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Endgame Director Addresses Vision's Fate

Contains spoilers for Avengers: Endgame

Avengers: Endgame resolved a lot of questions that went unanswered after Avengers: Infinity War, followed up on breadcrumbs sprinkled across past Marvel Cinematic Universe entries, and paid off plenty of plot points and character arcs that the franchise established years ago. In a lot of ways, the film lived up to its name: it signified the endgame for several heroes and their stories. But a few threads were left dangling in the open air, going largely unaddressed in Endgame. These involve the deaths of characters who weren't dusted at the end of Infinity War but died pre-Snap — like Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), and Vision (Paul Bettany). 

Loki, who died early on in Infinity War when Thanos (Josh Brolin) strangled him, and Gamora, whom Thanos sacrificed in order to obtain the Soul Stone, both appeared in Avengers: Endgame thanks to the film's time-travel-focused plot. Vision, however, didn't. This left viewers wondering if there is a chance the android could ever return to the silver screen, or if he is gone for good. 

Avengers: Endgame director Joe Russo has the answer. 

Speaking during the Q&A event An Evening with Joe Russo, hosted by ComicBook.com's Brandon Davis at Russo's restaurant Duello in Los Angeles, the filmmaker addressed Vision's fate. Russo said that Vision, who was killed in Avengers: Infinity War as Thanos retrieved the Mind Stone from the hero's forehead, is dead — at least to the best of his knowledge. 

"Vision? He's dead as far as I know," Russo explained.

Now, before anyone starts getting teary-eyed, remember that Marvel definitely still has plans for Vision. Russo maintained some ambiguity around Vision's alive-or-dead status, avoiding saying he's 100-percent a goner, and that's likely because Vision actor Paul Bettany is set to reprise his role for WandaVision, the forthcoming limited series scheduled to hit the Disney+ streaming service sometime in the near future.

Though Scarlet Witch actress Elizabeth Olsen teased a 1950s time setting for WandaVision, neither Disney nor Marvel have confirmed whether the show truly does take place decades before before Infinity War and Endgame, or if the main action is set after those two movies and the retro setting comes when Vision and Scarlet Witch go on some kind of time-travel adventure. This considered, there stands a chance that Vision could come back to life for WandaVision if the series is set post-Endgame. If it's genuinely set years in the past, that could mean Vision is dead in the MCU movie canon but still exists in the past. 

And perhaps that's the better of the two options. 

As heart-wrenching as it was to watch Vision perish at the end of Avengers: Infinity War — with Scarlet Witch making the decision to end his life by destroying the Mind Stone before Thanos could get to it, and then the Mad Titan reversing that effort and doing the damage himself — his death was incredibly impactful and might be better left untouched. As Infinity War and Endgame co-director Anthony Russo once noted, Vision "achieved full humanity" when Scarlet Witch dismantled the Mind Stone and killed him in the process. 

"One of the most tragic moments in the movie and one of our favorite moments of the movie, of course, is when she has to take his life in order to stop Thanos from getting the stone by destroying the stone that's in his head. And to watch those two characters approach that moment in the way that they did [is] really one of the most inspiring parts of the story for us," Russo told Wired. "Paul Bettany has always said he thinks about Vision as his primary motivation is just someone who's seeking to understand humanity, and I think that with that final gesture, Vision really achieved full humanity."

Thanos utilizing the Time Stone to undo Scarlet Witch's efforts and kill Vision himself is all the more devastating when you view Vision as not an android but as an entity who has finally become human. Bringing him back from the dead might undermine that arc and diminish some of the meaning behind his death. 

It could also go against something Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige previously said about how the Disney+ series and future MCU movies are linked: "One of the things we're most excited about is that these will be major storylines set in the MCU with ramifications that will be felt both through the other Disney+ series we're producing and our features on the big screen." If this goes both ways, if previously released MCU movies have an impact on the forthcoming Disney+ shows just as the series will have on future films, that suggests that Vision's death in Avengers: Infinity War will influence the story of WandaVision. On the flip side, should WandaVision feature a very-much-alive and in-the-present Vision, it might mean that Vision has a place in Phase 4 of the MCU

For the time being, though, anything can happen. Whether Marvel keeps him dead or revives him from the great beyond, Marvelites probably haven't seen the last of Vision.