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The Avengers: Infinity War Scene Josh Brolin Felt Bad About Filming

Avengers: Infinity War proved that it takes quite a lot to make Thanos cry. Usually, Marvel's massive purple Titan is as strong on the inside as he appears on the outside, especially when it comes to murder and mayhem. Think about it: He was already proudly decimating half the existing population in the universe, one planet at a time, before acquiring the Infinity Stones and powering up the Infinity Gauntlet, which offered him greater efficiency in inflicting his concept of balance. A simple snap of his fingers at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, and the universe was only half as full of living things as it was the moment before — and Thanos couldn't have been happier about it. He even sacrificed one of his adoptive daughters, Gamora (Zoe Saldana), to get his hands on the Soul Stone, which requires the seeker to offer up "that which they love" the most in the world.

Though Thanos is undeniably a genocidal maniac with skewed morals, the human who brought him to life on the big screen is thankfully the complete opposite. Sure, he's muscular and strong with a booming voice, but Thanos actor Josh Brolin is quite soft at heart. In fact, Brolin previously confessed that he had complicated feelings about a scene in which Thanos kills one of his many victims, feeling bad for the character (and the actor) on the receiving end of Thanos' ruthlessness. And no, despite the fact that killing Gamora made his character Thanos cry, that's not the one he was talking about.

Filming the scene in which Thanos kills Loki wasn't 'the most fun' Josh Brolin has ever had

In a July 2018 interview with USA Today, Brolin identified the Avengers: Infinity War scene in which Thanos brutally kills Loki (played by Tom Hiddleston) as the scene he didn't totally enjoy filming. 

The moment happens very early on in the movie, when Thanos and his pack of Black Order sycophants intercept the Grandmaster's (Jeff Goldblum) spaceship that's carrying Loki, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Heimdall (Idris Elba), the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), and other Asgardians who became refugees after Surtur destroyed Asgard at the end of Thor: Ragnarok. Loki offers to be Thanos and company's "guide" when they eventually touch down on Earth and pledges his "undying fidelity" to the Mad Titan, but he's actually deceiving him, hoping to get close enough to Thanos so he can stab and kill him. This backfires, and Thanos uses the Space Stone inside the Infinity Gauntlet to freeze Loki's arm in mid-air. With one hand, Thanos smacks Loki's knife to the ground, and with the other — the one bearing the Infinity Gauntlet, chokes and kills him. Loki's last words are to Thanos: "You will never be a god."

Brolin knew this is what had to be done for the story, but that doesn't mean he was smiles and laughter throughout filming on this particular scene. The actor felt for Tom Hiddleston, who had, at that point, been playing Loki in the MCU for the better part of a decade. "He had been with that character for so long. And he was so lauded for doing it. So choking him out wasn't the most fun thing I had ever done," Brolin told USA Today

While Brolin didn't have any fun in effectively taking away one of Hiddleston's most popular roles, he did find pleasure in the backlash it (and similar actions) have caused: "On Instagram, people are saying things like 'I hate you.' That's fantastic. I'm, like, the one guy who smiles when he sees that. It's like, 'It worked.'" 

Brolin later revealed in the same interview that he also took pleasure in a different aspect of the very same scene: Thanos beating the Hulk in a one-on-one fistfight, which he found rather satisfying. "I love that Thanos uses a knee. That was great," Brolin said.

The good news after the fact is that Avengers: Infinity War isn't the last fans get to see of Loki. The God of Mischief — albeit a version of the character who didn't die and instead escaped with the Space Stone during the Avengers' time heist in Endgame — will star in his very own series on Disney+, set to premiere on June 11, 2021.