Jules Hudson seeks out the World War II stories of ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
Runtime: 30 minutes
How We Won the War - Avengers: Infinity War - Netflix
Avengers: Infinity War is a 2018 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2012's The Avengers and 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron, and the nineteenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and features an ensemble cast including Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Don Cheadle, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana, Josh Brolin, and Chris Pratt. In Avengers: Infinity War, the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy attempt to stop Thanos from amassing the all-powerful Infinity Stones. The film was announced in October 2014 as Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1. The Russo brothers came on board to direct in April 2015 and by May, Markus and McFeely had signed on to write the script for the film, which drew inspiration from Jim Starlin's 1991 The Infinity Gauntlet comic and Jonathan Hickman's 2013 Infinity comic. In 2016, Marvel shortened the title to Avengers: Infinity War. Filming began in January 2017 at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayette County, Georgia, and lasted until July 2017, shooting back-to-back with an untitled direct sequel. Additional filming took place in Scotland, England, the Downtown Atlanta area, and New York City. With an estimated budget in the range of $316–400 million, it is one of the most expensive films ever made. Avengers: Infinity War held its world premiere on April 23, 2018 in Los Angeles and was released in the United States on April 27, 2018, in IMAX and 3D. The film received praise for the performances of the cast (particularly Brolin's), visual effects, emotional weight of the story, and action sequences. It became the fourth film and the first superhero film to gross over $2 billion worldwide, making it the fourth highest-grossing film of all time and in the United States and Canada, as well as the highest-grossing film of 2018. In its opening weekend, it grossed $641 million worldwide and $258 million domestically, setting the records for the highest-grossing openings for both. Infinity War became the fastest film in history to reach a worldwide gross of $1 billion, doing so in 11 days, and the second fastest film to reach $2 billion worldwide in 48 days, behind Avatar (2009). The untitled sequel is set to be released on May 3, 2019.
How We Won the War - Marketing - Netflix
In May 2017, Robert Downey Jr. and his philanthropic organization Random Act Funding partnered with Omaze to initiate a contest to benefit the organization. A randomly chosen winner from those that donated would receive an Infinity War set visit. A life-sized statue of Thanos, created by Legacy Effects, was on display at D23 Expo 2017, alongside statues of the Black Order / “Children of Thanos”: Corvus Glaive, Proxima Midnight, Ebony Maw, and Cull Obsidian. Additionally, Feige, Joe Russo, Downey, Brolin, Bettany, Olsen, Klementieff, Gillan, Bautista, Cheadle, Mackie, Cumberbatch, Stan, Holland, Boseman, Ruffalo and Hemsworth appeared at D23 Expo to present a clip highlighting the 10 years of MCU films, along with footage from Infinity War. The footage, which was screened exclusively for the panel, received strong audience reaction, with fans “literally on their feet and jumping as the footage played”. Julia Alexander of Polygon commented, “to say that there was quite a bit happening in the trailer would be one hell of an understatement, but that's not what got me excited about the promises Infinity War may deliver upon. Seeing Spider-Man in the same movie as Iron Man, Thor, Star-Lord and the Scarlet Witch finally feels like Marvel has made the movie it always wanted to—and the one we've always wanted to see. For nearly ten years we dreamt of this reality and to see it play across a massive screen... it was impossible to not feel emotional.” CinemaBlend's Eric Eisenberg said the footage left him “literally shaking”, with the film looking “like it could be one of the most epic blockbusters ever created”, concluding “the hype [for the film] most definitely feels very, very real”. Haleigh Foutch for Collider said, “It looks dark and dramatic, and utterly epic. It's clear Marvel is trying to do something different here... to pay off a decade's worth of narrative and world-building. While it's impossible to tell from two minutes work of footage, it certainly looks like that gamble paid off.” The D23 footage was also shown at the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con International. Due to the two convention presentations, Avengers: Infinity War generated over 90,000 new conversations on social media from July 17 to 23, the third-most during that time period behind Thor: Ragnarok and Justice League, according to comScore and its PreAct service. Infinity War stayed in third the following week, with over 41,000 new social media conversations, behind Ragnarok and It. By the week of October 16, Infinity War had generated over 679,000 total social media conversations. To promote the release of the film's first trailer, Marvel released “a retrospective video looking back at some of its best trailers” since Iron Man, “paired with fan reaction videos to those trailers”. The first trailer for Avengers: Infinity War debuted on Good Morning America on November 29, 2017. Josh Spiegel of The Hollywood Reporter said, “The trailer promises, in many ways, exactly what anyone with a passing familiarity with superhero movies would expect...” but “the most important part of the trailer is how it carefully, deliberately introduces the notion that the Infinity War films are going to function as a passing of the torch, from one set of Avengers to a newer group.” Scott Mendelson writing, for Forbes, noted that even though the trailer was not much different from the convention footage screened earlier in the year, it was “damn impressive. Moreover, it uses Nick Fury's big 'Avengers Initiative' speech, along with Alan Silvestri's Avengers theme, to excellent effect.” Conversely to Mendelson, Alexander commented on the different marketing strategy for the film between the convention footage scenes and the trailer scenes, feeling the “two couldn't be more different”. She noted how the convention footage (“meant to please a crowd running on little sleep and jittery with anticipation”) was released between Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Thor: Ragnarok, and “[i]t made sense to use Thor and the Guardians to hype up [Infinity War]” because “Marvel relied on the anticipation of Thor: Ragnarok and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2's success to excite fans, and footage of older movies set to classic Marvel scores as a way to drive home how this movie is an event in itself.” Conversely, the trailer (“designed to explain what's about to happen, teasing it out with additional background”) heavily featured Black Panther and Wakanda, which Alexander said could not have been done earlier, without the additional marketing for Black Panther that happened after the conventions to provide additional context. Gael Cooper of CNET observed that the trailer was viewed nearly 500,000 times in its first 15 minutes after it was posted on YouTube, but questioned if the trailer broke the site after the view counter appeared to be stuck at 467,331. The trailer was viewed 230 million times in its first 24 hours, becoming the most viewed trailer in that time period, surpassing the record of It. In January 2018, Marvel Comics published a two-issue prequel comic titled Avengers: Infinity War Prelude, which serves as a bridge between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. A commercial for Infinity War aired during Super Bowl LII. The ad generated the most social media buzz out of all the films advertised during the Super Bowl, according to comScore and United Talent Agency; it was viewed 17.6 million times across YouTube and Facebook. On February 27, 2018, Disney and Marvel announced the Marvel: The Universe Unites charity campaign leading to the release of merchandise for the film on March 3. The week-long event saw stars from the film create social media challenges to provide funds and raise awareness for charities that support children and families impacted by serious illness. If their collective posts reached 1 million likes, Marvel said they would make a $250,000 donation to Starlight Children's Foundation. Additionally, Disney planned to donate 10% of sales of all Marvel products purchased at Disney Stores in the United States and online on the weekend of March 3 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, up to $50,000. Hasbro donated $1 million worth of cash and products to Give Kids the World Village and Funko made a $1 million toy donation to Starlight. A second trailer was released on March 16, 2018, which earned over 1 million views on YouTube in less than three hours after it was released. Alyssa Rosenberg of The Washington Post was not overly enthused about another superhero film having “special-effects-heavy villains, or the sight of yet another mysterious object hanging over the Manhattan skyline”, but felt the trailer made her realize “that I'm actually looking forward to seeing [the characters of the MCU] get to know each other”. Josh Spiegel of The Hollywood Reporter agreed with Rosenberg about the potential for character interactions, noting the trailer “suggests that some of these meetings are going to keep up the playful tone of recent MCU movies”. He continued, “It is arguably gimmicky to pile up all of the crossover-style introductions or combinations of heroes in a movie like this, like a superpowered version of two well liked TV shows crossing over primarily in the hopes of getting more viewers to pay attention. But the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe is built on a foundation of these heroes existing within the same space, so their eventual meetings have a level of anticipation that exceeds that of watching them face off against Thanos.” The second trailer was viewed 179 million times in the first 24 hours, the third-most viewed trailer in that time period, behind the first trailer for the film and It, while also becoming the biggest release for a second trailer, surpassing Beauty and the Beast (128 million views). A week before the film's release, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai was lit up each night for the film, counting down to its release. Marvel also featured tie-in events across seven of their mobile games to promote the film. In early May 2018, Marvel and Epic Games announced the “Infinity Gauntlet Limited Time Mashup” mode for Fortnite Battle Royale, where players can find the Infinity Gauntlet hidden on the game map and become Thanos with added abilities. The Russo brothers were fans of Fortnite and approached Donald Mustard, the worldwide creative director of Epic Games, about the potential for a crossover between the properties. On November 20, 2018, Little, Brown and Company will publish Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War: Thanos – Titan Consumed, written by Barry Lyga. Despite not existing within Marvel Studios' MCU canon, the novel explores the origins of Thanos before the events of the film. Lyga noted he spoke with Marvel Studios to get an “outline of who Thanos is and what he means to the movies”, and “was given great latitude and a free hand [in some areas of the story], while in others I had to tip-toe very carefully through the MCU”. Additional marketing partners for the film included Coca-Cola, Quicken Loans and their Rocket Mortgage service, the Infiniti QX50 (which is also featured in the film), Ziploc, Go-Gurt, Yoplait, Synchrony Bank, American Airlines, and Stand Up to Cancer. The partners created television commercials “inspired by or featuring the film's characters and themes”, interactive digital initiatives, and robust in-store presences at numerous retailers. Duracell, Unilever, Quaker Oats Company, Chevron, and Samsung ran promotions in smaller markets. Coca-Cola, Ziploc, Go-Gurt, and Yoplait created special packaging in support of the film, with Synchrony implementing a “Save Like a Hero” campaign, and Stand Up to Cancer and American Airlines launching a national campaign with a PSA starring Johansson and Hemsworth. In the United Kingdom, OnePlus released an Infinity War edition for one of their smartphones. Deadline Hollywood estimated the media value was $150 million, the largest for any Marvel film, with Coca-Cola contributing an estimated $40 million.
How We Won the War - References - Netflix