If you were in post-production on a movie that wasn’t just the biggest film of your career but one of the most ambitious franchise tie-ups ever attempted, you’d think you’d just concentrate on that. However while Joss Whedon was completing The Avengers, he also managed to find time to shoot a low-budget, black and white version of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, set in modern-day California. The man sure likes to work. [Read more...]
Just yesterday rumours were circulation that Paul Bettany would play Ultron in The Avengers: Age Of Ultron, mainly based on the idea that as Joss Whedon has said Ultron is the result of Tony Stark’s technology gone wrong, the character would essentially be an evil version of Stark’s computer, Jarvis.
However that rumour has now been blown out of the water by the news that James Spader will face off against Earth’s Mightiest Heroes as the villain in Marvel’s The Avengers: Age of Ultron. Spader earned three Emmy Awards for his role as Alan Shore on Boston Legal and The Practice, and will return to television this fall in NBC’s highly anticipated series The Blacklist. Most recently Spader was seen in the critically-acclaimed film Lincoln.
But while Spader will play Ultron, that’s no guarantee that he won’t be a corrupted Jarvis.
The 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.
The film comes to theaters on May 1, 2015. (Source: Marvel.com)
When it was announced on Saturday that the Avengers sequel will be called Avengers: Age Of Ultron, many wondered if that meant Henry Pym, aka Ant-Man, would pop up in the movie, being introduced in that film before he gets his own Edgar Wright adventure later the same year.
The reason for that is that in the comics, Pym created the villainous Ultron, an artificial intelligence determined to wipe out humanity.
However now Joss Whedon has cleared things up, saying we probably won’t meet Ant-Man until his own film, and Ultron will get a brand new origin story. Whedon told MovieWeb, “Well, because there was a book called ‘Age of Ultron’ quite recently, a lot of people have assumed that is what we’re doing, but that is not the case. We’re doing our own version of the origin story for Ultron. In the origin story, there was Hank Pym, so a lot of people assumed that he will be in the mix. He’s not. We’re basically taking the things from the comics for the movies that we need and can use. A lot of stuff has to fall by the wayside.”
He added, “We’re crafting our own version of it where his origin comes more directly from The Avengers we already know about. It’s a little bit darker than the other film because Ultron is in the house. There’s a science fiction theme that wasn’t there in the other one. Ultron is definitely something that evolves, so we’re going to get together a couple of different iterations. Nothing can be translated exactly as it was from the comics; particularly Ultron.”
That’s led to speculation that Tony Stark inadvertently creates Ultron, perhaps as an accidental offshoot of his technological advances – or perhaps Jarvis (Paul Bettany) gets corrupted and turns evil. There’s also speculation that with Vin Diesel hinting that he’s joining the Marvel family, he will voice the villain.
Whedon also says the film will be told on an even bigger scale. “It’s very much a global Avengers film,” he says. “A lot of the movie has to do with their place not just in America, but the world. Part of the fun for me, definitely this time around, is writing Hawkeye. He did get possessed pretty early by a bad guy and had to walk around all scowly for most of the movie so now it’s nice to actually have the character there and see him interact with the other guys.”
The entire Marvel Comic-Con panel has also popped up online, including info on Thor 2, Captain America 2, Avengers 2 and Guardians Of The Galaxy – as well as Loki making an appearance in front of the pitiful humans in San Diego. You can watch that below.
After the announcement that Batman and Superman will team up on screen in 2015, Marvel had a big act to follow. They did so with a big presentation, which included the reveal on the logo, title and villain for The Avengers 2.
The movie will be called Avengers: Age Of Ultron, which automatically lets us know who – or what – they’ll be up against. Ultron is an evil artificial intelligence, which was a long and complex history in Marvel comics. That makes it difficult to tell exactly how it will be used in the movie.
In the comics Ultron was originally created by the first Ant-Man, Hugh Pym. The sentient robot, encased in an adamantium shell, is dedicating to eradicating the human race once and for all. The robot’s violent tendencies are said to spring from both Pym’s intellect and mental instability.
There is of course an Ant-Man movie in the works, directed by Edgar Wright, but that won’t arrive in cinemas until after Avengers: Age Of Ultron. As Whedon has said Ant-Man has had to be re-written to take into account the events of Avengers 2, the two movie could still be strongly tied together though – it certainly suggests we’ll first meet Ant-Man in Avengers 2 rather than his own movie.
You can also take a look at a vid below of Tom Hiddleston at the Marvel panel, addressing the audience in character as Loki.
Iron Man 3 was the final film in Robert Downey Jr.’s deal with Marvel, meaning that if they wanted him in The Avengers 2, they’d need to get him agree to sign up. Many thought that might be difficult, as Marvel is notoriously wary of paying stars big bucks, except for RDJ, who got in early with a deal that netted him over $50 million for The Avengers.
The presumption was that Marvel would try to pay him less, but the actor would hold out for more.
However the two sides have now come to terms, and it’s been announced that Robert Downey Jr. will indeed return as Tony Stark/Iron Man in both The Avengers 2 and The Avengers 3. The agreement only covers those movies, meaning that at the moment there won’t be any more stand-alone Iron Man films.
RDJ has suggested that he wants to “retire” as Tony Stark/Iron Man, but he hasn’t said when that might happen. It may well be that these two films will play out the end of the actor playing Iron Man.
Some are now wondering whether this will spur the other Avengers actors to try and get better deals. Marvel is well known for signing actors to long, multi-film deals which pay far less than most other such Hollywood contracts. So far they’ve got away with it due how keen people have been to be part of the Marvel universe, as well as the studio’s willingness to replace actors who want more cash (even Chris Evans was threatened with being canned when he tried to renegotiate). With the massive success of The Avengers and RDJ likely being paid huge bucks to return, the others may now try to get a bigger slice of the pie.
The Avengers 2 comes to theaters May 1st, 2015 with Joss Whedon directing.
Aaron Taylor-Johnson already has the lead in the Kick-ass franchise and very nearly became Beast in X-Men: First Class. Now he’s being eyed to return to superhero territory, as TheWrap reports Marvel is eyeing him to play Quicksilver in The Avengers 2.
Last month, Joss Whedon confirmed that both Quicksilver (aka Pietro Maximoff) and his sister Scarlet Witch (aka Wanda Maximoff) will be a part of this Marvel Phase Two ensemble. Interestingly, Marvel and 20th Century Fox share the rights to these characters, whose father is Magneto from the X-Men universe. As a result Evan Peters is playing Quicksilver in director Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Days of Future Past, which is currently shooting in Montreal.
Quicksilver possesses the gift of superhuman speed, while his sister Scarlet Witch can control the power of probability. It isn’t quite clear how these superhero siblings will fit into The Avengers 2, but we do know that because of the way the rights work, there’ll be no mention of Quicksilver having Megneto as his dad.
We also don’t know how interested Aaron is in joining the Marvel universe, so it may be that no deal is eventually reached. He’ll next be seen in Kick-Ass 2, and he is currently shooting Godzilla for director Gareth Edwards.
Want to know more about Marvel Phase 2? Well, you’re in luck, as a video has popped up online taking us into the expansion of the Marvel Universe. Unsurprisingly it focuses on the imminent Iron Man 3, but there’s also chat, concept art and footage from the likes of Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians Of The Galaxy and The Avengers 2.
It’s all quite interesting, although more designed to make Phase 2 sound exciting than to tell us too many concrete facts about the upcoming movies.
There’s also been come concept art for Captain America 2 and Guardians Of The Galaxy popped up, which you can see below.
Marvel must have liked shooting Thor: The Dark World in the UK, as they were already planning to film Guardians Of The Galaxy in Britain later this year, and now it’s been revealed The Avengers 2 will also be coming to the UK, according to ScreenDaily.
Marvel’s The Avengers was shot entirely in the US, but the studio feels Britain is the home for the sequel. There’s no news on whether that means the sequel will be less centred on America, or if it’s purely because it’s cheaper to shoot over here.
Joss Whedon is returning to write and direct, with Avengers stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson, and Mark Ruffalo all slated to return.
Other major productions that have recently shot at Pinewood-Shepperton include Maleficent, Jack Ryan and The Muppets… Again!. Disney’s live-action Cinderella is about to start shooting there in the near future.
The Avengers 2 comes to cinemas May 1st, 2015.
There have been an awful lot of Iron Man 3 posters released, and now we’ve got another one, which is essentially a composite of the previously released character posters. It’s pretty cool, even if Ben Kingsley’s Mandarin does look like he’s randomly floating in the background.
And while we’re talking Iron Man 3, Joss Whedon has seen the film and commented that it’s made writing The Avengers 2 a bit more daunting for him. Marvel had honcho Kevin Feige told 2 Kids And A Coupon that, “We have what I think is the biggest, you know, most action packed finale we’ve had. I showed the film to Joss Whedon, who is our writer-director of Avengers, is currently working on Avengers 2, and he saw the finale of this and he goes, now what am I supposed to do now? What am I going to do in Avengers 2?”
Whether that’s just because the ending is so huge or if it effects Tony Stark’s story in a way that will impact on the next Avengers movie isn’t known. Iron Man 3 hits UK cinemas on April 26th and the US on May 3rd.
Most people who were busy putting together such a massive movie as The Avengers would have enough on their plate, but Joss Whedon isn’t most people, as while he was still putting the finishing touches on his superhero movies, he was also shooting a micro-budget film version of Much Ado About Nothing.
That film is now on its way to cinemas, with a UK poster and release date of June 14th announced (it’ll hit the US on June 21st), as well as the first trailer debuting.
The black and white takes a contemporary take on Shakespeare’s comedy (although still with the original text), and stars many actors who’ve worked with Whedon before on his various TV shows, such as Amy Acker (Angel), Alexis Denisof (Buffy & Angel), Clark Gregg (Avengers) & Nathan Fillion (Firefly).
Here’s the synopsis: ‘Leonato (Clark Gregg – THE AVENGERS; IRON MAN), the governor of Messina, is visited by his friend Don Pedro (Reed Diamond – MONEYBALL; GOOD NIGHT & GOOD LUCK), who is returning from a victorious campaign against his rebellious brother Don John (Sean Maher – SERENITY; TV’s FIREFLY). Accompanying Don Pedro are two of his officers: Benedick (Alexis Denisof – THE AVENGERS; TV’s ANGEL) and Claudio (Fran Kranz – DIARY OF A WIMPY KID; TV’s DOLLHOUSE). While in Messina, Claudio falls for Leonato’s daughter Hero (newcomer Jillian Morgese), and Benedick verbally spars with Beatrice (Amy Acker – THE CABIN IN THE WOODS; TV’s ANGEL; DOLLHOUSE), the governor’s niece. The budding love between Claudio and Hero prompts Don Pedro to arrange, with Leonato, their marriage.
‘In the days leading up to the ceremony, Don Pedro, with the help of Leonato, Claudio and Hero, attempts to sport with Benedick and Beatrice in an effort to trick the two into falling in love. Meanwhile, the villainous Don John, with the help of his allies Conrade (Riki Lindhome – MILLION DOLLAR BABY) and Borachio (Spencer Treat Clark – MYSTIC RIVER), plots against the happy couple, using his own form of trickery to try to destroy the marriage before it begins. A series of comic and tragic events may continue to keep the two couples from truly finding happiness, but then again perhaps love may prevail.’ [Read more...]