There are less than two months until Marvel Studios releases The Avengers into theaters and at this point, there's not too much more the studio and director Joss Whedon are willing to show in the marketing. We had The Avengers Super Bowl spot which won the attention from fans among all of the movie-related commercials during the big game, the latest trailer which debuted in 3D this weekend on prints of John Carter in theaters and an endless amount of fan-made trailers, including our own Avengers mashup.
While there's still uncertainty surrounding the villainous army featured in the film, even after a series of trailers, images of tie-in merchandise and TV commercials, we now at least have an idea of how long the film will be.
Collider had a chance to speak with Whedon at SXSW for The Cabin in the Woods premiere and like most interviews with the director of The Avengers, questions didn't always stay on topic and Whedon shared some info on how long we can expect to sit in theaters for Marvel's epic team-up flick.
"My first cut was three hours long and it’s now down to 2 hours and 15 minutes, and I’m extremely proud of that. I had always intended to go over two, under two and a half. There was no way a movie with this many great actors and this much epic scope was gonna clock in under two and not feel a little anemic, somebody wasn’t gonna get their moment if that happened. But at the same time, I get very angry that romantic comedies run over two hours long, it’s like ‘Guys, that’s not okay.’ More isn’t more. I don’t want anything in the movie that shouldn’t be."
For comparison, Whedon says The Avengers is currently 135 minutes, a little longer than previous Marvel Studios films:
- Iron Man: 126 minutes
- The Incredible Hulk: 112 minutes
- Iron Man 2: 124 minutes
- Thor: 114 minutes
- Captain America: The first Avenger: 124 minutes
So, there's an extra 10 minutes there to re-intro the characters. As for the 45 minutes cut so far, Whedon explains it's content that he loves, stuff that would be great on TV where there's time for content to doesn't necessarily move the plot forward. So, will it show up on the home video releases?
"No [there won’t be a director’s cut on the DVD]. I… believe very strongly in putting the director’s cut into the theaters. I believe that the director’s cut is the best movie for the studio and the best version of the movie for the audience. I’ve never really been in a situation where I had to pull the beating heart out of something that I did. I think people get to see a lot of extraordinary extras because I did shoot a bunch of stuff that I love, but the movie is the movie I want it to be."
I would disagree with the best film for studio being synonymous with best film for the audience, but we can agree three hours is too long. When it comes to The Avengers it's safe to say fans would love to see all of the movie whether it be through an extended edition of the complete film or through deleted scenes. Don't be surprised to see re-releases of the Blu-rays which include it at some point in the future.
The Avengers stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Clark Gregg, Tom Hiddleston and Stellan Skarsgard. It is of course written and directed by Joss Whedon, opening in theaters on May 4, 2012.
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