The Cast of ‘The Avengers’ Describe Their Characters, Reveal Plot Details

Published 4 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:25 am,

Earlier today, we saw photographic portraits – or were they headshots? – of each of The Avengers, as well as official set photos of Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow interacting.

Now, character descriptions have been released of each of The Avengers from their respective actors – Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, and Jeremy Renner.

On his first meeting with Joss Whedon and the role Iron Man plays in the film, Robert Downey Jr. said:

“Well, I [told Whedon], ‘I need to be in the opening sequence. I don’t know what you’re thinking, but Tony needs to drive this thing.’ He was like, ‘Okay, let’s try that.’ We tried it and it didn’t work, because this is a different sort of thing, the story and the idea and the theme is the theme, and everybody is just an arm of the octopus. But what was I like? As usual, just ****ing aggressive and hurtful. Whatever. The usual.”

On the darker, more cynical version of Captain America in The Avengers, Chris Evans said:

“It’s just about him trying to come to terms with the modern world. You’ve got to imagine, it’s enough of a shock to accept the fact that you’re in a completely different time, but everybody you know is dead. Everybody you cared about. He was a soldier, obviously, everybody he went to battle with, all of his brothers in arms, they’re all dead. He’s just lonely. I think in the beginning it’s a fish out of water scene, and it’s tough. It’s a tough pill for him to swallow. Then comes trying to find a balance with the modern world.”

On Thor’s continued conflicted battle with his adoptive brother, Loki, Chris Hemsworth said:

 “I think [Thor's] motivation is much more of a personal one, in the sense that it’s his brother that is stirring things up. Whereas everyone else, it’s some bad guy who they’ve gotta take down. It’s a different approach for me, or for Thor. He’s constantly having to battle the greater good and what he should do versus … it’s his little brother there. I’ve been frustrated with my brothers at times, or family, but I’m the only one who is allowed to be angry at them. There’s a bit of that.”

Should make for some nice conflict between Avengers.

On Bruce Banner’s relationship with Tony Stark, Mark Ruffalo said:

“He’s the most – guy, but a total loose cannon. No one wants to set him off except for Iron Man, except for Downey, who just wants to see him pop. It’s funny, there’s a really cool dynamic between Tony Stark and Banner. Banner actually enjoys it, and finds it really refreshing. They’re a lot alike in a strange way. They’re both these kind of scientists who are mavericks, kind of renegades. Banner, for all his mild-mannered mythology, he’s still the dude who was testing some pretty crazy s–t on himself, so he has that rebel streak in him.”

It’s unclear what “He’s the most – guy” means, but everything else sounds fantastic - Especially the interplay between Tony Stark and Bruce Banner. Not only does Downey’s Stark want to be a jerk to Ruffalo’s Banner to set him off, but Banner kind of likes it, too. Could Stark be jealous of Banner? Is he unhappy because maybe he’s no longer the smartest guy in the room?

On Black Widow’s lack of super powers, Scarlett Johansson said:

“The other day we were doing this big reveal shot of all the Avengers. Thor has got his hammer, Cap’s got his shield, Hawkeye has his bow and arrow, and Hulk is huge. Then it pans over to me and I’ve got guns. Iron Man’s like, hovering above all of us, ready to go.  I was like, ‘Joss… um… do I look okay holding these guns?’ And he said ‘She’s a total badass. She’s a killing machine.’”

One of the most underwhelming things about Iron Man 2 was Johansson’s Black Widow, so hopefully Joss Whedon has taken some time to develop the character and make her more interesting.

On Hawkeye’s lack of super powers, Jeremy Renner said:

“The only sort of thing I cling to is the relationship of past experiences with Scarlett’s character, with them both being human. I can cling to that. [But he’s not insecure about not having super powers.] Quite the opposite. He’s the only one who can really take down The Hulk with his tranq tip arrows. He knows his limitations, but when it comes down to it, there has to be a sense of confidence in any superhero.”

Renner’s comment on Hawkeye’s tranq-tipped arrows meant to take down the Hulk bring to mind the first arc of The Ultimates comic book. Might we be seeing at least one major fight between the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers? Let’s hope so.

What do you think about the descriptions, Screen Ranters? Are you more excited about The Avengers now or is it high time that we see an official trailer?


Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.

The Avengers hits theaters May 4, 2012.

Source: Entertainment Weekly

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  1. These pics look….Um, yeah. Ruffalo looks like a total pedo. What’s Renner on? Hawkeye taking down the Hulk? Whatever this movie is still gonna be the boss of 2012.

    • Yup.

      Why is it so unbelievable? Even the Hulk needs to breath. Drop a trang tipped arrow in his throat or up his nose……

      While it may not work a second time the first time it should even with smart Banner.

      • When he says “tranq tip” I think he’s referring to arrows with a tranquilizer tip on them. In order to sedate.

  2. I understand why Johansson was cast, after all, guys need eye candy, yes? IMO, she is horrible as an actress. She’s very wooden and not believable in any role I’ve seen her in. Her talent seems to be sticking her chest out, showing cleavage and speaking with a bass toned voice. If there had to be a female role in the movie, why her, wasn’t there any better young actresses out there?!? Very disappointed and my only hope is that she’ll be limited on screen time. Otherwise, I’m looking forward to this movie and I hope Coulson (Clark Gregg) gets more time on screen, he’s terrific!

    • It could be worse, they could have pulled a transformers and put someone like Megan fox.. lol

      • I agree.

    • if they put too much focus on her I will be pissed. I give two shits about the black widow, especially when around people like Thor, Cap, IM, and Hulk

    • I have bad news for you: she’s one of the main cast members (and the only female one at that), so it’s pretty safe to say that she’s going to have a fair amount of screentime.

      Let’s look at the bright side: at least she’s interested in the role… she had to audition for IM2 and worked really hard to get the part. There are many other movies where she could have gotten just as much money, but she wanted to do a CB movie for the fans…

      Sure she’s a pretty bad actress, but she’s a dedicated one, she looks good (although she hasn’t been looking her best this past year) and she tries her best…

      • the black widow is freaking BORING though. Her scenes in IM2 were terrible

    • @Vicki S, EMILY BLUNT was initially pursued for the role of Black Widow. Initially Blunt was interested, but later declined. While Emily Blunt doesn’t have a body like Johansson, Emily Blunt would have been perfect for the role for the type of acting, presence, beauty, international persona and mystique that she naturally has. Marvel should have been just as aggressive with Emily Blunt as they were with Chris Evans, in order to get her to take the role because Chris Evans initially declined the role as Steve Rogers but Marvel actively pursued him even still and were able to get his agent to convince him to take the role even with his fear and reservations. The problem was that Marvel was running out of time quickly to cast another actress for Iron Man 2.

  3. Renner will probably subdue the hulk with tranq dart and save the (end) of the day like Hawkeye did in the Ultimates. Although, it should be Coulson. Im just sayin.

    • It should be NO ONE. A tranq dart? Really? That’d cheap ass cop out, didn’t they try to shoot Hulk with tranq darts in TIH, and they bounced off of him like nothing? I will be severely disappointed if they do anything like this in the movie.

      • I agree, even if Hawkeye’s arrows are supposed to be special. But that just makes me wonder why Tony couldn’t just snag a couple and use them himself.

        Vapors usually work on the Hulk though, right? Or is it just Banner? If they used a high concentration of the tranquilizer, it could put Hulk to sleep before his metabolism burned through the compound.

        • I would think just Banner. If the Hulk’s exterior is super strong, then so would his interior. His lungs could probably just filter it or something. Think about it, if the Army and SHIELD could just use knock out gas on the Hulk, if it was that easy, they woulda done it a while ago.

          • Well puttin one and one together, Renner interview and The Ultimates comics upon which most of this based it is looking like a tranq dart will put him down. Although in the comics the “tranq dart” was an adamantium tip, was the anti-Hulk serum and Hawkeye had to do it because he had the best aim (even better than Tony’s Iron Man targeting). So maybe this time it will be vibranium tipped? Another easy in for a Black Panther intro, eh? And the serum will probably introduced in the begining as something Bruce has been using to suppress the Hulk and when they use it agaisnt the Hulk it will be some sorta triple dose that would kill a human. It wouldnt be a simple tranq dart hahaha.

            • Yeah, I kinda agree with you and “CaptainAmerica” ;)

              I guess this is just one of those subjects where all we can do is what and see what happens.

          • From what I remember, the only time Hawkeye has been able to take out the Hulk was from one of his electric arrows, not a tranq.

            • Well it happened before in The Ultimates battle against the Skrulls/Chitauri. Hawkeye shot the Hulk with a adamantium tipped Hulk Serum arrow from helicopter as the Hulk leaped at him. Renner says in his interview above that he isn’t afraid b/c he is the only one who can take The Hulk out with tranq darts. So im pretty sure that it will happen again in the film.

      • maybe Stark invents something that will work?

        pulling that out of my ass but if the the dude can create the ironman suit and his own atom then maybe…

        • Hehe ;)
          Stark didn’t create his own “atom”, he discovered/rediscovered a new ELEMENT. — and by my guess/theory, that new element is similar/based on that which the cosmic cube is made out of (since we saw drawings of the cube in Howard Stark’s note book in IM2, when Tony was trying to create this new element) — I really hope they expand on this theory in The Avengers or IM3 (I’m so curious to know if I’m right :P)

          Sorry for being such an UBER-NERD though (I can’t help it) ;)

          • I don’t think that was the Cosmic Cube in Stark’s notebook. The drawing represents a 3D object. Look at the progression of drawings leading up to it. A dot, a line, a square, a cube, and a 4D cube. I can see the implication but i think it’s bigger meaning was the study of dimensions not a sketch of the Cosmic Cube.

            • Have you seen the Special Features on IM2 blu-ray?
              If you look at “Howard Stark’s Notebook” (where you can clearly see the entire notebook in detail with the footnotes) there is a lot of mention towards to cosmic cube.

              I.e. it WAS the cosmic cube in Howard Stark’s notebook.

  4. Awesome! Cant wait! Everything is clicking.

  5. My understanding of Black Widow in Iron Man 2 was that she was a perk in the movie, as well as a bridge to the Avengers, but she wasn’t the main attraction. I was never given the impression (by the advertising) that she would be anything more than what we got, so with that I have to say I disagree with SR. Black Widow wasn’t underwhelming IMO. It wasn’t her film. Hell, it was barely Iron Man’s film.

    And in spite of the criticism she got for not being believable, Favreau, Johanson, and her stunt double did one heck of a job. I’ve seen Scarlett’s fight scene several times on blu ray, and it never fails to impress me. Great choreography, great execution, and even a little humor.

    • I also found that fight scene to be quite good, and the scene where she and Stark talked before the party (when she made him a martini and brought him his selection of watches) – that scene was EXACTLY like a few pages out of an IM comic book.
      But, besides those two scenes, she wasn’t all that noticeable IMO.

    • I thought she was a total waste of space on screen, frankly. Even that fight scene was bland and boring, in my opinion.

  6. Okay. A couple of questions were raised and maybe here are some answers. In the Thor Blue Ray. There is no bar fight. There is a drunken old nordic song being sung. And we do see why Thor doesnt wear his helmet alot. He really doesnt like it. There is a mini movie with Coleson and another agent. It really does help explain why Tony Stark was in the Hulk. It seems the powers that be wanted the abomination for the group. Also Tony Stark is brilliant as far as tech and gadgets go. but Banner is smarter. I think the odd look in the oic of Banner is because he really has gone a little nuts as most brilliant guys do. I also think the Thor pic is as it should be. Yes its Hemsworth, and yes it captures the Im better then anyone in the room look. As it should.

    • I think it’s kinda unfair to say that Banner is smarter than Stark since they both specialize in completely different fields… Stark: mostly engineering and stuff like that, and Banner specializes in gamma radiation and bio-chem.

      In the comics, I believe Stark is smarter than Banner: the “smartest person in the world” is Hank Pym followed by Reed Richards, and then (I believe) it’s Stark, followed by Dr. Doom and then Banner… (I could be wrong, but last time the “ranks” were mentioned in a Marvel comic, I remember it being those guys in that order)
      It’s actually kinda funny because when these scientists get together in the comics they always mock each other about who is ranked as the smartest ; — I distinctly remember Hank Pym mocking a little kid (can’t remember his name, but he was the 9th smartest person in the world) and saying that “when I was your age, I was already the 7th smartest human on the planet”…

      • Your right except Reed Richards is the smartest human on earth. Dr Doom is close to Richards but is held back by his arrogance and is unparalleled in robotics, coupled with his knowledge of dark magic. Tony Stark, Bruce Banner, and Hank Pym are on similar levels of intelligence but as you said, they all specialize in certain fields making them pros at their talents but are usually seen a level below Doom and Richards.

        • @lastdragonOn89, You sir are correct! DING! DING! DING! Hank Pym comes in at 3rd place after Dr.Doom with Dr.Reed Richards being numero uno. Hank Pym would be technically smarter than both Stark and Banner because of the fact that he is a master at Bio,Tech/Nano,and Sub-Atomic/Chemistry,Wave Frequencies. If Stark, Banner, and Pym were in one room together then Hank would be the smartest. The problem with Hank and what limits him are his psychological problems and dealing with self esteem. His psychological problems always hold him back and affect others around him and that’s including both 616 and Ultimate Hank Pym. Both versions of Pym have mental problems but Ultimates version is a lot more over the top with it.

  7. There ‘HAS’ to be a major battle between The Hulk & the rest of the heroes…it’s an iconic image from the comics….

    Loving it all…role on 2012 !

  8. I still say it’s complete BS that Ed Norton isn’t gonna be playing Banner. FOR SHAME!

    • He didn’t wanna do it! Holy Christ!

    • Dude!
      Just stop!

    • To be honest, I want to see the Hulk, not Banner. Sure, Banner can be in it a bit but I want the Hulk mostly.

      • Totally Agree ! The movie’s and comics weren’t called Bruce Banner…we want to see and hear what The Hulk does & thinks – not just the creature who appears then then disappears after smashing stuff up….!!

  9. I’ve got the itch
    For a trailer hitch!
    Hook us up, Marvel!

  10. yes he did. but he wanted to have full rewrite power and be much more important (Big star ego)

  11. Tranq tipped darts on The Hulk? Maybe in Joss Whedons Avenger movie, but not in Happymans. :)

  12. What is up with Thor? The pics I’m seeing do not look like Chris Hemsworth from the Thor movie.

  13. happyman  you seem like a nice guy take a chill pill, relax.After accidentally eating a fly, in the vein of the nursery rhyme, I ate a spider, a bird, a cat, a dog, a goat, a cow and a horse.Or, as it’s more commonly known, a kebab.Never judge a book by its movie

    • What exactly does all of that mean?

  14. harry dean stanton should be in it dont y’all think? he could
    play hawkeyes dad

  15. I like the cast.. all of them.. I don’t give a crap if Scarlett Johansson isnt Meryl Streep… This a comicbook movie… The Black Widow character isnt that deep that you need a great actress to portray her.
    My main thoughts have been about the villain…who is the villain…other than Loki… Is it the Skrulls..or someone/something else…?

    • First of all, it’s a comic book movie? So? It still needs to be good, and she needs to be worth watching to some degree or another. I’m not looking for Meryl Streep in a Black Widow costume — I’m just looking for “interesting.” Whatever that means. Not super complicated, mind you! Just not totally worthless as a character, either.

  16. Hi, TheAvenger, thanks for giving a reposing to my comments.

    Okay, I complete with you about Cap needing the help of his team to beat a few guys in the bar.

    I take that away but still I think Cap would be better off with fighting the few guys in the bar alone so it will show how different his world is now compare to the world where he live 60 years.

    Maybe the few guys in the bar are Nazis where Cap beats the crap out of them for harassing a waitress and making racial taunts.

    If that happen in the world, it will show how the world was when he was in war and it will show how he was now.

  17. Happyman that IS Hemsworth. His hair is longer then it was in THOR. Its actually right this time.

    • I believe you, I think it is him. I think they have messed around alot with his hair and face to make him appear more “godlike”? Anyways, I’m sure he’ll look cool as Thor in the movie.

  18. I don’t get what RDJ was getting at. Was he describing his character as a jerk or was he slipping in a legitimate concern/issue with Whedon’s directing style? The latter is what worries me.

    • Nah… RDJ was just joking around…

  19. I think there will be a very heartfelt scene with Cap finally getting that date with Peggy. She will be very frail and old and I can totally see them slow dancing together while she holds him and then puts her head on his chest. Either him, her or both probably would shed a tear, (the audience too. A POWERFUL dramatic scene like this scene might either be in The Avengers or Cap 2.

    • Excuse me while I throw up. :-D

      Just kidding. That would be a cool, emotional, scene.

    • I was expecting to see that scene at the end of Cap 1 but it never happened: instead of the movie ending at “I had a date”, Steve and Fury take a walk through the city while Fury tries to explain what’s happened in the world since Cap disappeared – Fury sees how upset Cap is with everything that’s happened and leads him to a house in Brooklyn – he tells Cap to wait outside while he knocks on the door and goes inside – soon Fury comes out and tells Cap go join him inside – Cap goes in and sees Peggy standing in front of him – Fury goes outside and leaves the two of them alone for a moment – Cap can’t say anything because of the shock, and Peggy puts on some music – she asks him to dance and the movie fades out with that touching scene…

      (Or something like that ;))

  20. is Mark Ruffalo auditioning for zoolander 2?

  21. I have to agree with the pic of Hemsworth. This symmetry of his eyes look “off”. There is also some other strange things about his features. I’m convinced however, that HE is the one that doen’t like wearing the helmet. I hope that in Thor 2 that he wears it more often. Maybe one that is less combersome or something because he does look like Thor without the helmet but he looks much MORE like THOR, The God of Thunder(form the comics) when he wears it. Tom Hiddleston doesn’t have a problem wearing that HUGE helmet as Loki which looks WAY more combersome and uncomfortable for him as Loki, so why does Hemsworth get to choose NOT to wear it. He needs to man up and put that helmet on.

    • I don’t think it is Hemsworth that doesn’t like the helmet. In the deleted scenes on the blue ray, he and Loki mock each other about their helmets but it is obvious Thor doesn’t like his.

      • @john “Kahless”, How could the character Thor not like to wear his helmet when he wears it like 90% of the time in the comics. It was someone’s decision for him not to wear the helmet cinematically because more than likely it is combersome, heavy, and probably doesnt work well during action scenes. Maybe it flops or moves around too much. Either way 616 Thor definitley does not dislike his helmet unless this is more of(supposed to be) Ultimate Thor

  22. I believe that this movie, well I have faith in it. Placing Joss Wedon as the director is going to be exciting. After all he is the director of one of the most top rating hit series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Joss seems to think out of the box, go where most directors wouldn’t even dare to. Sure Dollhouse was a flop but if the man has a brain he will know better then to screw up with this.

  23. so renner as confirmed he’s using trick arrows, awesome, starks going to be a jerk, awesome and i think with the thor getting back thing i would have no problem with them having built the bifrost for him to get back, would make up for them getting all huffy about the bridge being destroyed in thor, just rebuild it you lazy asgardians

    • Odin did say Mjolnir was a weapon to destroy or a tool to build; I always figured Thor would rebuild the Bifrost with Mjolnir.

  24. Hemsworth is channeling the late great Michael Jackson in his pic.

  25. Of course, as I am sure everyone knows, that translating a movie of this magnitude as well as giving 4(out of the 6) characters who each previously had their own films, somewhat a shared amount of screen time; as well as incorpotating the two newer additions aka Hawkeye and Black Widow, will most definitely be no easy feat. However, that is a pretty obvious fact, how difficult it is, so I really don’t think anyone should knock the film. I know we all have seen our fair share of just really, really bad comic-book movie adaptations (Ghost Rider? ? ?) But each of these characters bring their own unique persoanlities together, which will indeed stir up conflict as well as cause for some pretty spectacular fight scenes. To see how they all react to eachother, especially in scenes of battle, will most definitley be interesting. I am very excited to see this movie, as i loveddd Thor, Captatin America, andd the Iron Man movies (most notably, the 1st one) So we shall see!! All in all though, i love these character screenshots and little quotes about their role in the film, makes for an exciting movie. I just hope it lives up to the hype!!

  26. Sounds like the animation series storyline. Same characters same sort of storyline. But no word from Jack Fury? Hope they adding the Enchantress and her Enforcer to the story.

  27. Regarding Mark Ruffalo vs Ed Norton for the hulk role; Rufallo was a way better fit. He’s a nerdy scientist guy, not a hollywood hunk, as my GF refers to him! :s …I would’ve cast Norton as Captain America, what with his brilliant film history of curb stomping nazi’s! Especially since Chris Evans already plays the Human Torch in those mediocre Fantastic 4 movies. How we gonna get Reed Richards in a room with Banner and Stark now? Casting department has kinda bunged things up here.

  28. Can’t wait to see Robert Downey Jr :D

    I did hope that Wolverine would be in this but ah well, :)

  29. What about Tom Huddleston?! Some of us would like to hear what he has to say about himself as Loki.