Joss Whedon’s The Avengers is a "first" for Marvel movies in more than one way. For example, it’s the first major motion picture to feature so many significant superheroes. It’s also Marvel's longest film, clocking in at two hours and fifteen minutes.
But that doesn’t mean it won’t include all the hallmarks of the previous Marvel superhero films, like the obligatory Stan Lee cameo and another (scene stealing?) turn by Clark Gregg as fan-favorite Agent Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Recently, Stan Lee discussed his forthcoming cameos in The Avengers, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Iron Man 3, while Clark Gregg talked about his reaction to seeing The Avengers for the very first time.
Here's Stan Lee talking about his upcoming cameos, courtesy of Collider:
"’The Avengers’ cameo that you will see, when that movie opens up, is possibly one of my best. And you know how good mine have been, but [‘The Avengers] cameo] is so funny. I can’t tell you what it is because they’d kill me, but it’s funny. So is the ‘[Amazing] Spider-Man’ one, by the way. They’re deciding to make my cameos a little funnier. They know that’s what brings the audiences in, of course, so they’ve gotta play them up."
In regards to a cameo in Iron Man 3, Lee said:
"I haven’t done that cameo yet. It’s almost scary because they just give me a date. They’ll say, 'Stan, come over next Thursday for your cameo,' but they don’t tell me what it is. So, I show up and they say, 'Go to wardrobe.' In wardrobe, they say, 'We want to get you a white shirt and a green sweater and a black zippered jacket,' and I’ll say, 'Don’t bother, I’m wearing one.' And then, they say, 'But, you can’t wear yours!,' and they look around and get me the exact same thing, but I’m not allowed to wear my own. And I still don’t know what my role will be. I go on the set and one minute before we’re gonna shoot, the director says, 'Okay, Stan, this is what I want you to do.' So, I don’t know what is expected of me, until I get there, but of course, I do it magnificently."
Honestly – and I’m probably in the minority here – but I’ve gotten to the point where I find these Stan Lee cameos to be more trouble than they’re worth. Sure, it was vaguely funny at first, but now every time he shows up, I’m just ripped straight out of the film. How many ways can one man make a cameo in these superhero films?
Obviously, the cameos aren’t intrusive or annoying enough to irrevocably alter the quality of the films, but the point still stands.
Meanwhile, actor Clark Gregg – who has co-starred in Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor, and the upcoming Ultimate Spider-Man TV – has seen The Avengers. He shared his impressions of the film with Collider, saying:
"I'm very excited for people to see this movie. I think the fans, like me, will be as excited as I was, when I saw it. From the minute I read Joss Whedon’s script, I thought, 'Oh, man, this is going to be fun to do!' The hardest thing to get right is to figure out how to bring all those characters together, and to fulfill the promise of The Avengers. They really set a very high bar for themselves because you’ve been setting this coalition up, for these five movies, and they better deliver. And in my opinion, they thoroughly deliver."
It goes without saying that Gregg is a paid representative of Marvel and The Avengers, so the film could be terrible and he’s still not likely to badmouth it. Having said that, it’s worth noting how obviously enthusiastic the guy is with regard to the material. This man seems to genuinely care about these properties, about his role as Agent Coulson, and about the effect all of it has had on the fans -- both children and adults alike -- and his career.
What're your thoughts on Stan Lee's cameos, Screen Ranters? About Clark Gregg's impressions of The Avengers? Let us know in the comments.
The Avengers hits theaters May 4th, 2012.
Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.