Out in San Diego over the weekend, Marvel treated Comic-Con attendees to one of their best surprises in Hall H yet, with Joss Whedon taking to the stage to announce that The Avengers sequel will be titled Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Whedon then gave an interview with Marvel LIVE! to talk about the sequel, clarifying a few details about what we can and can’t expect, following the speculation that arose after the title’s announcement.
Many thought that the title of Whedon’s next film might relate in part to the Age of Ultron comic series, published earlier this year. The plot sees Ultron created by Hank Pym (a.k.a. Ant-Man), the character that will be at the heart of Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man movie, which follows Avengers: Age of Ultron in November 2015.
The original arc of the same name also involves Wolverine, Invisible Woman, and Susan Storm, which would naturally bring a hugely different flavour to the sequel than we were expecting. When we first heard the news, we believed that Whedon would be creating something original for himself, rather than basing it on the same storyline, and it sounds like we were right.
In the interview below, Whedon notes that they are instead doing their own origin story for Ultron, and suggests that Hank Pym isn’t going to be in the mix here. And that’s something which I’m glad to hear, because I really want Wright’s Ant-Man to be our introduction to the character, short of a post-credits scene after Age of Ultron (although, I personally think that Thanos will most likely be returning after the credits, but I could be wrong).
“A lot of people—because we called it Age of Ultron and there was a book, Age of Ultron just recently—assumed that was the storyline we are doing, which is not the case. We’re doing our own version of the origin story of Ultron. The other thing is, in the origin story, there was Hank Pym. So a lot of people assumed that he was going to be in the mix, but he’s not. Because 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. Ultron was their chief villain. He’s been the Avengers villain for so long. I was amazed anybody was surprised that it was going to be him in the movie. We are crafting our own version of it where his origin comes more directly from the Avengers we already know about.”
Whedon also notes that the sequel is going to be slightly darker in tone, and will involve more sci-fi than his original The Avengers, which is definitely something to get excited about, given how brilliantly Whedon tackles the genre.
“It’s a little bit darker than the other film because Ultron is in the house. There’s a science fiction element that I think is a bit stronger than the other film… It is very much a global Avengers film. A lot of the movie has to do with their place, not just in America, but in the world.”
Avengers: Age of Ultron is set to hit cinemas on May 1st, 2015, a date that can’t come fast enough. Vin Diesel has promised that we’ll be getting some exciting Marvel news by the end of the month, and I’m rather hoping that it will involve him coming on board in some capacity in the Avengers franchise, whether it be in Avengers: Age of Ultron, or the as-yet-untitled The Avengers 3. Time will tell.