costume to some extent in each new movie. However, Thanos has appeared much less and with more gaps, the differences in his case, appear more notable.
“If we’d been confined to those earlier iterations, it would have been too much of a limitation, I think, so that was never an issue,” Aitken noted. “Right from the start, Marvel recognized the need to go to the next version of Thanos, and we were never asked to match that earlier version at all.”
You can check out the latest look of Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, currently playing in theaters.
Future MCU movies include Ant-Man and the Wasp on July 6th, Captain Marvel on March 8, 2019, Avengers 4 on May 3, 2019, the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming on July 5, 2019, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3in 2020.