Over the last decade and change, the superheroic exploits of neon gods in spandex and armor have become one of our most reliable sources of blockbuster entertainment. Ever since Bryan Singer's X-Men and Sam Raimi's Spider-Man ushered in the modern age of the comic book movie, the Marvel Comics stable of iconic heroes have dominated the popular culture and multiplexes across the country. Now, even with comic book adaptations having saturated our sensibilities, The Avengers is something truly unprecedented.
It's the event movie towards which Marvel Studios and its head honcho Kevin Feige have been building since the studio's first feature, 2008's Iron Man. It's culmination of years of planning and ambitious, never-before-attempted franchise cross-pollination between The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger, and both Iron Man films. It's also an outstanding standalone piece of pop entertainment, with Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon ably providing thrills and juggling characters as writer-director.
Those characters Whedon so impressively juggles are played by an all-star cast, each of them capable of carrying their own franchise and many of them having done just that. IAR Managing Editor Jami Philbrick was amongst the global entertainment journalists present at the Los Angeles press day for The Avengers. Held in LA the day after the film's premiere, the press conference included Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner, Clark Gregg, and Cobie Smulders, all of whom were happy to discuss making the film together.
Since Nick Fury first showed up in Tony Stark's living room after the credits of 2008's Iron Man, the post-credits scene has been a ubiquitous presence in the Marvel Studios films, to the point that there have been seemingly endless jokes about Nick Fury recruitment scenes following any and every movie. Well, The Avengers is the ultimate Marvel movie, so it's only appropriate that it should have not one, but two additional scenes during and after the end credits.
May 4th marks a very busy day for Academy Award-nominee Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction) as the actor has not one, but two brand new movies opening on the same day.
First up for Jackson, is the highly awaited soon-to-be summer blockbuster The Avengers, where the actor stars as Marvel Comics’ resident badass Nick Fury. However, another movie opening that day starring the celebrated actor is the new thriller Meeting Evil, which is based on the popular novel by Thomas Berger. The film co-stars Luke Wilson (The Royal Tenenbaums), and was directed by Chris Fisher, who helmed the 2005 crime drama Dirty, as well as a string of sequels including S. Darko, Blue Crush 2, and Street Kings: Motor City.
Meeting Evil follows a disillusioned young man named John (Wilson), as a mysterious stranger named Richie (Jackson) takes him on a murder-fueled ride that transforms the weak-willed John into a desperate hero willing to go to any length to protect his family. In addition to Jackson and Wilson, the film also features performances from Leslie Bibb (Law Abiding Citizen), Peyton List (TV’s Mad Men), Tracie Thoms (The Devil Wears Prada), Ryan Lee (Super 8), and Muse Watson (TV’s Prison Break).
I recently had a chance to speak with director Chris Fischer about his new film Meeting Evil. The director discussed the new movie, adapting Thomas Berger’s novel, finding the film’s tone, casting Luke Wilson, and working with the great Samuel L. Jackson.
Just days out from the film's domestic release, The Avengers is pretty much everywhere right now, permeating the popular culture in that particular manner of a massively hyped blockbuster. It's only fitting, since this first-of-its-kind comic book movie is the culmination of years of ambitious universe building at Marvel Studios, assembling the heroes of Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger in one mega-movie.
When Marvel first announced the writer-director of the event movie towards which the studio has been striving, those unfamiliar with Joss Whedon may have scratched their heads. After all, the man Marvel chose to be at the helm of its crossover had but one directorial feature to his credit, 2005's sci-fi adventure Serenity. Whedon's fans, however, knew well that the creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, and Dollhouse was just the man for job.
His work on those television series demonstrated Whedon's unparalleled skill with witty dialogue and nimble character development, especially when juggling ensembles of characters, each with their own unique voice. Who better suited, then, to oversee the gathering of Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, and Mark Ruffalo as their respective superheroes? Apparently no one, since word on The Avengers is uniformly enthusiastic, and it looks as though the film actually lives up to the hype.
At the Los Angeles press day for The Avengers, Joss Whedon talked to journalists, including IAR Managing Editor Jami Philbrick. The writer-director discussed translating a comic book to the screen,the challenges of constructing the story, handling the characters, delivering the proper spectacle, and the importance of Steve Rogers.
Opening in theaters on May 4th is the highly anticipated and soon-to-be summer blockbuster The Avengers, which was produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. The film marks the culmination of a promise that began in 2008 with Iron Man and continued in the years to follow with Iron Man 2, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger, introducing new Marvel characters that all exist in one unifying cinematic Marvel universe. Marvel Studios has succeeded in the impossible, bridging together several different film franchises to create one world where all of Marvel Studio's on-screen characters can coexist and form the popular superhero-team The Avengers, based on the classic comic book co-created by the legendary Stan "The Man" Lee.
The Avengers was written and directed by fanboy favorite Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Cabin in the Woods) and truly stars an all-star cast that includes Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2) as Tony Stark/Iron Man, Chris Evans (Captain America: The First Avenger) as Steve Rogers/Captain America, Mark Ruffalo (Shutter Island) as Dr. Bruce Banner/Hulk, Chris Hemsworth (Thor) as Thor, Scarlett Johansson (Iron Man 2) as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow, Jeremy Renner (Thor) as Clint Barton/Hawkeye, Samuel L. Jackson (Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger) as Nick Fury, Tom Hiddleston (Thor) as Loki, Cobie Smulders (TV's How I Met Your Mother) as Maria Hill, Clark Gregg (Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor) as Phil Coulson, Stellan Skarsgard (Thor) as Erik Slevig, and Gwyneth Paltrow (Iron Man, Iron Man 2) as Pepper Potts.
IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had a chance to sit down with actor Clark Gregg to discuss his work on The Avengers. The actor talked about the new film, being a central part of the Marvel on-screen universe, having doubts early on that The Avengers would even get made, the emotional depth of the film, watching the original character her created become part of the Marvel comic book world and the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, his character's fear, working with writer/director Joss Whedon; his terrific script, and whether or not we will see Agent Phil Coulson in future Marvel Studio films.
Take a look at this, folks: The first official stills from Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino's next tale of bloody vengeance, bad language, and worse behavoir. So far, we've just seen a stylized poster and some meager spy photos from the Louisiana set, but today, on this most auspicious of days, we have for you two actual images straight out of Tarantino's Spaghetti Western-inspired Southern epic, including a first look at the two heroes and the big, bad villain.
Synopsis: Marvel Studios presents in association with Paramount Pictures “Marvel’s The Avengers”–the Super Hero team up of a lifetime, featuring iconic Marvel Super Heroes Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow. When an unexpected enemy emerges that threatens global safety and security, Nick Fury, Director of the international peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., finds himself in need of a team to pull the world back from the brink of disaster. Spanning the globe, a daring recruitment effort begins. Starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner and Samuel L. Jackson, and directed by Joss Whedon, “Marvel’s The Avengers” is based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series “The Avengers,” first published in 1963 and a comics institution ever since. Prepare yourself for an exciting event movie, packed with action and spectacular special effects, when “Marvel’s The Avengers” assemble in summer 2012. In “Marvel’s The Avengers,” superheroes team up to pull the world back from the brink of disaster when an unexpected enemy threatens global security.
Yet another new clip from The Avengers has made its way onto the "series of tubes" that is the internet. So far, clips from Marvel and Disney's superhero extravaganza have fallen into two categories, divided between big, heroic fisticuffs and clever, nimble dialogue exchanges. This new clip is definitely the latter, as Agent Coulson and Steve Rogers hang out on a quinjet.
Marvel superhero overload continues unabated as Disney promotes The Avengers with all due hugeness. There are mere weeks between now and the films domestic release, but if you're still looking to whet your appetite and have not yet been saturated by spoily bits, Marvel Studios has unveiled yet another official clip from The Avengers, the fifth so far.
The overwhelming tsunami of The Avengers promotion continues unabated in the days after the film's Hollywood premiere. Today, we've got two video bits to hold you over until Marvel's mega movie actually arrives in theaters next month. One is a brief clip straight from the film and the other is a featurette with some sweet bass and much interpersonal conflict. Both will make comic book fans with it were May 4th already.