The titular villain of The Avengers: Age of Ultron is a classic foe going back many years in Marvel Comics history. However, in Joss Whedon’s sequel to his game-changing team-up film, Ultron is getting a new origin story, and will be brought to life onscreen by The Blacklist star James Spader, in a motion-capture performance.
Aside from incorporating Spader’s mannerisms or capturing the comic book essence of the character, we know that Ultron will get upgrades to his physical form in the movie – at least three that we’ve counted so far. Today’s new Avengers 2 poster both compliments the recent line of character posters from the film and shows off at least one of Ultron’s forms.
Check out the latest Avengers 2 character poster that Marvel put out:
The body we see here seems to be the middle version of Ultron’s upgrades – or at least one of the middling ones (if there are more than three versions). The first version will presumably be the Iron Man armor look, when Ultron is a rogue program in one of the armor drones Tony Stark is allegedly using to police the world.
The second body is presumably what we see above, when Ultron becomes independent of his creators; the third (and most advanced) version we know of will be “Ultron Prime,” which trailers have indicated will build connections to the Black Panther movie, by having Ultron’s final body made of vibranium, the Marvel metal used in Captain America’s shield – which hails from Black Panther’s African homeland of Wakanda.
Ultron has had many upgrades and re-designs during his long history in the comics, and both the secondary and prime forms of the villain in the movie carry signatures of those comic book roots. Yes, Ultron’s powers and origin may be tweaked for the MCU continuity, but the villain seems to be intact in spirit (and in Spader’s portrayal) – something that Joss Whedon felt was easy enough to do:
You know, he was an angry robot. Angry all the time! That’s one of the things that drew me to him – this guy’s angry! Angry for like 50 years! You know, they reinvented him in Ultimates and stuff. At one point he was a beautiful woman… I’m not doing that one! I loved him when I read the comics as a kid, because of the scope and the sci-fi and what the team was going through, but I never looked to Ultron himself in the comics for why I love Ultron. I had an idea that I sort of extrapolated from that, so in that way he’s sort of a new guy. But he’s been a tricky one to nail down.
We’ll get to see the full evolution of Ultron onscreen; for now, check out the rest of the Avengers 2 characters posters, as well as the team one-sheet:
Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” stars Robert Downey Jr., who returns as Iron Man, along with Chris Evans as Captain America, Chris Hemsworth as Thor and Mark Ruffalo as The Hulk. Together with Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, and with the additional support of Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Don Cheadle as James Rhodes/War Machine, Cobie Smulders as Agent Maria Hill and Stellan Skarsgård as Erik Selvig, the team must reassemble to defeat James Spader as Ultron, a terrifying technological villain hell-bent on human extinction. Along the way, they confront two mysterious and powerful newcomers, Wanda Maximoff, played by Elizabeth Olsen, and Pietro Maximoff, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and meet an old friend in a new form when Paul Bettany becomes Vision.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron releases in theaters on May 1 2015, followed by Ant-Man on July 17 2015, Captain America: Civil War on May 6 2016, Doctor Strange on November 4 2016, Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May 5 2017, Spider-Man on July 28, 2017, Thor: Ragnarok on November 3 2017, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 on May 4 2018, Black Panther on July 6 2018, Captain Marvel on November 2 2018, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2 on May 3 2019 and Inhumans on July 12, 2019.