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Kevin Feige Teases Thanos' Importance to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

Is the Behind-the-Scenes Big Bad of "Avengers" going to play a similar role in next year's outer-space Marvel adventure?

Thanos Illustration - P 2013
Aleksi Bricklot/Marvel Entertainment

Now that we know Ultron is the main villain of the second Avengers movie, you might be wondering what, exactly, has become of the purple guy glimpsed during the post-credits sequence of The Avengers. Could that character -- the mad god Thanos, as comic fans know him -- turn out to be the mover and shaker behind events in next year's Guardians of the Galaxy, instead? Well, apparently, the answer to that one might be a little complicated.

Talking to Empire, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige said that "Ronan the Accuser [Lee Pace's character] is very much the main bad guy" of the movie, but added that "Thanos is lurking above it all. You will learn more about Thanos in Guardians, for sure. Certainly you'll get more than one turn-around-and-smirk. You'll get much more than that."

RELATED: Ultron 101: Get to Know Your Next 'Avengers' Villain

Thanos, Feige explained, was the connective tissue between Guardians and the other Marvel movies, although he didn't elaborate on what that would mean for future Thanos appearances. Having seen him turn out to be ultimately behind the attack on Earth in the first Avengers and now reading hints that he'll be "above it all" in Guardians, it's worth considering the possibility that he'll also turn out to be responsible for Ultron in some way during Age of Ultron, leading to some kind of showdown in Avengers 3.

What kind of a showdown? Well, the comic version of Thanos has always had particular interest in the "soul gems" that grant the wearer of the Infinity Gauntlet omnipotence, and we've already seen the Infinity Gauntlet in the Thor movie. Just saying, of course.