Edward Norton In For The Avengers If You Want Him To Be

Published 5 years ago by

avengers incredible hulk 2 as villain ed norton Edward Norton In For The Avengers If You Want Him To Be

A hot topic for Marvel movie fans ever since The Incredible Hulk debuted the same summer as Iron Man in 2008 is whether or not Edward Norton would be back to reprise the role in a sequel, or more importantly, The Avengers. There were some widely publicized disagreements between Norton and Marvel about what version of the film made the final cut and ever since then, it’s been unclear on his future with the studio and their franchise plans.

MTV had the opportunity to speak with Ed Norton about his new charity project, Crowdrise.com, and took some time to discuss the Marvel movie universe. While he said he hadn’t yet seen Iron Man 2 – a movie he was once rumored to cameo in – he did leave the question about his return open to the fans.

“Well, if people want it all to come together, they’ve got to email Marvel and say, ‘This is what I want,’”

I feel like we’ve already been doing this for two years. I don’t get it; Why is this still unconfirmed?

The four key characters that will all have had their own interconnected solo movies out in time to lead in to The Avengers are the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America. We all know that, we all saw the movies and they made them that way intentionally. Yet ever since The Incredible Hulk came out and the news of disagreements between Norton and Marvel about the script and story, there’s really been nothing official on the Hulk’s role in The Avengers.

In my opinion, Hulk needs to be a part of that movie and Edward Norton needs to be Bruce Banner. His acting skills and his portrayal of Bruce Banner would make for brilliant chemistry in conjunction with Robert Downey Jr.’s wit, the God of Thunder’s stature and the 1940s charm of Chris Evans’ Captain America.

As far as I’m concerned, Norton is either in or out and according to him, he doesn’t know anything about it. So, this is either a big secret to be revealed later, or Marvel is holding off as long as they can to drop the biggest, fattest piece of disappointment from their studio to date.

Click to continue reading about the history of Edward Norton, The Avengers and Marvel Studios…


hulk Edward Norton In For The Avengers If You Want Him To Be

Sadly, this back and forth on Norton’s involvement with The Avengers has swayed from likely to unlikely for far too long. Last Fall, things seemed on the positive side with Norton saying that the idea of Hulk being partially a villain of sorts, or at least a high-tension character in The Avengers would be “fun” like it was in the comics (he’s a reader and a big fan) and he even went as far as saying the Hulk’s return was “only a matter of time.” Two months later, in interviews he seemed less enthusiastic again about the idea and that was it until Marvel President Kevin Feige dropped Hulk’s name as one of the characters involved when discussing The Avengers.

Was that a confirmation then that Hulk would be an Avenger? With the way things had been going we still couldn’t say. But things got even better when Norton revealed in March that his agents were talking with Marvel. That was the last we heard so it seems there’s definite interest from both parties. We know from what Norton’s said in interviews that he would only play along if his character has a meaningful role, something that developed the character beyond how we saw him in The Incredible Hulk where he’s finally learned some control over his other (larger and greener) self.

This task of giving each superhero in The Avengers a significant part is a monumental undertaking for Joss Whedon and company. And while Norton says he’s not yet met Whedon about the movie, I hope that changes soon.

As for Norton’s statement, yes, we all want you to play Bruce Banner in The Avengers. Marvel, make it happen.

What do you think about Ed Norton’s future with The Avengers?

Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Iron Man 2 is currently in theaters everywhere; Thor opens May 5, 2011; The First Avenger: Captain America hits July 22, 2011 and The Avengers is scheduled to debut May 4, 2012

Source: MTV

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  1. Norton is a great actor and I really liked TIH. But I just wonder if this is just another way for Norton to get the money he and his agent are asking for. The Avengers, with the effects and the A-list actors, will be a huge financial undertaking, possibly the largest budget in movie history. I’d like to see him in the film but if he really wants to be in it, he may have to make concessions himself. Marvel, maybe, could pay him what he wants with the provision that if the movie does not make the money back before leaving theaters, he must pay part of his salary back (they could possibly use this for the other actors as well). I’m certain Marvel knows we fans want Norton in the movie; but they are a business and this movie will be an extraordinary risk.

    Also, I hope they make the CGI Hulk a little better this time around. I actually thought the Ang Lee CGI Hulk was better (the movie itself was a snorefest).

    • If money is the main factor, why not just pay Edward Norton up front what they don’t pay Robert Downey, Jr.? He only gets a portion of his salary up front and the rest of it is contingent on him passing random drug tests and finishing the shoot. So Norton gets paid in full up front and Downey, Jr. gets the rest of his check after post-production filming wraps – - maybe with the first round of box office numbers.

  2. My theory is that people loved “Iron Man” and “The Incredible Hulk” is because how ground in reality they are – - and that is due to the acting talents of Robert Downey, Jr. and Edward Norton.

    These two actors clearly care about the characters they’re playing. I have no doubt that Norton’s preferred version of “The Incredible Hulk” is better than what Marvel released. Marvel should just realize that an incredibly talented actor, wants to not only help make the character real, but help make the story better over all.

    That Norton cares enough to at least stipulate that his character needs to show growth and not simply be a gimick is invaluable in an actor. Count your blessings Marvel and resign Edward Norton. You won’t find anyone else to play Bruce Banner better.

    • I hope they make a Hulk sequel soon enough. A year or two after The Avengers would be good. I want to see the Leader.

    • No question, Ed was the right choice. The way Marvel has planned this, I just don’t see any way for Banner/Hulk to be meaningfully included in the first Avengers outing. We really need a Hulk II before then to set everything up. At this point it seems like Marvel either wants Hulk compartmentalized like Spidey and the FF, or maybe their thinking about a Hulk II [i]after[/i] Avengers. That could readily allow for Hulk being in an Avengers sequel.

      • Here’s the deal: for there to be another Hulk movie –
        they don’t need to work on Norton’s character, or even work him into
        the Avengers.

        They need to work on the HULK’S VISUAL REPRESENTATION.

        What disappointed people about the Hulk wasn’t Norton – it was the
        Broad Daylight Closeup shot of his poorly rendered, unconvincing
        CGI face!

        Even Peter Jackson never dared do that kind of shot w/ Gollum. He’d at least put him under
        low moonlight or give him an exaggerrated expression of pain in reaction to sunlight to distract you from how fake he really looked (i.e. technology’s limits).

        If the Avengers movie would include a convincing representation of the Green Goliath – which 2/3rds of ‘the Incredible Hulk’ DID possess (the Brazil scenes / the street fights shot at night)

        then the public will come CLAMORING for another Incredible Hulk solo film, starring the completely convincing Ed Norton as Bruce Banner.

        • i didnt think Hulks face was bad. i thought it was better than the first one. and i really doubt it was very disappointing with people.. i’ve never heard of anyone who thought that. i really liked the movie, didnt think anything was bad. and i certainly didnt care much for his face! yeah if you look really close you can see his face is a bit fake, WOW disappointing.. really?

          • All I can tell you is I’m a lifelong Hulk fan, and was able to convince
            several non-Hulk fans to come along for the movie – and that was
            their reaction. The early scenes in Brazil got them excited b/c they had a
            degree of mystery, but the mid-movie reveal of his face turned them off, and
            it was hard to recover after that, basically.

            These were writers & artists so – they understood the motivations of the characters, were convinced of Hulk’s appearance/behavior in the caves, & the end of the film, but when they closed up on his face in broad daylight they were like – “Ewww -FAAAAKE!” in the theatre.

            They all agreed it was more enjoyable than the first, but speaking as non-comics fans, his CG-appearance was enough to have them 2nd guessing whether they could empathize w/ the Hulk as a character. Therefore, they didn’t enjoy the movie.

            This is 2 separate conversations, too, as I brought 2 different groups to see the movie. It seems that the “Uncanny Valley” effect works somewhat subliminally, and when something looks that fake, it takes people ‘out’ of their immersion in the movie.

            The only other complaint was one girl who said Banner was ‘too wimpy’ & Liv Tyler was unconvincing. She understood he’s supposed to be a scientist, but thought at times he was so wimpy she couldn’t care about the character. And she just didn’t believe Liv could love a man who wimped out in bed.

            I’m just calling it as I see it. It is of utter importance for the success of these movies that they at least consider the difficulties non-fans investing in the fiction of these comics films – as they are the ones who will determine by word of mouth whether it is a phenomenon, or a flop.

            • Well, I’m a non-fan of Hulk and I wasn’t put off by how his face looked. We’re dealing with a physical condition that is utterly improbable. Even if his face looked as your describing it should with the CG, I still know in my own mind a human face would never look like that.

              But . . . it’s a comic book character! I expect things to be pretty unbelievable. The broader segment of the population who watch films aren’t all going to be writers or artists, but I can see how writers and artists would be disappointed. I just don’t think your average movie goer will be/has been.

              • The other problem was – as evidence by Clash of the Titans – the director, Louis Letterier.

                He is clearly very adept at directing action-paced sequences.

                Stringing them together w/ any type of human drama is his clear weakness.

                Get any other director, perhaps one chosen by Norton (to make up for Marvel fudgin up his version of the movie) and – this being a comic book movie – add a bit more humor that wins folks over to the inherent unbelievability of the subject, and you’ve got yourself another Iron Man.

                Same goes for Cap. If people can’t laugh at it a little, they’re going home having wasted 7-10 bucks.

                ALSO: (I don’t know why they never figured this out) RICK JONES!

                Peter David’s run on the Hulk included a TON of humorous asides by Rick Jones, Clay Quartermain, and the Gray Hulk.

                If they could somehow pull off a convincing CGI Gray Hulk, and throw in a humorous teen-sidekick to play him off of, then I’d say you have yourself a hit!

                As it is – the last Hulk movie simply didn’t make enough box office to ‘Greenlight’ a sequel. So any solution has to be seen from a ‘winning over broader demographics’ standpoint , as well as improving the film overall.

                There’s nothing of the box office performance of Incredible Hulk to say – ‘Greenlight Sequel – go to town!” the way they did with Iron Man.

                • I would think that producers would choose to go for Red Hulk over Grey Hulk. It would appeal more to the public and hint at a “total destruction” Hulk, because red=danger.



      it would be the best movie ever if you were in it…

      it wouldnt be optimal if you werent in it…



  3. Here’s my question: what exactly does the world need the Avengers for, anyway? We have a grand total of one super-powered threat thus far, and Hulk took care of that. SHIELD was nowhere to be found while gamma-fied monsters were duking it out in a major American city. Do they only intervene when asked by a government? If so, that would curtail any role as independent peacekeepers on the world stage acting as SHIELD sees fit. So what’s Fury’s game here? We know that no one hero is the center of his universe, and we now see their stories are happening almost simultaneously. I think there’s some serious crap afoot, potential world-shaking badness that SHIELD is keeping tabs on, but informing almost nobody about. That’s why they need the Avengers. I’m betting its one of the heavier hitters from the Marvel rogue’s gallery.

    • I’d bet that information on the Hulk was kept under wraps. The military doesn’t really like the government sticking it’s nose into their research.

      Some guy escaping from terrorists and then a (seemingly) nother guy has built a suit that can fly and has militaristic capabilities? Plus, the events toward the middle of “The Incredible Hulk” are seen playing at the end of “Iron Man 2.”

      Tony Stark’s cameo in the credits of “The Incredible Hulk” show that after the destruction of the American city, S.H.I.E.L.D did send an envoy to try and helo with their problem.

    • Also, throughout the whole Incredible Hulk movie Shield is everywhere. Look and listen and you will hear phrases like “SHIELD reports” and see their logo everywhere on the General’ stuff. The most noticable SHIELD moment? When the computer program traces the Mr.Blue/Mr.Green converation and the SHIELD logo fills up the entire movie screen.

  4. Hulk without Orton, is a bad move. Also, Hulk 2 should have been given a green light by now.

  5. Just say No to Norton IMO.

  6. meh If Norton is in the Avengers he should be in it for all of 5 mins. Just enough to Hulk out.

    Banner was not in the Avengers The Hulk was and while Banner “is” The Hulk he is not pivotable (Banner) to The Avengers.

    while I enjoy Nortons acting and would support him in a Hulk 2 I am serious when I say he is not needed for The Avengers.

  7. As much as I admit that seeing such sterling actors as RDJ and Norton seems too good to refuse, I am a bit concerned about fans’ response to a heavily loaded movie. Judging from Spiderman 3 and Xmen 3 ( a film I unashamedly enjoyed), it appears superhero movies with too much going on don’t get good reviews. Xmen 2 escaped this thru Singer’s genius: action scenes were justifiable and necessary without being gratuitous. Very difficult to escape gratuitous with Thor and Hulk in one team. Either fans/geeks complain about too little action for their favourite characters or critics slam it for being unserious. The devil and deep blue sea. Hard to pull off, i suggest Norton just has a cameo or Hulk come towards end/climax of movie

  8. Magnus maybe I’m just really tired it is my bad time but I find ur comment very confusing u said there was nothing wrong with his face then at the end u said the face was bad.

    Anyway I’d love to see Norton in a Hulk2 honestly I thought it was better than Iron Man TIH was good all the way through no really bad moments dragging it down.

  9. @jessie I totally agree. These characters wouldn’t be much without the charismatic acting. Loved Edward Norton in the Incredible Hulk. Much better than the Eric Bana version. Personally though I hope Norton does more flicks like the very under appreciated Death to Smoochy…definitely one of my favorite Edward Norton performances, along with Fight Club of course.

  10. Norton nailed the part, he needs to come back.

    As for Hulk/Banner’s role in the Avengers, I wonder how many of us are remembering that these movies do not stay exclusively within the realm of the original comic series. They are writing their own material as well as pulling from the Ultimate Universe. Recall that Banner, not Hulk, was on the original Ultimates team and Hulk was their first villain (i use the term loosely).

    Having Banner on the team would be great, though having him Hulk-out for the villain would not be a good film plot. Maybe it is just a sub-plot, who knows, but it could work. I think we need an open mind about this, especially since Marvel has not disappointed us yet with their films.

    • The latter part of what you said is how I’ve really hoped they go with this, though they might reverse the order: start with The Avengers trying to contain the Hulk, and resolving it brings Banner on board. I kind of hope the movie maintains a little bit of a hunt feel, though hopefully the last one with that approach since the previous Hulk films have done that.

      Ideally, I hope they make Hulk an initial problem to contain, and, in the process, enlist Hulk/Banner to deal with a greater threat towards the latter half of the film. I just don’t know what THAT threat would be.

      That, and I’d kill to see Norton/Banner and Downey Jr./Stark interact.

      • I can picture Tony Stark coming up to Bruce Banner and immediately (without any subterfuge) launching into how he knows the problem and he’d like to help.

        Stark is all cocky and knowing and condescending like we love him to be.

        Banner is looking around wondering who the hell this guy is. He has an incredulous look on his – - bewliderment ablaze when Tony buys Banner a drink.


    • But they kinda of messed up the Ultimates Hulk already now havent they?

      So what are they going to do The Avengers centered around Banner? The reason they are making the “other” films is so they dont have to cover a character and or center on one character in the Avengers.

      Again no offense to Norton… however The Avengers can be done without him. Would it be nice with him? Yeah but all we need is the Hulk.

  11. He was okay. I wouldn’t mind.

  12. I think Ed Norton was an “incredible” Bruce Banner and would make a fantastic addition to an “Ultimate Avengers” story line. He’s not the meek mild mannered Bruce Banner, but was just enough to really fit in with the story. I enjoyed Incredible Hulk much more than the first due to a better story line, better acting, and better effects. No, they weren’t perfect, but I think it was closer than the first.

  13. Because it is Hollywood and not our comic book universe, adjustments are always made; true fans always get angry at the changes but are lined up first to buy the tickets, and the rest of the public who has never opened a comic book in their life don’t notice a bit. Sad to say, the majority are the non-fans. No different than sitting in the theatre with die-hard Twilight or Harry Potter fans who criticize every single moment of the movie that doesn’t follow the lore. Ed Norton gave us a Bruce Banner than Eric Bana did not, and his charisma in every movie he has ever done is what the public would want to see. Even if it is five minutes here and there, even if the big green Hulk plays a good guy or a villian, we are going to want to see Ed onscreen. He saved the Hulk franchise from Ang Lee’s mistakes; Ed came onboard and made us fall in love with Hulk again, aside from the much better CGI and overall story line. I want Ed in it, and I want another Hulk solo movie. Once all these movies are made and available in a huge Blu Ray box set, just give me an outline of what movie to play in what order so I can keep up with the timeline.

  14. A good question to the Avengers is “Why is Nick Fury making the Avengers?” Is it the Masters of Evil, the Skrull, The Kree, Kang, or what?

  15. Hopefully he signs on because he was perfect as Bruce Banner.

  16. Norton – if you are reading this or listening. I think we can all agree you made a great Bruce Banner. You NEED to reprise the roll for the Avengers.. the time lapse would be perfect to understand how you would be “in control” of the Hulk now and possibly use it within the team atmosphere. Please consider bringing him back. I grew up on comics, stories, drawing and I’m an artist/pencil’r now. When watching these movies, gives me chills as it’s so cool to see these characters I could only read about 2o years ago (30 now) on paper come to life. It gives you chills when the right people make those very characters stand out and bring something to life. Heck, if I had a mind at all, I would have gone into acting and not fine arts and comic illustration! LOL


  17. He was amazing as The Hulk.
    Edward Norton is the only man for the role.
    Also :3 he isn’t an overrated actor like some *coughsChristianBale*

  18. Bale over rated? Maybe u could of said that 4 years ago when every one loved and praised him but the last three years it’s popular to hate and insult him. An actor can’t be overated if most people hate them. Bale is talented but sadly the public is fickle one day they praise ur talent but you get to famous and become a success or make one public slip up suddenly ur a no talent hack.

  19. Edward Norton, whether hes in the main cast of Avengers or not, is the man I want to see as the Hulk. Nuff said.