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'Avengers: Infinity War' directors hint at trailer release

The Russo brothers' Instagram post of the number 3 launches a three-ring circus of theories about the long-awaited footage.

"Avengers: Infinity War" fans, now you're just being baited.

The film's directors, Joe and Anthony Russo, on Monday shared a cartoon of the number 3 on their Instagram account. No explanation, no link, no caption. Just a happy-looking green 3 wearing tennis shoes.

Cue the ensuing three-ring circus.

Fans have been waiting not-so-patiently for the "Infinity War" trailer since summer, when footage (though likely not the actual trailer) was shown at San Diego Comic-Con and Disney fan event D-23. Many immediately assumed the Russos were dropping a hint about the trailer-release date.

Could it mean the trailer will be released in three days? (And if so, will the brothers Instagram a "2" on Tuesday?) Or does it mean Dec. 3? Or not until three weeks have passed? Fans are impatient to find out.

Though as some pointed out, maybe the image isn't related to the trailer at all, and is just the brothers playing with an on-edge fanbase.

It's not the Russo brothers' first tease on the subject. On Nov. 5, they shared an Orson Welles commercial for Paul Masson wine which uses the catchphrase, "we will sell no wine before its time."

While fans wait, they can peruse the cover story in Vanity Fair magazine's Holiday 2017 issue, which is all about the film (though it drops no trailer hints).

Fans seemed most excited about the four covers and a variety of other promo photos, with some wondering whether the different groupings of characters was relevant to the film's plot. (Possible spoiler warning: Unverified fan theories ahead.)

True fans will want to read the story for more Marvel movie detail, but here are a few favorite snippets (more possible spoilers ahead):

  • Marvel's "creative committee" wanted "Guardians of the Galaxy" to dump Star-Lord's beloved 1970s soundtrack (which, the article notes, later went platinum).
  • Former Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter "reportedly made the decision to scale back production of Black Widow-themed merchandise in 2015 because he believed 'girl' superhero products wouldn't sell."
  • Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, just 44, earns credit from many for Marvel's super-success. "At the heart of Kevin is a real fanboy," actress Scarlett Johansson told the magazine. But Feige was rejected from USC film school "five or six times," so take heart, late bloomers!
  • Feige does wish Marvel had made the first woman-centered superhero movie, and "got chills" recounting the No Man's Land scene from DC's "Wonder Woman."  But don't forget Marvel has its own superheroine movie coming up, with Brie Larson starring in "Captain Marvel" in 2019. "Captain Marvel is a very different type of movie (from 'Wonder Woman'')," Feige said.
  • The Marvel security team wrapped the Vanity Fair reporter's phone in layers of protective tape so she couldn't sneak any unauthorized photos.
  • And look out for 2019's yet-untitled Avengers 4, which Feige promises will "bring things you've never seen in superhero films: a finale." The magazine surmises that might mean "a lot of dead Avengers at the hands of the villain Thanos." 

"Avengers: Infinity War" is scheduled for an April 25, 2018 release in Australia, April 27 in the UK and May 4 in the US.

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