When our team was given the opportunity to create the Main On End title sequence for Marvel Studios' Avengers: Endgame, it wasn't lost on us how huge this could be. Before anyone saw a second of footage for Avengers: Endgame, everyone knew it would be one of the biggest movies in the world.
Visual Effects Director at Perception, Doug Appleton, explained the mood in the studio. “Honestly, once the excitement died down, it was a bit intimidating. How do you end the movie that ends the story that started 22 movies ago? So, when we talked to Marvel Studios, and Kevin Feige had the idea to give this sequence a 'curtain call’ kind of feel, everything just clicked into place.”
We knew we had to create a sequence that lived up to the hype. We believed that the best way forward was not to create something bigger and splashier but to go smaller and more intimate. We wanted something that felt personal, that felt sentimental, that reminded you of the last ten years of Marvel cinematic history, and that was truly a love letter to the fans.
John LePore, Perception's Chief Creative Director, stated, "At the end of these films, fans aren't starving for 'motion design'—they just want more time with these characters. We took inspiration from the fandom in general, especially fan-made supercuts, and decided to make a sequence that celebrated the journey to get to this point."
We proposed several directions, all with the goal of pulling aside the curtain to reveal the actors beneath the characters. Marvel Studios didn't simply want to celebrate the movies, they wanted to celebrate the actors that made these movies so beloved, especially the original six Avengers.
The winning idea was a combination of two different executions: first, each actor front and center while footage of their performance is projected on top of them, and second, an idea from Marvel Studios' President Kevin Feige, drawing the actors' signatures over footage of their characters for a more personal and intimate connection.
MAIN ON END BREAKDOWN
The first big shift in perspective occurs when the sequence progresses from crew to cast. In this new section, the footage becomes more distinct, showing tight intimate croppings of footage—a hand, a mask, a symbol—that help make these characters feel larger than life.
RESEARCHING TIME TRAVEL THEORY
Another hat our team often wears on Marvel Studios’ films is that of conceptual development consultants. On Avengers: Endgame, we were brought in about 3 years before the release of the film to work with the production team and writers on the concept of time travel in the story they were telling.
While the creative team at Marvel Studios consulted with quantum physicists about the practicality of time travel, we were focused on the mechanics of how it might work, what it might look like, and how you would explain it. We also assisted the filmmakers with exploring ideas surrounding scientific considerations, technology-based concepts, and potential narrative influences. What started as some brainstorming exercises lead to some fascinating discussions with the Directors, the Writers and the Marvel Studios Executive team.