The Avengers has already earned its spot among the top-three box office grossing films of all-time and director Joss Whedon is already signed to write and direct the sequel that’s releasing three summers from now. For Japanese moviegoers however, The Avengers only hit theaters last week, which means Whedon is still working the press rounds for the film which first opened nearly four months ago.

In chatting with Japanese online press, Whedon reflected on some of the challenges in developing the film and its array of various characters, while also teasing what’s next for the franchise.

The following bullet points were pulled from the translated versions of Gizmodo Japan and Kotaku Japan’s interviews with Joss Whedon. The full translated transcripts are not clearly understandable in English so we’ve pulled the highlights:

  • Whedon admits writing The Avengers screenplay was especially hard in giving each character their share of story and screentime.
  • He loved working with the Hulk and Loki characters.
  • For the sequel, Whedon wants a somewhat smaller-scale film in that it’ll be more personal, but teases larger event, team and villain.
  • Whedon teases a bigger team for The Avengers 2, with at least one new character he’s adding.
  • “The Avengers” is more than a recognizable brand and will be used to promote Whedon’s TV series.
  • Whedon will be working with Marvel Studios President of Production and producer Kevin Feige on organizing all the Phase Two films.
  • However, that doesn’t mean they’ll be interfering to make them all fit. He talks about each film leading up to The Avengers 2 needing their own identity, being able to stand as their own franchises, their own type of fun.
  • That way The Avengers can offer its own kind of excitement for when all the heroes gather.
  • Viewers won’t need to have watched all the solo films to understand and get into The Avengers 2. Like the films leading up to it, it will stand on its own.
  • Whedon talks about Hulk’s combat style not following any uniform martial arts techniques, instead more of a violent, emotional rage. He also talks about framing shots to emphasize the anger on Hulk and actor Mark Ruffalo’s face.
  • Whedon reiterates how Wasp was almost a character to be included but was cut.
  • For each film, Whedon believes each character should be treated as if it’s the only chance to use that character.

If Whedon could pick any additional character to introduce in The Avengers 2, who should he pick?

Iron Man 3 releases May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014 and The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015.

Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Source: Gizmodo Japan (via CBM), Kotaku Japan