Early last month, rumors started to fly around regarding the future of The Incredible Hulk in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Latino Review reported that ‘The Avengers 2’ would lead to a solo film for Bruce Banner’s Jade Giant featuring the ‘Planet Hulk’ storyline, which would ultimately lead to ‘World War Hulk’ in ‘The Avengers 3’. Well, Joss Whedon, the writer and director of ‘The Avengers 2’ and general overlord of the creative side of Marvel Studios, has recently debunked those reports.
In an interview with IGN promoting his upcoming film ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, we received verbal confirmation that ‘Planet Hulk’ isn’t actually happening. In the video below, he keeps things short, sweet, and to the point, despite the fact that he’s not supposed to talk about this stuff:
Back at the Glasgow Film Festival last week, Whedon also spoke on the challenges of a solo Hulk movie:
“Yes. But it would be very, very hard. Hulk is a tricky son of a bitch. He’s the Claudio of superheroes. Because the problem is it’s a very popular character, but it’s not a superhero. Half of it’s a superhero, half of it’s a werewolf. And you can’t structure it like a superhero movie, you can’t light it like a superhero movie. How do you develop that? It would be extremely difficult. The one thing you would have in your favor would be Mark Ruffalo. But right now I don’t know if they have plans to do that or not, because he works so well as part of a greater whole, but by himself, it’s tough. I don’t envy the guys who went before.” – Screenrant
By the sounds of it, he’s certainly done a good bit of thinking about this. I mean, he should. After all, it’s his job as the architect of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Regardless, I could see why Whedon would call the idea “nonsense” and why they wouldn’t take the ‘World War Hulk’ route in the first place. That story largely revolves around the Hulk himself and not Banner. Ruffalo, who was lauded for his performance in ‘The Avengers’ as the best version of the character in years, would barely be seen in that storyline. Why have the best Hulk/Banner actor in years locked into a multi-appearance contract if you’re not going to use him? There are plenty of other Hulk stories to utilize in the next Hulk solo film if and when it happens. Until then, the next time we’ll probably see the big guy in action is in the follow-up to Whedon’s first Marvel movie, which has the distinction of being the third highest grossing film of all time.
Are you disappointed that live-action ‘Planet Hulk’ and ‘World War Hulk’ movies probably aren’t happening? What storylines do you think should be adapted for the screen in a solo Hulk movie? And what role do you think Bruce Banner will play in Phase Two until he steps back into the spotlight in ‘The Avengers 2’? Share your thoughts in the comments below!