In recent weeks, movie sites have been digging up some alleged scoops about the various comic book movie blockbusters that are coming at us in the next few years. We recently reported some juicy rumors about the villains that will be featured in both The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises and to add to that list, today we’ll talk the latest rumors regarding the villains that The Avengers will battle.

We’ve also gotten word on when we’ll likely see the first trailer for The Avengers, so be sure to check that out as well.

First up, our buddies over Latino Review continue their trend of breaking movie news/rumors, claiming that one of their inside sources close to the Marvel camp has discovered who the villains in Marvel’s blockbuster superhero team-up film are going to be.

At this point I want to be clear that while these are currently RUMORS, they could very well turn out to be POTENTIAL SPOILERS, so read at your own risk:

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According to Latino Review, Thor’s villainous brother Loki (played by Tom Hiddleston) will be the architect of the plot against Earth and The Avengers, and he will use the cosmic cube(s) – mystical artifacts introduced in Captain America: The First Avenger and (supposedly) Thor – to call none other than the shape-shifting Skrulls to invade Earth!

This scenario makes a certain amount of sense, logically speaking, since The Skrulls being The Avengers villains has been a rumor floating around for years now – as has Loki’ s involvement (indicated by Tom Hiddleston’s multi-picture deal with Marvel, which seemed to go beyond the needs of just the Thor franchise). Employing the Cosmic Cube(s) as a plot device also ties Thor and Captain America together with The Avengers pretty nicely, since (as indicated in the pic below) we know that both The Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) and Loki encounter the mystical artifacts in their respective lead-in films.

Just dial 1-800-SKRULL

Treacherous gods and alien armadas are certainly a combined threat worthy of a super-team like The Avengers; The Skrulls and Loki are an especially juicy combination, as they both employ tactics of deception and subterfuge that would make for a thrilling plot, full of twists and turns as well as some pretty epic action. The one question people have is where The Hulk (also rumored as a villain in the film) fits into this scenario: Well, capturing The Hulk would be a great opening sequence for The Avengers, before turning attention to this Loki/Skrull battle, which would ultimately allow The Hulk to prove himself a hero like his teammates when he defends Earth.

This particular approach also works well in that it gives each respective member of The Avengers something to do, and highlights their backgrounds, powers and strengths. A quick breakdown:

  • Nick Fury and his S.H.I.E.L.D. agents – When you’ve got shape-shifters infiltrating your ranks, you need the best espionage force in the world to uncover the enemy.
  • Captain America – The guy who was a leading battle strategist and fighter in WWII gets a whole new war to fight.
  • Iron Man – As seen in Marvel’s “Secret Invasion” crossover event, the Skrulls do battle on the technological front by sending viruses out to cripple Earth’s technological resources. Who better to tackle that problem than Tony Stark?
  • Thor – Aside from taking on entire armies of foes (as he is wont to do), who else has the knowledge of Asgard necessary to battle and thwart Loki?
  • Hawkeye – Plenty of targets to sling arrows at when you’ve got a whole army at your door – Lord of the Rings eat your heart out!
  • The Hulk – Aside from seeing the big guy stomp entire Skrull battalions like they were ants, could you imagine how awesome it would be to see him pick up a Skrull mothership or doomsday weapon and hurl it into space???

Like I said, TONS of potential here. Let’s just hope the rumor turns out to be true, because it’s probably the best scenario for The Avengers that I’ve heard yet.

The Avengers Trailer

AICN reports that Marvel has shot specific footage for The Avengers teaser trailer, and that Loki is indeed included in that footage (don’t you just love it when the Blogosphere works together?). Speculation is that Marvel will attach the teaser trailer to either Thor or Captain America (likely both), meaning that you might be getting your first glimpse of The Avengers in just a few short months, come May and/or July.

Thor thunders into theaters on May 6, 2011.

Captain America invades theaters on July 22, 2011.

The Avengers deploy in theaters on May 4, 2012.

Source: Latino Review, AICN