Russo brothers

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Russo brothers
Joe Russo & Anthony Russo by Gage Skidmore.jpg
Joe (left) and Anthony Russo in July 2019
BornAnthony Russo
(1970-02-03) February 3, 1970 (age 50)
Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
Joseph Russo
(1971-07-18) July 18, 1971 (age 49)
Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
Occupation
  • Directors
  • producers
  • screenwriters
  • actors
Years active1994–present
RelativesBasil Russo (father)

Anthony Russo (born February 3, 1970) and Joseph Russo (born July 18, 1971), collectively known as the Russo brothers (ROO-so), are American directors, producers, screenwriters, and actors. They direct most of their work together.

They are best known for directing four films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), and Avengers: Endgame (2019). Endgame grossed over $2.798 billion worldwide, becoming the highest-grossing film of all time (not adjusted for inflation). The brothers have also worked as directors and/or producers on the comedy series Arrested Development (2003–2005), Community (2009–2014), and Happy Endings (2011–2012). They won a Primetime Emmy Award for Arrested Development.

Early life[edit]

Anthony Russo (born February 3, 1970)[1][2] and Joseph Russo (born July 18, 1971)[2][3] were born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, the sons of Patricia (née Gallupoli) and attorney and judge Basil Russo.[4] Their parents were both of Italian descent.[5] Their paternal and maternal families immigrated from Sicily and Abruzzo, respectively, fleeing poverty and settling in Ohio to work its steel mills.[4] They attended Benedictine High School.[6] Joe graduated from the University of Iowa and majored in English and writing, while Anthony graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and majored in business before switching to English.[7][8][9]

Career[edit]

The Russo brothers were graduate students at Case Western Reserve University (where Anthony studied law and Joe studied acting) when they began directing, writing, and producing their first feature, Pieces. They financed the film with student loans and credit cards.[10] After viewing Pieces at the Slamdance Film Festival, Steven Soderbergh approached the duo and offered to produce their next film, along with his producing partner George Clooney.[10] This project was the crime comedy Welcome to Collinwood, starring William H. Macy, Sam Rockwell, and Clooney.

FX network executive Kevin Reilly hired the Russos to direct the pilot for the series Lucky, having liked the pair's work on Collinwood. Ron Howard was a fan of the pilot, and he had a hand in hiring the brothers to direct the pilot for Fox's Arrested Development.[10] The brothers won a Primetime Emmy Award for their work on the episode.

In 2006, the Russo brothers returned to film, directing the Owen Wilson comedy You, Me and Dupree. The film grossed $130 million worldwide.[10] For the 2007–08 TV season, the Russos joined the crew of the ABC series Carpoolers as executive producers and directors. The brothers served as executive producers and directors on the first several seasons of the NBC sitcom Community and the ABC series Happy Endings.

By June 2013, the Russos were in final talks to direct Marvel Studios' second Captain America movie.[11] The brothers wrapped principal production on Captain America: The Winter Soldier, in July 2013 and the film was released on April 4, 2014. In January 2014, the brothers signed on to return to direct the third Captain America film, Captain America: Civil War, which was released on May 6, 2016. In May 2014, they were announced to co-write and direct The Gray Man. In March 2015, the brothers were set to direct an all-male counterpart to Paul Feig's all-female Ghostbusters reboot, which would be produced by Sony's new-founded production company, Ghost Corps.[12][13][14] However, as of March 2016, the Russos are no longer attached to the Ghostbusters project.[15]

The Russo brothers directed Avengers: Infinity War (2018), which became the first superhero movie to gross over $2 billion at the box office. They are the third directors to make a $2 billion movie after James Cameron's films Avatar and Titanic and J. J. Abrams's film Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Its sequel, Avengers: Endgame, was released on April 26, 2019, broke numerous box office records, and became the second superhero movie to gross over $2 billion.[16] They join James Cameron as the only directors to make two $2 billion films. Joe Russo said while promoting Avengers: Endgame in Mumbai, India, "Both the films ask the question, what is the cost of being a hero? The films are about community and heroes standing up against tyranny. We certainly look at that as waves of nationalism sweep the world."[17] They have also directed the post-credits scene of Ant-Man[18] and the mid-credits scene of Captain Marvel.[19]

The brothers are financing the Los Angeles and Beijing joint-production company Anthem & Song, which is producing the Chinese superhero film The Hero's Awakening.[20][21]

The Russo brothers produced the television show Deadly Class, a Sony Pictures Television-produced adaptation of the comic book series of the same name. The show was aired on the Syfy channel.[22] Benedict Wong, Benjamin Wadsworth, Lana Condor, Michel Duval and María Gabriela de Faría were among the actors cast in main roles for the series.[23] On April 18, 2018, Syfy picked up the pilot to the series.[24] On June 4, 2019, the show was canceled.[25]

In August 2018, the brothers won the rights to adapt Nico Walker's 2018 novel Cherry.[26] They also served as award presenters at The Game Awards 2018 ceremony, which honored the best video games of that year.[27] In March 2019, it was confirmed that Tom Holland was confirmed to play the lead role in Cherry.[28] On April 10, 2019, it was announced that brothers would helm a new remake of Poltergeist.[29]

In June 2019, the Russo brothers were announced as the new executive producers for the unnamed Netflix animated series based on the Magic: The Gathering trading card game. “We have been huge fans and players of Magic: The Gathering for as long as it has been around, so being able to help bring these stories to life through animation is a true passion project for us,” the Russos said in a press statement.[30]

The Russos are developing a spy series called Citadel for Amazon Prime, which will star Priyanka Chopra and Richard Madden. The show will also have local-language versions in Mexico, India, and Italy.[31] In April 2020, it was announced that they would be producing a live-action film adaptation of Disney's Hercules.[32] By July 2020, the Russos were hired to direct an adaptation of The Gray Man for Netflix, from a screenplay by Joe Russo, with Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely to further polish the script. Both Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans attached to star.[33]

Filmography[edit]

Films[edit]

Year Title Credited as Notes
Directors Writer(s) Producers
1997 Pieces Yes Yes Yes Unreleased theatrically in the United States
2002 Welcome to Collinwood Yes Yes No
2006 You, Me and Dupree Yes No No
2014 Captain America: The Winter Soldier Yes No No
2016 Captain America: Civil War Yes No No
2018 Avengers: Infinity War Yes No No
2019 Avengers: Endgame Yes No No
21 Bridges No No Yes
2020 Relic No No Yes
Extraction No Joe Russo Yes
2021 Cherry Yes No Yes Post-production
TBA Everything Everywhere All at Once No No Yes Post-production

Television[edit]

Year Title Director(s) Executive
producer(s)
Episode(s)
2003 Lucky Yes No "Pilot", "Up the Streaks"
2003–2005 Arrested Development Yes No
Episodes
Both: "Pilot"
Anthony only: "Top Banana", "Key Decisions", "The Immaculate Election", "Spring Breakout"
Joe only: "Bringing Up Buster", "In God We Trust", "Pier Pressure", "Marta Complex", "Shock and Aww", "Missing Kitty", "Hand to God", "Motherboy XXX", "Meat the Veals"
2004–2005 LAX Yes Yes
Episodes
Both: "Pilot"
Anthony only: "The Longest Day", "The Pictures to Prove It", "Mixed Signals"
Joe only: "Finnegan Again, Begin Again", "Thanksgiving", "Senator's Daughter"
7 episodes
2006 What About Brian Yes No "Pilot"
2007–2008 Carpoolers Yes Yes
Episodes
Both: "Pilot"
Anthony only: "The Code", "The Recital"
Joe only: "Laird of the Rings", "What Would You Do?", "Down for the Count", "The Seminar",
"A Divorce to Remember", "The Handsomest Man", "Lost in America"
All episodes
2009 Comedy Showcase Yes No "The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret"
2009–2014 Community Yes Yes
2010 Running Wilde Yes Yes "Pilot"
2010 The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret Yes No Original Comedy Showcase Pilot
2011–2012 Happy Endings Yes Yes
Episodes
Both: "Pilot"
Anthony only: "Barefoot Pedaler", "Blax, Snake, Home", "Secrets and Limos"
Joe only: "Bo Fight", "Yesandwitch", "The St. Valentine's Day Massacre"
21 episodes
2011–2012 Up All Night Yes No
Episodes
Joe only: "Cool Neighbors", "Working Late and Working It", "Day After Valentine's Day"
2012 Animal Practice Yes Yes
Episodes
Both: "Pilot"
Anthony only: "Clean-Smelling Pirate"
Joe only: "Ralphie"
9 episodes
2015 Agent Carter Yes No Joe only: "Bridge and Tunnel" (as Joseph V. Russo)
2019 Deadly Class No Yes 10 episodes
2019 Larry Charles' Dangerous World of Comedy No Yes 4 episodes

Acting credits (Joe)[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2005 Arrested Development Joe Episode: "Hand to God"
2006 You, Me and Dupree Personal Trainer
2014 Captain America: The Winter Soldier Dr. Fine
2016 Captain America: Civil War Dr. Theo Broussard
2018 Avengers: Infinity War Bert Deleted scene
2019 Avengers: Endgame Grieving Man
2020 The Simpsons Movie Executive (voice)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Anthony Russo Biography". Tribute. Archived from the original on December 15, 2019. Retrieved December 2, 2019.
  2. ^ a b Lovece, Frank (March 25, 2014). "Soldier showdown: Joe and Anthony Russo take the helm of 'Captain America' franchise". Archived from the original on September 21, 2016. I was born in February of 1970 and Joe was born in July of 1971.
  3. ^ Russo Brothers verified account [@Russo_Brothers] (July 18, 2019). "Happy Birthday Joe" (Tweet). Archived from the original on August 5, 2019 – via Twitter. "Despite what Wiki says, it's actually today."
  4. ^ a b "Italians in Hollywood". Italian American Museum of Los Angeles. Archived from the original on July 18, 2020. Retrieved May 9, 2020 – via Google Arts & Culture. The Russo and Gallupoli families ... emigrated from the humble villages of Longi and Caccamo, Sicily, and Spoltore, Abruzzo
  5. ^ O'Connor, Clint (January 12, 2019). "'Captain America: The Winter Soldier': Directors Anthony and Joe Russo on landing in the Marvel universe and their love of '70s crime thrillers". The Plain Dealer. Cleveland, Ohio. Archived from the original on July 18, 2020.
  6. ^ Luttermoser, John (August 29, 2009). "Anthony and Joe Russo put 'Community' on edge for NBC comedy series". The Plain Dealer. Cleveland, Ohio. Archived from the original on July 18, 2020. Retrieved February 11, 2014.
  7. ^ "Iowa Alumni Magazine: Captain Middle America". University of Iowa Alumni. Archived from the original on February 11, 2017. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
  8. ^ Crowder, Courtney (May 9, 2016). "Iowa has close ties to 'Captain America' series". Des Moines Register. Iowa, U.S. Archived from the original on July 18, 2020. Retrieved July 18, 2020.
  9. ^ Cohen, Rich (April 22, 2019). "The Russo Brothers Have Post-'Avengers' Grand Plans". Esquire. Archived from the original on April 28, 2019. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
  10. ^ a b c d "Anthony and Joe Russo: Executive Producers/Directors". Community official site: "About/Bios" (NBC). Archived from the original on September 22, 2009.
  11. ^ Kit, Borys (June 6, 2012). "Russo Brothers in Final Talks to Direct 'Captain America 2'". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on March 19, 2015. Retrieved July 18, 2020.
  12. ^ Kroll, Justin (May 28, 2014). "Sony Acquires 'The Gray Man' for Joe Roth and 'Captain America' Directors (Exclusive)". Variety. Retrieved May 28, 2014.
  13. ^ "Lucy Lawless Joins Ash vs. Evil Dead". Dread Central.
  14. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. "Guy 'Ghostbusters' In Works With Russo Brothers, Channing Tatum & Drew Pearce". Deadline Hollywood.
  15. ^ Barken, Jonathan (March 18, 2016). "The Russo Brothers 'Ghostbusters' is Confirmed Dead". Bloody Disgusting.
  16. ^ Kit, Borys; Siegemund-Broka, Austin (March 23, 2015). "Russo Brothers to Direct 'Avengers: Infinity War' Parts 1 and 2". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on March 23, 2015. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
  17. ^ Raman, Sruthi Ganapathy. "What to expect as the countdown to 'Avengers: Endgame' begins: 'The cost of being a hero'". Scroll.in.
  18. ^ Sciretta, Peter (June 29, 2015). "When Will You See the First Clip From 'Captain America: Civil War'?". /Film. Archived from the original on July 17, 2015. Retrieved July 16, 2015.
  19. ^ Travis, Ben; Hewitt, Chris (March 11, 2019). "Captain Marvel: 15 Spoiler Facts From Directors Anna Boden And Ryan Fleck". Empire. Archived from the original on August 20, 2019. Retrieved March 12, 2019.
  20. ^ Brzeski, Patrick (March 13, 2016). "Russo Brothers Launch Studio to Produce Chinese-Language Films (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter.
  21. ^ Frater, Patrick (May 10, 2016). "'Captain America' Filmmakers Announce Chinese Superhero Project". Variety.
  22. ^ Melrose, Kevin (July 21, 2016). "SDCC: Russo Brothers to Produce "Deadly Class" TV Series". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved June 15, 2017.
  23. ^ Petski, Denise (November 9, 2017). "'Deadly Class': Syfy Sets Full Cast For Comic-Based Drama Pilot". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 9, 2017.
  24. ^ Petski, Denise; Andreeva, Nellie (April 18, 2018). "Syfy Picks Up To Series 'Deadly Class' Drama Based On Graphic Novel From The Russo Brothers". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 19, 2018.
  25. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (June 5, 2019). "'Happy!' & 'Deadly Class' Canceled By Syfy". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 7, 2019.
  26. ^ McNary, Dave (August 24, 2018). "Russo Brothers Close Deal to Direct PTSD Drama 'Cherry'". Variety. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
  27. ^ Pereira, Chris. "Avengers 4 Directors Will Be At The Game Awards". GameSpot. Retrieved November 30, 2018.
  28. ^ Kroll, Justin (March 11, 2019). "Tom Holland Reteams With Russo Brothers for 'Cherry' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  29. ^ Miska, Brad (April 10, 2019). "'Poltergeist' Getting Remade *Again* with 'Captain America' and 'Avengers' Directors?!".
  30. ^ "Avengers: Endgame directors developing animated Magic: The Gathering series at Netflix". Entertainment Weekly. June 3, 2019.
  31. ^ Sneider, Jeff (January 14, 2020). "Priyanka Chopra, Richard Madden to Star in Russo Brothers' Spy Series 'Citadel'". Collider.
  32. ^ "'Hercules' Live-Action Remake in the Works From Disney, 'Shang-Chi' Writer". The Hollywood Reporter. April 30, 2020.
  33. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (July 17, 2020). "Netflix Commits Largest Budget So Far For 'The Gray Man;' Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans Star, AGBO'S Joe & Anthony Russo Direct Mano A Mano Espionage Thriller". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 17, 2020.

External links[edit]