Avengers: Age of Ultron took the box office by storm when it hit theaters in May, earning a whopping $1.3 billion in the two months it's been in theaters. After the release, director Joss Whedon revealed that making the sequel "broke him," and his future with Marvel remains unclear to this day. The director would never go into specifics about any problems he had with the studio, but some have wondered if he would ever consider making a director's cut, given any perceived issues he may have had with the film. During a Nerd HQ Q&A at Comic-Con, Joss Whedon reveled that a director's cut of Avengers: Age of Ultron will never happen.
"It has always been my ambition never to do a director's cut of anything, and always to make the movie with the studio that we both want to make. Ultron was very complex. There was a lot of back-and-forth. My instinct is no. Just as an artist, I'm super f---ing lazy and that sounds like it would be hard. I don't think there's interest in it, right now. You'll see a bunch of stuff on the DVD in extras that were meant to be there. But the narrative came together very close to the way that I hoped it would, and I don't think it needs me to constantly tweak it. I feel you put something out, and there it is. The first time I ever heard a re-mix, I was 13 and I was listening to the radio. I heard a song that had been re-mixed and it freaked me out so much that I turned off the radio and never listened to it since, literally. That is an actual truth. I felt like, 'Wait, that was the song. You can't do that.' Our entire culture consists of doing exactly that, but I'm not for it. If I tell a story, I want that to be the story I told. Ultron may have some transitions that I'm not 100% on board with. It's also one of the most ridiculously personal things I've ever put on screen. The fact that Marvel gave me that opportunity and supported it, I'm very happy and very proud of everybody that worked on it. I don't feel the need to go in and fix. I feel like, there she is."
The director has previously stated that, even before Marvel's The Avengers hit theaters, he knew that Avengers: Age of Ultron would feature both Ultron and Vision. The director revealed that there is a lot of "Christian iconography" in the superhero sequel, while singing the praises of Paul Bettany. Here's what the filmmaker had to say during the Q&A session.
"There's a lot of Christian iconography going on because everybody in that movie thinks that they're the savior, including Tony Stark. It's like, "Dude, look at your beard. You're a supervillain!" We evoke that stuff mostly because it's resonant to the idea of whether or not we can solve something, whether or not we can evolve, and whether or not we can be our best selves. Obviously, I don't want to say The Vision is Jesus and Ultron is the mean guy from the First Testament. I don't want to be specific, but everybody is obviously going to bring that into play. There's a shorthand to it that people understand. When somebody starts talking like that, they need to be shut down a little bit. As far as The Vision is concerned, he actually is a step above. What I love about him is Paul Bettany. When I took my first Avengers meeting, ever, on the first one, I said, "I don't know if we should do this, but if you do a second one, it has to be Ultron, and then he has to make The Vision. But they have to put Jarvis in The Vision, so that Paul Bettany can play The Vision 'cause only Paul Bettany can play The Vision. And three years later, I got to call Paul and say, "Will you do this thing?" God, he's so good! Maybe my favorite thing in the movie, and maybe the thing that I'm proudest of, is the conversation with Ultron at the end where he's just like, "Humanity is doomed," and The Vision says, "Yes." It gave me the chills/creeps so much that we finally made a, "We know he's worthy," kind of thing. We know he's a pure being, and yet he very dispassionately is like, "Oh, yeah, these guys are over," but with love. That is interesting to me. All of the religious overtones and all that iconography is deliberate, but it's meant to be not vague but interpreted individually."
Are you disappointed that there won't be a director's cut of Avengers: Age of Ultron? The movie obviously did quite well in theaters, but it still has fallen a bit short of Marvel's The Avengers' $1.5 million worldwide gross back in 2012. The director doesn't have any directorial projects lined up at the moment, but hopefully we'll hear what he's doing next very soon.