SDCC14: Marvel Studios Hall H Recap — Avengers: Age of Ultron
By Muuka Muyumba
After Ant-Man startled the crowd in Hall H with surprise footage, Marvel moved onto their meat and potatoes and introduced The Avengers! Kevin Feige brought out the cast of the new film and one surprise was that Cobie Smulders was included in the line up. Smulders has been doing double duty since How I Met Your Mother ended, moving between Marvel’s Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Avengers. Now she appears to have her future tied to Marvel, and one wonders whether she will have a much more substantial role like Agent Coulson had in the first Avengers film.
Avengers stars Robert Downey, Jr., Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, and Chris Evans. New additions included Paul Bettany as the Vision, James Spade as Ultron, Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Quicksilver, and Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch.
Here’s a video from ScreenCrush showing that RDJ is ever the showman.
All the Avengers were there except for their real fearless leader, director Joss Whedon who is laid up in London after knee surgery. Also missing is the very pregnant Scarlett Johansson.
After short and lively questions and answers with the cast, Feige presented a “incredible” teaser trailer from the film that included more evidence of how epic this sequel will be.
The film footage opens with the entire gang trying to pick up Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, first Tony Stark, then Rhodie (Don Cheadle) tries to help Tony. Then Hawkeye, then Hulk, before Captain America manages to nudge it just a bit, which makes Thor frown. It’s at that moment that we hear Spader’s voice, and Ultron walks into Tony Stark’s swanky NYC apartment. Is he a party guest? No, he’s there to save Earth — by way of human extinction. Two more robots then fly at the group, before the footage kicks into a montage (with Spader’s over the entire thing) that sees the Avengers spread around the globe, all individually doing their thing. It’s impressive, and it’s also the first time we see Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, also elsewhere in the world.
It ends on a powerful note, with Downey’s Iron Man lamenting that what he started was now unraveling, before cutting to him in the Hulkbuster suit, battling Hulk, as the duo are now the same size. After all that fighting? A hint of romance, with Hulk holding out his hand to Black Widow, who holds out her own to touch him. Suddenly, Cap’s shield appears, cut in two, before showing all of the Avengers on the ground next to it, seemingly laying dead….except for Tony, who is standing over them, looking at them in grief and fear and astonishment.
The other surprise of the event was when Downey brought out one more new member of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Josh Brolin. Brolin’s casting as Thanos has now become official from Marvel, but no word on how significant his role is in Guardians of the Galaxy or Avengers: Age of Ultron. As you may recall, Thanos made a wordless cameo in The Avengers, and will apparently have a role in Guardians where he plays an Palpatine-type of role to the villain Ronan. Brolin’s voice is heard in Guardians, but with Ultron being the main villain in the Avengers sequel, one has to wonder whether we will see Thanos at all in Age of Ultron. This was not made clear during the panel. At best, Brolin will probably be used in another end credit sequence, but certainly his character will surely court Death.
Thanos is the overarching villain in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and most suspect that the Avengers won’t go head-to-head with his until Avenger 3 after Guardians of the Galaxy merges their terrestrial universe with magic and the cosmos.
Avengers: Age of Ultron is set for release on May 1, 2015.