Abandon all hope, ye who prayed for any of Netflix's Defenders to show up in Avengers: Infinity War. It's not going to happen. But not with out good reason. The logistics simply made it impossible, as Avengers 3 co-director Joe Russo explained in a recent interview.
While the characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies and TV shows do actually inhabit the same universe, there hasn't been any crossover of TV characters into the movie world. There has been some crossover of movie characters into shows like ABC's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but for those hoping for Netflix characters like Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist joining the fight against Thanos (Josh Brolin), director Joe Russo said that isn't going to happen. Here's what the filmmaker had to say during an on-set interview.
"We have considered everything. But the trick is that we already have at least sixty characters with whom we must tell a story! And it's hard enough to communicate with Taika Waititi, Ryan Coogler, Scott Derrickson, Peyton Reed and James Gunn at the same time, not to add all the showrunners and TV crews to this. The latter is also led by totally different people. So it's practically impossible. Our job is to focus on the Marvel film world and offer a satisfying climax."
The director's comment about the TV universe being, "led by totally different people" is a reference to a new deal that Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige struck with Disney a few years ago, where he reports directly to Disney Studios chief Alan Horn, instead of to Marvel Entertainment CEO Ike Perlmutter, with the movie side of Marvel being completely integrated into Disney. Perlmutter and Marvel still control the TV side of the MCU, which is likely one of the other reasons why there are no crossovers from the TV side to the movie side, at least as of now.
There has been a lot of talk about how many characters will actually be featured in Infinity War, which started way back in 2016, when the Russo Brothers revealed, during a Captain America: Civil War Q&A that there were upwards of 67 characters in Avengers: Infinity War, which made headlines, even after the filmmakers walked back that specific number. We likely won't get an official character count until after Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on April 27, and it remains to be seen how many of these characters will survive and get to fight another day in Avengers 4.
While the Netflix TV shows have been successful, with Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist each getting renewed for multiple seasons, along with The Defenders crossover series, they're still not on the same level as the hugely-successful movies. With Avengers: Infinity War and next year's Avengers 4 slated to bring the MCU as we know it to a close, it's possible that there may be opportunities for crossovers in Phase 4 and beyond, but nothing is set in stone at this time. Director Joe Russo made these new revelations during a new on-set interview with Premiere, as fans get ready for Avengers: Infinity War on April 27, which is shaping up to be the biggest movie of the year.