Joss Whedon discusses the role of Black Widow and Hawkeye in Avengers 2. Kevin Feige lets us know when the next Marvel films will be announced. Another Mark Millar comic is becoming a film. One superhero director wants to tackle the Sandman movie. Plus another nerve-shattering Gravity trailer. Spoilers ahead...
Top Image: Gravity
The Avengers: Age of Ultron
Director Joss Whedon discusses the role Hawkeye and the Black Widow will play in the new film. About Hawkeye, Whedon says:
"It's very much a global Avengers film. 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."
He also talks about Black Widow’s unique skill set and place in the world:
Natasha is a huge part of the sequel, because you do want to concentrate on the people who don't have their own franchises. Although she's in 'Cap 2,' [and] she's great. She was the most fun for me because she's not a hero, you know, and it's something that I read—and I feel bad that I can't remember who wrote the book—but it's in one of the books explaining, 'These guys are heroes, you are a spy. It's a different thing—it's a different skill set—and you don't have their moral high ground or any of that good stuff.' And that just makes her so interesting to me. So yeah, the stuff I've got going on with her in the second one is killer.
Marvel Phase 3
Fans had better be content with what they got at Comic-Con. There won't be any "phase three" announcements, until possibly Comic-Con 2014. When Studio head Kevin Feige was asked about the timetable of revealing more about the post-Avengers 2 films, he said “Well, it’s only 2013 now. But I think it would probably be, at the earliest, a year from now.” Until then we’ll have to keep wildly speculating about Doctor Strange and Black Panther. [/Film]
Christopher Nolan’s upcoming sci-fi film has added its final cast member. Wes Bentley (Hunger Games) has joined the film production. [ComingSoon.net]
The Secret Service
Original comic writer Mark Millar gave an update at Comic-Con about the film adaptation of his comic by director Matthew Vaughn. He confirmed that Michael Caine has joined the cast, and added:
So [Jane Goldman] and Mathew have done it. It’s all written now and they start shooting in five weeks or something. All the cast is done. Michael Caine is the head of this spy organization. Colin Firth is the senior guy and a new young guy coming in who’s [unintelligible]. So it’s My Fair Lady meets James Bond. It’s… I don’t know what Americans would call it, but a chav, the street kids, somebody who’s a kind of hoodie or something. It’s a scummy kid who’s being trained to be a British gentleman spy.
Negotiations are expected to begin soon with brand new and unknown actor Taron Egerton to play the kid in the film. Rumor has it that Vaughn is eyeing either Emma Watson or Bella Heathcote to play the female lead, and is searching for a high profile actor to play the villain. He has already approached Tom Cruise and Leonardo DiCaprio with the villain role, but both have passed. [Variety]
Captain America: The Winter Solider
Scarlett Johansson explains the movie's timing, and the relationship between Captain America and Black Widow:
This film is in real time, so it's been two years and we're both agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. We're fighting on the ground. It's not like we have these superpowers that we use, and [we can] fly around. We have a short-hand between us. We fight in a similar style. It's very much a working relationship. Through a series of unfortunate events, they find themselves in a situation where their working relationship becomes a more intimate friendship. They have some unexpected similarities between them. They have their guard up and they have their trust issues. They also have both been working for "the man" for their entire professional careers. Through this unexpected friendship that forms, they're starting to question what they want, and they start to question their own identity. It's a complex relationship that forms between them. Chris and I have known each other for 10 years. It's our fourth movie together.
Director Alfonso Cuarón explains how realism and experience define his movie, and set it apart from 2001: A Space Odyssey:
The two things they have in common: The approach is to do something that is realistic. Very realistic. I mean, we thought it should feel as if you're watching a Discovery Channel documentary on what went wrong. And Kubrick was — even if he was dealing with the future where technology doesn't exist right now, he was so meticulous about it. But I think that's where the similarities end, because Kubrick's film is an almost philosophical piece.
The last act is not trying to go for realism.
Not only not trying to be realistic, in many ways it is about humanity and technology and evolution — it's about amazing questions. "Gravity" is more like an experience. And [cowriter] Jonás [Cuarón] was so stubborn about it. If I tried to add some rhetoric, he would say, "No, no. Let's convey that through action."
Originally, Robert Downey Jr. was cast in the role George Clooney is now playing. It was reported at the time that he left the production due to scheduling conflicts, but Cuaron explains Downey wasn’t really working out in the role:
Downey was attached. But we just kept on extending the process. And also it was very clear that the technology we were going to use — it was not the most compatible thing for what Robert is the best at. That is, he takes one scene, and he just starts riffing. And because of the technology that we use, it's pretty much limited. We have to preprogram the film before shooting.