EW has our first look at Marvel's next big villain Ultron on the cover of their latest magazine, which offers a first look at the Phase Two sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron. Also featured on the cover are our first look at Chris Evans, returning as Captain America, and Robert Downey Jr., back as Tony Stark (aka Iron Man). Take a look and then read on for more information.

<strong><em>Avengers: Age of Ultron</em></strong> EW Cover

Avengers: Age of Ultron begins with our core group of superheroes tired from their previous solo adventures, and they now live in a world where S.H.I.E.L.D. has been destroyed. A new menace looms in the shadows, one that could destroy the earth with its bare hands. Meet Ultron, the latest big, bad Marvel villain.

Robert Downey Jr., who returns as Tony Stark, had this to say about the upcoming sequel, which will have a strong presence at Comic-Con 2014 next weekend,

"What you said about abdication is apt, but I think it's also about recognizing limitations. The downside of self-sacrifice is that if you make it back, you've been out there on the spit and you've been turned a couple times and you feel a little burned and traumatized."

Tony Stark creates Ultron so that he can take a much needed break, along with the rest of the Avengers. Ultron is a self-aware, self-teaching, artificial intelligence designed to help assess threats, and direct Stark's Iron Legion of drones to battle evildoers. But there is no human emotion hiding inside of him, which causes some problems. After taking inventory, he realizes that his world would be much better if he eradicated the human race.

Director Joss Whedon explains,

"Ultron sees the big picture and he goes, 'Okay, we need radical change, which will be violent and appalling, in order to make everything better'; he's not just going 'Muhaha, soon I'll rule! He's on a mission. He wants to save us."

Ultron is not just a robot, but also a program capable of uploading himself and disappearing not just into the clouds but also The Cloud, and he can rebuild himself, taking on stronger physical forms each time he is seemingly defeated.

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EW's upcoming issue will reveal an early scene from the movie, and explains how Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver and Vision all come into play. It will also delve more into Ultron's rebooted backstory, updated for today's technological environment, which has changed greatly since the character was introduced in 1968.

B. Alan Orange at Movieweb
B. Alan Orange