The major event that the entire #MCU has been building towards is almost here — Avengers: Infinity War is the final showdown featuring the Avengers (and the Guardians of the Galaxy) battling against Thanos (that purple dude who pops up in post-credits sequences a lot). To say that this film is eagerly anticipated would really be an understatement. The last five years of Marvel movies have been ramping up to this, with Infinity Stones peppered through the films as we inch closer to the Avengers finally realizing who's the man behind the curtain.
Suffice it to say, every tiny piece of information we glean about #InfinityWar will be picked apart and over-analyzed until the movie is finally right in front of us on the big screen. And on that note, the latest casting call may have revealed something interesting about Infinity War — and 2017's Thor Ragnarok.
Ever since the title was released for Thor's third cinematic outing, fans have been sent into an overdrive of speculation. "Ragnarok" carries a certain weight in the #Marvel universe, and with good reason. The Norse legend is the title of a comic in which all of Asgard is destroyed — along with Thor himself. (Oh, and it's also the name of Thor's weird clone but hey, let's just brush that to the side because there's no way the movie will be about that. Besides, clones and doubles are kinda Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D's thing right now). With that in mind, this snippet of info buried in the latest Avengers: Infinity War casting call has some pretty interesting implications...
A Trip To Asgard
The official casting website AJC has listed a call for extras in Infinity War. These extras need to be bearded, comfortable with a lot of blood makeup, and crucially the email subject line must be "VIKING".
They’re looking to fill a fun background role with men and women, any ethnicity, who appear to be 18 - 50s – especially men with long hair and beards. You’ll need to be comfortable with fake blood and with wearing special effects makeup.
So, assuming that these extras are indeed intended to be Vikings of some sort, on to the wild speculation! Many websites have already reported on this as proof that Infinity War will see the Avengers (and Guardians) take an interstellar road trip to Asgard which... might be true. If that's the case, it would seem that Asgard isn't destroyed in #ThorRagnarok, which basically everyone assumes will happen at this point.
However, just because we'll see some Viking-type people in Infinity War doesn't mean everything's fine and dandy on Asgard. In fact, the stipulation that these extras need to be comfortable with "fake blood" and "special effects makeup" implies that they will be involved in some kind of battle — or post-battle — sequence. Hell, maybe this scene isn't actually set on Asgard but Valhalla, showing the Asgardian afterlife in all its rolicking, cup-smashing, eternal-feasting glory.
Asgard Will Probably Be Destroyed In Ragnarok
Which would line up neatly with Thor's vision in Age of Ultron — this sequence set in some kind of afterlife featured Heimdall warning Thor that he would bring about an end-of-days for Asgard.
Heimdall tells Thor that he will lead the Asgardians to "Hell"... or this could be "Hel", the frozen underworld from Norse mythology. However, there's no way such noble warriors as the Asgardians would go anywhere other than Valhalla... so let's just gloss over this. It's likely Joss Whedon threw "Hell" in because it sounded more dramatic and accessible than "Valhalla". Moving on.
So, it seems more likely that the "Viking" extras needed for Infinity War are actually for a sequence depicting the Asgardian apocalypse — perhaps a battleground, or an afterlife scene. Director Joe Russo even hinted as much back in April 2016, when he confirmed that Thor would appear in the third Avengers movie.
"I'm excited to work with Thor. They're doing some really interesting stuff with 'Ragnarok' and where he's gonna be at the beginning of 'Infinity War' is gonna be a very interesting place and I think very profound. I think he's gonna have a real emotional motivation after that."
"Real emotional motivation", eh? That certainly sounds like a tragic event will occur in Ragnarok, but that Thor will survive his third solo movie. Russo's comment may even suggest that Thanos is indirectly responsible for Asgard's destruction, providing Thor with the "motivation" he needs to take the Mad Titan down. Put this together with the new casting call for blood-covered Vikings and we've pretty much got unofficial confirmation that Ragnarok will see a dramatic end for Thor's idyllic home.
Or maybe everything will be fine and dandy and the Avengers (and Guardians) are just chilling out with some happy, blood-spattered Asgardian warriors before they take on Thanos. At least we haven't got too long to wait until we find out!