When designing the Outriders for Avengers: Infinity War, Marvel Studios found itself concerned that the creatures too closely resembled another Marvel Comics property, Venom. Marvel ended up making some minor changes to the Outriders to prevent that from happening.
In Avengers: Infinity War, the Avengers go up against Thanos who seeks to collect the Infinity Stones for his Gauntlet that will give him an unlimited amount of power. In an attempt to obtain the final Stone in Wakanda, Thanos sends in his army of four-armed creatures, the Outriders. The Avengers battle the Outriders, but ultimately fail in stopping Thanos from ripping the Mind Stone away from Vision. Thanos collects the stones in his Gauntlet, which gives him an ultimate power that allows him to erase half of the universe’s inhabitants from existence with the snap of his fingers.
In the Marvel comics, the Outriders look a little different than they do on film. Marvel worried about the creatures looking too much like Venom, a symbiote alien creature whose film rights are currently owned by Sony Pictures. The resemblance is uncanny in the comics, after all. Although both the Outriders and Venom appear in the Marvel comics, the movie rights for Venom belong to Sony. So Marvel had to come up with a way to make the Outriders look different than their comic book counterpart. In the book, Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War — The Art of the Movie, concept artist Jerad Marantz spoke about the process of re-imagining the Outriders for the film.
“After looking at the source material, I wanted them to have a biomechanics quality to them. There was concern that the Outriders may look too much like a Venom symbiotic, and the challenge was to ensure they had a unique look. To achieve that, I decided to go biomechanical with them and incorporate the same shapes that are used in Thanos’ armor and Proxima Midnight’s and Corvus Glaive’s.”
The book also shows concept art of Hulk, suggesting he would appear in the movie. As most Marvel fans know, though, Bruce Banner had trouble in Infinity War getting Hulk to come out to play. Ultimately, Bruce fought against Thanos in the Hulkbuster suit, which gave him much of the same strength of the Hulk. The book also shows off art imagining Red Skull as a ghost, which would make sense due to his exposure to the Soul Stone. However, he appeared as a solid being in the movie, so it seems that Marvel eventually shot down some of the original concept art ideas for its Infinity War characters.
Marvel fans are currently awaiting the return of the Avengers (or what’s left of them) in the fourth Avengers film, which releases in 2019. Infinity War left fans with many questions, including the biggest one of all: who will save the universe from Thanos? And just how exactly will half the world come back to life? Hopefully fans will get answers to those questions in next year’s Avengers 4.