Marvel Studios president of production Kevin Feige went on record this week at an Iron Man 2 set visit being held in Downey, California, about the future of all upcoming Marvel movie adaptations. He talked extensively about The Avengers, Thor, Ant-Man, Doctor Strange, and The First Avenger: Captain America. The biggest news is that The Incredible Hulk will be making his next appearance in The Avengers movie, which has a tentative release date of May 4th, 2012.
Feige stated, "It will have been four years since he was in a movie by that point. By 2012. I'd like to see him in it. I'm not being coy. We're just starting the story. I was on the phone with Zak Penn this morning. He's coming in next week and he's going to work on the outline this summer. It's so intertwined with what we're doing before it. I almost wanted to get done with production on Iron Man 2, and the scripts to Thor and The First Avenger: Captain America well underway, before we even started The Avengers."
Neither this, nor the two previous Hulk films rule out the possibility of a third stand-alone film for the mighty green giant. Feige continued, telling his enraptured audience, "Now at least we can talk about Hulk being onscreen and Hulk being in a movie. I think we can go to something that isn't a surreal experience and is more a Marvel movie experience. It can tie into and be a part of this Marvel Cinema Universe that I've talked about."
Feige also gave his thoughts on Ant-Man, saying, "I want to make Ant-Man one of these days. I think that'll be surprising and funny. I love Edgar Wright. What he likes about it is that when he says he's doing Ant-Man, people go, 'Ant-Man? What the hell is that?' I think that's funny." Doctor Strange was also a point of discussion, "I think Doctor Strange would kick ass. I think we've done very well at this street level superhero aspect of the Marvel Universe. I think with Thor, you'll see us cracking into the cosmic side of the Marvel Universe in a very good way that's never been done before in our movies. I'd love to get into that supernatural element. I think that Doctor Strange could be a good lynchpin into that universe with 'Werewolf By Night'. Maybe with Blade again someday. I would like to see that side of the Marvel Universe on screen."
Kevin also discussed the casting status as far as The First Avenger: Captain America goes, "There are only a handful of stars that mean anything here, much less overseas. I do think that will be a factor in it. As long as we have the freedom to cast the best actor for the part. Whether it's an actor who's been a great actor, but hasn't starred in marquee action movies before like Robert Downey, or somebody that came out of Australia that we've never heard of." Kevin then went on to mention Will Smith, relating how much he loves the "Truth" storyline, which introduced a black Captain America that pre-dates Steve Rogers, "I love the 'Truth' storyline. I think that's very cool. I wouldn't do that as a first Captain America movie though. I think that arc came about four or five hundred issues into the "Cap" run. I don't see us launching with that particular comic."
Finally, Kevin ended with a tease of the The Avengers movie, hinting, "I think The Avengers is going to have it's own vibe. It'll have a different tone than the other Marvel movies. It is about saving the world, because there's no other reason for characters that powerful to band together. I think the scope and the scale will feel like a much bigger thing. Like Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Whatever you had seen, whether Starscream was your favorite character or Megatron is your favorite character or Soundwave is your favorite character, you're going to see the experience of that epic thing coming together. I think it'll be the same thing with The Avengers."
Iron Man 2 is being directed by Jon Favreau and will once again star Robert Downey, Jr. The film opens May 7th, 2010.