Posts Tagged ‘Avengers 2’

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Mark Ruffalo Dishes On Avengers: Age Of Ultron Script, Confirms Darkness, Laughs image
If there’s any one script that the entire industry would give their right arm to get their hands on (good luck turning pages, stubby!), it’s got to be The Avengers: Age Of Ultron. The first picture was a billion dollar success, but the story actually left several unanswered questions. How can S.H.I.E.L.D. be trusted after the chain-of-command scuffle that almost destroyed New York? Who is Thanos? And what’s going on with that barely-contained sexual tension between Tony Stark and Bruce Banner?

Earlier, Scarlett Johansson claimed to know these answers, as she dished some minor sentiments regarding the script, calling it “dark” (not a huge reveal there). Now, Mark Ruffalo has also revealed that he’s read the script, and MTV was there to derail conversation about his Sundance film Infinitely Polar Bear to ask about it.

“I would say that it’s better, it’s cooler, it’s more awesomer,” he said, proving that he’s fairly adept at speaking Comic Con-ese. “It’s a little bit darker, but also really had Joss Whedon’s incredibly witty and sly sense of humor.” He also confirms there’s plenty in the script for Bruce Banner to do, but, well, he’d better if Ruffalo’s agent has anything to say about it.

Nerd Speculation Time! Ruffalo seems to be confirming the mandatory “darker sequel” angle, but by talking up the humor he suggests the drama will come from unlikely sources this time around. In other words, the Avengers won’t be “Disassembled” or any such event. Facing off against Baron Von Strucker and Ultron in this installment seems fairly comic book-y, and there’s a very good chance that lingering, deadly-serious Thanos continues waiting in the wings. Or maybe Ruffalo and Johansson simply read different chunks of the same script: again, this thing is in-demand, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if they both read approved chunks of the script in a heavy-security safe house in Brazil once and were forced to leave without it. Maybe Ruffalo got the funny stuff, while Black Widow ended up dealing with some heavy stuff in the aftermath of Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

You can pull off “darker” with “more laughs,” and that’s really the best sort of balance with these comic movies: with sequels announced until the end of time, you really need to find new ways to build suspense as much as possible. Fortunately, Whedon and his collaborators never forget that these are comic books originally made for audiences of children. They should be funny, a little ridiculous, and ultimately light on their feet if they want to honor the source material.

Expanding beyond that and using, say, Batman as a template for a serious message or a relevant contemporary theme could prove fruitful, but that’s not the sort of approach that’s all that easy to pull off. Nevermind the struggle in being allowed to use what are essentially costumed corporate mascots for the sake of complex adult storytelling: you can really only pull that off in cult comics and slashfic. Dirty, dirty slashfic.

Avengers: Age Of Ultron opens May 1st, 2015.

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Thomas-Kretschmann-in-Focus-Films-The-Pianist-2002-9THR is reporting that Thomas Kretschmann has been added as Baron Wolfgang von Strucker, a Hydra leader who has had his own share of run-ins with the Avengers.

Seeing as this movie is already full of A-List actors and characters, I predict that Strucker won’t have much of a role in this film beyond being the link to Hydra for the Maximoff Twins. I doubt he’ll do much more than issue orders, though it would be interesting to see if he’ll be used to greater effect in later films.

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Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth OlsenI’ve already commented that it was official due to other reputable sources, but now it’s official!official with Marvel itself signing off on the casting.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen have officially joined the Avengers family as the brother-sister duo of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch in Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the highly-anticipated sequel to 2012’s smash-hit “Marvel’s The Avengers”! “Avengers: Age of Ultron” arrives in theaters May 1, 2015.

Taylor-Johnson broke out with his roles as Dave Lizewski in the “Kick-Ass” franchise and with his portrayal of a young John Lennon in “Nowhere Boy,” for which he won an Empire Award for Best Newcomer. Since then, Taylor Johnson has starred in 2012’s critically-acclaimed “Anna Karenina” and director Oliver Stone’s “Savages.”

Since making her big screen debut in 2011 with “Silent House” and “Martha Marcy May Marlene,” for which the actress garnered a number of awards and nominations, Olsen has gone on to star alongside the likes of Robert DeNiro and Sigourney Weaver in “Red Lights,” Josh Brolin and Samuel L. Jackson in director Spike Lee’s “Oldboy.”

Taylor-Johnson and Olsen will share the screen as leads in the highly anticipated “Godzilla” remake scheduled for a May 2014 release.

“Avengers: Age of Ultron” will bring the Marvel Universe’s biggest heroes together again to face one of their biggest villains, with “Marvel’s The Avengers” director Joss Whedon returning to write and direct the sequel. “Marvel’s The Avengers” was released in 2012 and went on to earn $1.5 billion worldwide, making it the third-largest grossing movie of all time.

In addition to “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” Marvel Studios will release a slate of films based on the Marvel characters including “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” on April 4, 2014; “Guardians of the Galaxy” on August 1, 2014; and “Ant-Man” on July 31, 2015.

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jackson-furyThe internet is abuzz with the news that Nick Fury, well, Samuel L Jackson, confirmed via the Wallstreet Journal that Elizabeth Olsen will indeed be Scarlet Witch in Avengers 2, Age of Ultron.

“I don’t think we begin shooting before March of next year,” Jackson said of “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the next film to begin shooting in the Marvel universe.  ”I know we’re shooting in London, that James Spader is Ultron and going to be the bad guy, and that we added Ms. [Elizabeth] Olsen [who will play the Scarlet Witch], but I don’t know what she’s doing, if she’s on the inside or the outside. I haven’t seen a script.”

It’s important to note that it’s the journal which added the [who will play the Scarlet Witch], that’st not exactly what Jackson said. It could have been implied/said in part of the interview not published, but it’s not specifically mentioned here. Also, while I’m sure Jackson is close to the production, this is by no means official confirmation of the casting of Wanda.

Until Marvel or Whedon says so, it’s still a ‘rumor’. Of course, Jackson’s comments makes it a highly probable rumor, but still a rumor.

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James SpaderAccording to The Wrap, James Spader has been cast as Ultron in Avengers: Age of Ultron.  No word yet on just how much James is going to have to do. Will he be more of a voice like Paul Bettany or doing motion capture like Ruffalo when he Hulks out.

Regardless, I think this is a good fit. Spader is a bit of a character actor, has played all extremes, from Stargate to Secretary, he doesn’t have a ‘type’. Whatever tone Joss is going with Ultron, I’m sure he’ll be able to bring it. But since Joss didn’t go with a more definitive actor, then it puts the whole movie into the air.

At this point, anything goes.

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Elle Style Awards, London, Britain - 11 Feb 2013The latest report on Wanda for Avengers 2 is that Elizabeth Olsen is in talks for the role. Now, I have to admit, I haven’t seen her in anything. I can’t say a single thing about her acting, but I’ve heard a lot of good things. And even though she’s not of Eastern European decent, she at least looks close to right for the part. Looks good in brown curly hair and very expressive eyes. A little spray tan and it could work. But here’s the rub, Wanda is Eastern European, she’s the Marvel version of Romani, so why couldn’t they hire one of the hundreds of very capable Eastern European actresses to play her?

An argument could be made that getting an American actress to play an Eastern European isn’t any worse than getting a British person to play an American, or an Australian to play a Canadian, or a Frenchman to play a Czech. It’s not about race, it’s about culture, and as long as they stay true to the character, the actor’s own bloodline shouldn’t matter, right? It’s an argument that is fraught with difficulties with no clear cut answers.

Personally, as much as I would prefer to have a culturally Romani/Eastern European play Wanda, I will settle for an American actress as long as she and the production respects Wanda’s character as Eastern European.

But in that same report, we have comment that she won’t be speaking in a European accent but a British one, thereby clinching the earlier comments that Whedon and Co. were looking to make the twins “edgy and British”.

This… is not acceptable. When you take a character out of a country then you redefine them. Gone is their heritage and birthrights. Gone is their world view and motivations. This is especially true when the culture is something as distinct and unique as Romani. It would be like taking a character that is Texan and making them a New Yorker, or vise versa. It’s a complete disrespect for everything that made that character who they are, for better or worse.

This is especially true for Wanda who is a basically a witch. There is a very spiritual element to her magic/powers and it is highlighted by her heritage. Granted, there is the possibility of going the wrong way with it and turning the character into a racist stereotype of a ‘Gypsy’, but there is also the very real possibility to use Wanda to help rid the world of that negative stereotype. Instead, it looks like they aren’t going to risk it and are taking the safe option of making her British, after all, British is in right now and we can’t offend them no matter how hard we try because they’re just so much better at insulting people than we are.

So the last question is, if Wanda is being stripped of her spiritual heritage, and can’t be a ‘mutant’, then will her magic be dulled down into something much more sterile and cold?

I always try to wait till I have the whole picture and not jump to conclusions, especially this early in the game, after all, Olsen hasn’t been officially signed on yet nor has Wanda’s character traits been absolutely confirmed… but I having a really hard time trying to maintain that level of neutrality.

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The Maximoff Twins: Scarlet Witch and QuicksilverI’ve seen a lot of confusion about Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch being in the upcoming Fox and Disney/Marvel movies. Here is what you need to know:

1. If one studio uses the Maximoff twins, can they be used by the other?

Yes. When Fox received the license to use the X-Men in film, Wanda and Pietro were put in a gray zone and both studios have license to use the characters, with limitations.

2. What are the limitations each studio has for using the twins?

  • Fox can use them as ‘mutants’ related to ‘Magneto’ with some kind of relationship with the ‘X-Men’ but they can not be refered to as ‘Avengers’. (They can be Brotherhood, free agents, X-Men, or other, as long as Fox has the license for that group.)
  • Disney can use them as ‘Avengers’, but they can not be specifically referred to as ‘mutants’ nor their father mentioned by name. (The studio has the choice of either leaving that ambiguous, i.e. orphaned at birth (which is canon), or they can write in a new back story.)

Neither studio gets to use them as a whole.

3. Will they be played by the same person?

Nothing says that they can’t be, but since they will be two different versions of the same character, one a mutant, the other an Avenger, then it only makes sense to have two different actors. Think of it as if Keaton and Bale had their Batman’s come out at the same time. Both are Batman but done in two very different tones with a different take on the Gotham universe.

4. Then who will be playing them?

Evan Peters has been cast as Quicksilver in Days of Future Past and Wanda will not appear in the film.

Names have been thrown around for Avengers 2 but no official announcements have been made at this time.

5. Wanda isn’t in Days of Future Past, so Quicksilver is an only child?

Not necessarily. Singer only says that Wanda will ‘not appear’, meaning her character will do just that, not appear in the film. This does not mean she can’t be referred to as existing some place else at the time, i.e. “Have you spoken to your sister?” “Last I heard she was in Australia.”

Or, they could simply leave it as a non-issue. If no one asks him if he has siblings, and he never volunteers the information,  then for all we know both Wanda and Lorna exist someplace (and possible show up in a later film).

6. If they aren’t mutants in Avengers… then what?

We don’t know at this time but there are several options. Augmented Humans. Experimentation. Alien Tech. Magic. Etc.

Personally I’m voting for ‘magic as a higher form of science’ because I believe not only would that be closer to their original status as mutants but also fit in well with the established concept via the Asgardians. Also, Doctor Strange.

7. What about their heritage?

The twins were grew up as the modern equivalent of Romani after being adopted when their mother died at childbirth (probably).

Nothing has been said in Days of Future Past regarding Quicksilver’s adoptive parents or where he grew up. Evan Peters does look like the son of Erik who is a German Jew. Wanda took more after their mother who was the Romani, but as Wanda’s not appearing in the film, I doubt much will be made of this and Quicksilver will be German or from a Soviet Block country.

Whedon has said that he’s looking at ‘edgy British’ for the twins. Now, ‘British’ does not mean the twins could not be of Romani heritage but they apparently will not be first generation Romani. Whether or not they hold any ties to the Romani heritage is highly suspect at this time as the studio may decide to avoid the subject in order to keep from causing any kind of political incorrectness.

Basically, it is more likely that the twins will be ‘white washed’ in Avengers than in Days of Future Past.

8. No Magento in Avengers, what does that mean for the twins?

Not a hell of a lot. The twins were in the Brotherhood then joined the Avengers long before they realized their true parentage.

 I think that is everything, if there is something I have missed, let me know and I will do my best to answer it.

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