‘The Avengers’ Originally Had a Second, More Physical Villain

Published 2 years ago by

Tom Hiddleston Loki Costume Chest Shoulder The Avengers Originally Had a Second, More Physical Villain

In Joss Whedon’s The Avengers, the top grossing film of 2012, superheroes introduced over four years of Marvel Studios films came together for a common goal when the world needed them most. Loki, Thor’s evil stepbrother from Asgard, came to Earth and brought with him an army of alien soldiers with the help of Thanos, and by doing so, rallied together Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and Hulk, along with the secretive S.H.I.E.L.D. organization and its top agents.

Loki however, wasn’t originally intended to be the only villain wreaking havoc against Earth’s Mightiest.

Marvel Studios is well-known for having strict creative control over each of their films – much to the chagrin of some of their directors – and it’s because of that long-term vision they were able to craft an inter-connected universe that paved the path for The Avengers and all of its success. When it came to their flagship film, there was only one main point of contention between the studio and writer/director Joss Whedon, and it was over a second main villain, one that could engage in fisticuffs with The Avengers.

The Avengers Movie 1 Team Pose 570x332 The Avengers Originally Had a Second, More Physical Villain

Cinema Blend attended Director’s Guild of America screening of The Avengers yesterday Joss Whedon was in attendance and in a following Q&A session, revealed the following about the villains of The Avengers and how Loki became the solo adversary.

“I definitely felt like I have Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, I have four of the biggest, baddest… just the toughest guys out there – and I have one effete British character actor… The ace in the hole is Tom Hiddleston, because he’s so compelling and commanding and gracious about it that it became, ‘Oh it’s about how he gets in their heads – it’s going to be fine. But it took me a long time to accept that because they need someone to hit!”

Whedon chose the Chitauri, and he chose to have Thanos appear in the post-credits sequence, but this second villain he would not reveal, as he says that character could show up in the films at a later point in time. From Whedon’s words, it seems obvious that the mystery character is physically intimidating, and one that has yet to be announced for the in-production films Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World, so who could it be and could that villain show up in The Avengers 2 working for Thanos?

Kang? Korvac? Ultron? Who do you think Whedon wanted to see fight The Avengers in their first movie?

Note: Whedon also talked about early drafts of the script including Wasp in a major role when they were unsure of Scarlett Johansson’s availability, but that was previously revealed in the summer and we talked about it then. Count on her introduction in Phase Two, potentially in Iron Man 3.

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, 2014The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015 and Ant-Man on November 6, 2015.


Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Source: Cinema Blend

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  1. Professor chaos!

  2. Actually it was me…but no worries,I still have plans to rule the worlds..har har har !

    • Auto Correct FTW

    • You have 1 day left.

      • The end of the world is near. I’ll die as a virgin, Oh god why….

        • Quick! “Romance” yourself! (Whew, saved!).

  3. It would be cool if it’s ultron,after all they are going 2 introduce ant-man which I assume will be Hank Pym who created ultron.but if it’s someone working for Thanos, perhaps it is kang though I doubt that because I would think kang would have his own agenda for world conquest. Whedon no doubt is going 2 throw a huge surprise for avengers 2 especially competing with the justice league movie.

  4. Wow, where did that picture of the Avengers looking all badass come from? I like it :)

    • I know right?! Never seen that wallpaper before.

      • I grabbed it a while back on one of those “Best HD Wallpaper” apps from the android market. There are a lot of comic book wallpapers. Check it out!

        • Thanks! Will do.

    • second that… I thought I already have all their pics, but this one is a total badass that I would die to have it hang on my walls. Too bad the resolution is a bit small…

      • It looks exactly like the X-Men version except better since that group is wearing those god awful black outfits.

  5. I’m thinking it could have been the Abomination.
    It would have been easy enough for him to be brought in (Loki finds out about his location and breaks him out of jail/containment).

    Anyway, I think things worked out pretty well lol.
    If I had to pick one thing they should have changed, it would be the Chitauri all falling to the ground in the end (they could have added an extra 2 minute scene/montage showing the military arriving for support and the Avengers taking out the last of the aliens).

    • Yeap, that was an incredibly weak and contrived plot point.

      But hey, Hulk punched a space whale.

      • For having the smallest role out of the rest of the Avengers, I feel he stole the show.

        • Wham bam bam! Wham bam!

        • Absolutely!

          (Puny god) :-P

      • Hahaha! Yup, Hulk punching the space whale was well worth the price of admission! :D

        • What do you expect? Bruce Banner was the only character in that entire movie that was developed by the Director. For all intent and purposes, Iron Man belonged to John Favreau, Thor to Kenneth Branagh etc.

          Clearly, Hulk was going to get the most from the director who developed him.

          • That’s exactly why I feel that Whedon gets way too much credit from his loverboys. He only created one character. The rest already knew what they were doing. Throw them a script and point a camera. No skill needed.

            • No skill needed ? The story tied all of the previous films together. Shield developing the Hydra type weapons from Cap in response to the events of Thor while using the ruse of clean energy for all to draw in Iron Man and the cube giving off a gamma trail to bring in Banner and finally Whedon’s signature mess with the heroes heads style villain in Loki. He wasn’t a Lone Ranger in this project by any means but his fingerprints are all over it !

            • Whedon gets credit for “OVERSEEING” the entire series’ progression. If the early films had contradicted one another then his movie would have suffered the most. “He” made sure that didn’t happen & that’s why “He” gets most not all the credit. I just thought I had to clearify that with you.

            • Its the way he may Avenger a working sequel for all 3 of the other characters.

            • “He only created one character”
              Well technically, he didn’t create any of the characters…

              But I think you’re grossly underestimating what Whedon actually did – not only with the characters (Hulk, Black Widow and Loki were all very much “Whedonized” and he certainly didn’t do nothing with Iron Man, Cap, Thor, Hawkeye. Fury, Hill and Coulson either), but also with making a near impossible task, possible:

              Bringing all these heroes together in one movie (most thought that that alone wasn’t going to work) with enough exposition and screen-time for each, with lost of action and eye candy, well written dialog woven in and STILL managing to tell a story as well (however simple that story might have been) is quite a feat in my humble opinion.

              Like CinemaViper said, he wasn’t the one and only person responsible, but there was certainly skill needed to do what he did.

              • And that’s why DC wants to copy their success. To try & steal their thunder away from them using Marvels’ own formula. Jealousy is such a terrible thing to have these days.

                • True, but if they can do it in a different yet good way, it would still be something worth seeing. While I’m personally more of a Marvel fan than a DC fan, I wouldn’t mind seeing a Justice League movie if it can be made to work.

    • Yeh – Abomination would have been great & worth bringing back from one of the 1st Marvel movie’s that got the ball rolling with Tony Stark walking in @ the end – Still one of my fave movie moments ever !

    • joss talks about that in the commentary. if you’ve not listened to that yet, i recommend it.

  6. glad they settled on the script they did. we’ve all seen how bad things can be when too many foes are injected into a script

  7. Too bad Joss didn’t get enough freedom to add another villain. It would have been better when Loki had an ally and they both become one huge threat. :-(

  8. Draxx. It would make sense.

    • My thoughts exactly. Physical, cosmic (fits in with thanos)but maybe too similar in appearance to the Skrulls whom I assume will get some screen time eventually. But Vision also would’ve made sense and he’d be ready to go in the team after being introduced as a villain.

  9. Well guys now that I think about it I’m pretty sure he was talking about Abomination aka Emil Blonksy from the Incredible Hulk. There’s no better physical villain than him! I’d been hoping to see him return for some time. I just hope they use him in Avengers 2 along with a MCU version of the Masters of Evil!
    2.Malekith the Accursed/Surtur???
    3.Baron Zemo/Crossbones???
    4.The Leader
    5.The Mandarin
    6. Ultron??
    This is all speculation but I’d ove to see this ”ULTIMATE” version of the Masters!!!

    • Why not have M.O.D.O.K? Taskmaster is another choice, or maybe the Skrull Empire?

  10. Why bother with another ‘villian’ when you’ve got a brain-washed Hawkeye who can single-handedly take out the Shield Heli-carrier, induce a Hulk transformation in the process, and free Loki from a (not so) unbreakable prison?? (not to mention break into a top secret lab and steal the one thing needed to stabilize the tesseract weapon thingy)

    Surprising how easily he got his ass handed to him by Black Widow, but I’m sure that wasn’t a plot hole or anything (chirping crickets).


    • Haha, I couldn’t have said it any better myself… To each his own I guess. Some people seem to enjoy it when movies are “dumbed-down” for them.

      • Oh Boy!! Here we go again with the Avengers bashing. Don’t make the moderator close this section too. In case you didn’t notice before he already did it to the last article page that started an Avengers vs. Dark Knight debate.

    • loki got himself out of the trap, and BW handed him his @$$ because she is a bad@$$. the thing he stole was from a museum, not a lab. no one there but some rent-a cops. guess it wasn’t dumbed down enough for some people.


    • HE is ONLY seeing over the Phase 2 projects, HE HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH phase 1 EXCEPT for directing and writing the Avengers! He only signed on for this overseeing project once Marvel knew it had struck gold with him and the avengers

      • @Slappy. Sorry buddy but you’re only half right on this one. Although Joss wasn’t crowned the official “Oversee-er” of the project by MARVEL it still doesn’t mean he didn’t make sure all the right pieces had fit together before he wrote his script. Remember, if any of those solo films had any contradictions with eachother then his film would have had major issues as well.

    • I like Hawkeye but can’t stand Jeremy Renner. This guy does not cut it as an actor for me let alone an Avenger! He is the only miscast actor of the Avengers.

  12. After watching The Avengers:Earth’s Mightiest Heroes,I have to say that Kang would be pretty awesome if they did him the same way.Funny thing is that I never liked Kang until the cartoon.

  13. At least the Hulk got physical with Loki, and it was almost as good as him punching the space whale

    • It was definitely the funniest part of the movie for me. I laughed soo much I didn’t catch the “Puny god” remark from Hulk the first time.

      Also, I have not seen any movie as much as I have seen Avengers; The Ten Commandments was the film I saw the most but now it’s Avengers.

      • I didn’t catch it the first time either, it wasn’t until the 3rd viewing that I could control my laughter enough to hear it. I don’t even know what movie would hold my most viewed before the Avengers. It would probably be a tie between Blade and the Simpsons movie. As you can tell I’m not very deep

  14. It would likely be another Asgardian baddie, some tough guy who takes orders from Loki.

    I say the Scourge, The Executioner.

  15. It’s a known fact that Joss re-wrote the Captain America script, and that his intent was to make Cap the “main character” of The Avengers, directly continuing his arc from his solo film. (check out the deleted scenes).

    • How come IMDB only lists Markus and McDeely as writers in Caotain America? I think Whedon only wrote and directed the end scene with the cube in CA:TFA

    • he didn’t re-write the script, only did some of the editing. thats what i had read on some article before

  16. hmmm could have been just about anything. hmmm speaking of villians, say Rob Keyes, I have been curious Do you think you could do a lineup of possible villians for an Antman movie? I know he only had a dozen or so original ones from his stint in tales to astonish(though he has proably picked up some new ones through the years), you could do it with both the original and current name and look of each villian, like the blacknight or The human top(now known as whirlwind), that would be something nice to help hold us over, and cure some curiousity.

    also, anyone else thinking beta ray bill might show up in Thor 2? just a thought, and he would be a fun addition to the movie hero roster

    • No wait, I just had a crazy thought, what if it was going to be Baron Zemo!?

  17. I could be in it.

  18. Graviton would have / can be a great one to use. If written as powerful as he really is he can easily take on all the Avengers & then some. I know some story lines he has taken down Namor, Hulk & Thor at the same time. He also has taken on the Fantastic Four and X-Men at the same time too.

  19. Marvel should not fall into the trap of having to many villains.

  20. I would think at first that the additional villain would have been Red Skull (remember THOSE rumors anyone?) or the Leader. But I wonder if Arnim Zola was also a possibility. But if we focus closer to the Cosmic Cube…?

    The Adaptoid

  21. I just hope that Whedon doesn’t lose sight of what is important in regards to Thanos…He HAS to lay down at least 1 show stopping Pimp smack! he’s almost as well known for that as he is for the Infinity Gauntlet. Hell, he even kills Captain America with it in the Infinity Gauntlet saga. And He pimp smacks Hulk and Drax at the same time in the last issue…

    Don’t forget THAT, Whedon.

  22. if they introduced ultron into the mix of the villians, he would pose as a very strong physical strain on the avengers while allowing the team to gain one of their members possibly at the end. this also leads into the ant man movie…. anyone agree??

    • that gain being vision to clear things up

    • But Ultron never really did naything with Thanos in the comic though. I do think that he def could be the main villian in a another movie though. He’d be a really good choice, actually

      • possibly ant man?

  23. Hmm. The trouble with villains like Ultron is that they require too much setup to be used as a secondary villain. He’s also of such stature that he’d be better used as a primary villain in a later movie.

    I think it’s probably best they left out the secondary physical villain. Hulk effectively ended up filling that role anyway.

    If you tried to fit another villain into that movie there’s a real danger they’d end up like Bane in Batman and Robin – a pointless parody of the character.

    • The point i was making was that in the next Avengers movie there will be much time to fill. The first movie had the much loved heroes battling it out against one another while loki was a suitable and the only necessary villain. however the second movie will not have this premise. The team will already be familiar with one another and friendly so what to do with that time?? And if Thanos will be in the Guardians of the Galaxy then how will he also be the main/only villian of a second movie…. i demand answers xD

  24. There is no lack of super villains they could have thrown at the Avengers, but then again, not all of them are “Avenger” villains.
    In any case, my personal choice would have been the Submariner. I know, I know, he’s not technically a villain, but he has been an adversary of practically every other Marvel hero, even Daredevil. Plus, he has the unique feature of having been involved in two main parts of the Avengers, 1. he was (in the comics, at least), responsible for the Avengers discovering the frozen Captain America, and 2. he once battled the Avengers while in possession of the Cosmic Cube, which is kind of the pattern for the “Teseract”. (The Cosmic cube was an ‘invention’ of A.I M., which keeps getting lost and found, is all powerful to the possessor etc.. Sound familiar?)
    Anyway, Loki could have used Namor’s natural hatred of humanity as a goad for him to attack the Avengers. He has Thor’s strength and invulnerability, he can fly, he can breathe underwater, and he has an axe to grind. Then, in the end, when he realized the full implications of Loki’s plans, he would have helped defeat the Chitauri, and escaped back to the sea. Being, 3. a reason to keep the Avengers together as a team, cause, you know, he might come back. Just a thought. Then again, who would you ever get to play him?

  25. I think Ultron will be the villain in Avengers 3. Being Ant-Man is the 1st. phase 3 movie, and you need Ant-Man to have Ultron.

  26. Doom!

  27. I think the whole idea of needing a second “more physical” villain in lame. Whedon judged Tom Hiddleston and applied limitations to him before giving him a chance to even demonstrate what he really could do.
    First of all, saying he has all these big bad superheroes and for a villain “one effete British character actor” is just condescending and insulting to Hiddleston. Clearly he knew nothing about him or he’d have known that the guy gained over 20 pounds of pure muscle in six weeks for Thor when he originally auditioned because he was going for the role of Thor and slimmed back down because that was what the director wanted when he cast him as Loki instead. Or that he studied martial arts, including Capoeira and Wushu, to prepare for the fights with Chris Helmsworth, where he told him to just go ahead and actually punch him for the sake of realism.

    If Whedon wanted him to be bigger & more physical he easily could have been. Personally I thought the fights with him were great. He and Chris both modeled their fighting styles to what they thought suited their characters: Chris going with a Mike Tyson, power-centric, straightforward attack while Tom’s was more fluid, acrobatic, and centered on speed and agility. I mean, obviously he’s going to get pounded into the ground by the Hulk; even Thor was bleeding from their scuffle & he was using Yum-yum.

    But that doesn’t make him effete! Whedon makes it sound like he has to settle on Tom/Loki and on focusing on the intellectual aspect of what makes him a threat.

    Besides, I was more interested in the hero-vs-hero match-ups throughout the movie anyway :) I thought they had every possible skirmish a fan could want while still having a plot and not turning into a Michael Bay film!I mean who hasn’t wanted to see who would win in a fight between the Hulk and Thor on the silver screen? Or see Thor taking on Iron Man? Or wondered what happens when a magic god-hammer hits an impenetrable shield??

    Then of course there’s the space whale (why are we calling it that exactly?) and one of my favorite parts: where Thor and the Hulk take one down together and share a moment of mutual triumph…until Hulk just punches Thor across the room out of nowhere for no reason xD

    Another villain would’ve been too much.

    Loki was great and pointed out that no matter how physically strong you are, no matter how powerful you may be, everyone has a weakness that can be exploited- that physical strength can do jack squat against someone who can get inside your head and manipulate you. That’s a kind of evil that is far more dangerous and more frightening than someone with brute strength alone.

    (Though Black Widow might not agree since she seemed pretty freaked after nearly getting pimp-slapped to death by the Hulk, but then handled Loki’s attempt to mess with her without any problem despite the fact that he called her the C-word :P)

    • I think you may have misunderstood the whole “effete British actor” thing. Whedon said he sort of felt like that going in, but…(quoting Whedon himself)
      …”The ace in the hole is Tom Hiddleston, because he’s so compelling and commanding and gracious about it that it became, ‘Oh it’s about how he gets in their heads – it’s going to be fine.”

      Whedon certainly recognizes Hiddleston’s ability to be the villain he needed to be. Please let’s not start any controversy where none was intended.

      • He tried to buy it back, but it absolutely was an insulting thing to say and he really shouldn’t have said it. He’s essentially calling Hiddleston a pretentious wimp (which is pretty ironic coming from him) and goes on to impugn his command of the screen in the same breath by using ‘character actor’ as a pejorative. If a film critic had said the same thing, it’d be a slightly unfair witticism (yeah, he went to Cambridge and is very cultured, but it’s not affected and he’s also a very big man with a gift for projecting regality and dominance), but saying it about someone you know personally is completely over the asshole line.

        I get the impression from Joss that he tries too hard to be clever all the time and comes off as much more of a dick than he realises.

        • Llama: Thank you!

          Plus if that was the extent of what was said it would’ve been extremely rude and disrespectful, but not only do I understand “the whole effete British actor thing,” I also know what an ellipses in the middle of a quote indicates; that the two selected pieces were not said consecutively, but had dialog between them.

          He didn’t go right into how it ended up being fine because of how great Tom was. In fact there was quite a bit that was left out that Whedon said about wanting a second villain and Tom Hiddleston, nearly all of it exceedingly insulting.

          For instance he started off by explaining how very hard he fought to have that second villain, and how “he thinks what it was” was that the producers “didn’t want to introduce anymore mythology.” He goes on to say that “it was VERY very difficult for me to make that work.” For HIM to make that work. Right.

          That’s when he said that bit about Tom Hiddleston being the ace in the hole, though simply reading his comment about how it became about getting into their heads and how it’ll be fine is lacking tone of voice, which changes things. In writing it looks like he’s recognizing Loki’s ability to be a formidable villain by taking a different approach to destroying the good guys, but he says it in such a blase, nearly sarcastic way- as though this is what other people told him and he thought it was ridiculous. (Which apparently he did from what he says in this Q&A and how supremely difficult it was for him & how inordinately long it took to accept.)

          I’m not creating controversy where there isn’t any.

          I honestly think that disrespecting a talented colleague who worked his butt off and did a superlative job helping you create a massively successful film is disgusting and unacceptable. In the same interview he talks down to the entire cast, comparing them to unruly kindergartners every time they were all in a scene together & claiming that he had to constantly remind them that they had work to do! It bothers me so much to hear him sound like such a snob because I’m a Whedon fan & I was truly excited to hear that he was going to be directing it. I was there when he made the announcement & wrote an article about it for fraks sake!

          Besides, he already has plenty of controversy surrounding him over things he’s said/done related to this movie with no one to blame but himself; it’s not like he’s a stranger to it.

          And I AM sticking to the topic.

          Three people are now part of this conversation; it’s officially a topic for discussion. It may not be the main topic, but it’s an offshoot directly related to information given in the article & is equally valid. We’re keeping it civil & anyone who doesn’t care about it can just ignore us.

  28. I actually cannot believe that no-one has suggested Crusher Creel, The Absorbing Man. He was the villain that brought the Avengers together and was given his powers by Loki. He is pretty much the epitome of strong+dumb.

    This is a no-brainer, guys.

  29. Guys, stick to topic! I agree on that it cud have been abomination.. but lets hav a look at potential villains..
    Theres abomination,
    And the leader, remember he was in the incredible hulk for like two seconds after hulk blood went into his head wound.
    The enchantress, or any of that company likethe executioner
    Maybe even absorbing man! Idk but to me the abomination makes the most sense.. and i also wish to see beta ray bill, and surtur.. hopefully ultron as well that would be epic.