On Friday, Marvel Studios honcho Kevin Feige held a webchat through the LA Times Hero Complex blog, in which he beat the promotional drum for next summer’s Thor (“Thor is our first step into [the cosmic Marvel Universe] and from there, anything’s possible”) and Captain America: The First Avenger (“an epic, period adventure”) releases as well as answered numerous questions about what Marvel has in store for their super-hero team-up film The Avengers in 2012 and beyond.
Feige reconfirmed some of the superhero films that will be making their way to cinemas in the next couple of years. In response to a FilmBuffRich (Now who could that be?) who asked, “After Avengers we know you’re looking at Iron Man 3, The Runaways and possibly Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man. Anything else you care to share?” Feige responded, “ Those 4 films are gonna take up the next three years of my life! But don’t worry, we’re always working on more.” As to what those more may be, Feige hinted that Marvel Comics characters the likes of Dr. Strange, Iron Fist, Black Panther, Luke Cage, Moonknight, Power Pack and the Punisher were in various stages of development over the course of the hour.
Since the chat jumped back and forth through a number of topics, we’ve organized all his responses below by category.
- Natalie [Portman] was always our first and only choice for Jane.
- Natalie and Chris [Hemsworth] have amazing chemistry in the film. After an early cut, [Marvel Comics writer Brian] Bendis told me it was the best romantic chemistry in a Marvel movie.
- People looking for a reference to Don Blake in the Thor film will find one.
- (On the abandonment of the Thor comic’s faux-Shakespearean dialect) – As much as I love Stan the Man’s Shakespearean dialect, we felt it would be over-bearing. However, our director Kenneth Branagh has a great ear for the English language and I think you’ll find that the Asgardian speak is appropriately regal.
- You only see her briefly in the trailer, but Kat Dennings comes close to stealing the film.
- Idris rules as Heimdale. Come to think of it HE may come close to stealing the movie!
Captain America: The First Avenger
- (On star Chris Evans having previously played the Human Torch in Twentieth century Fox’s two Fantastic Four films being cast as Captain America) – We figured if Harrison Ford could be Indiana Jones and Han Solo, Chris Evans could play Torch and Cap.
- Working on the Cap trailer now. You should be seeing one in the new year.
- More Cap pics coming early next year.
- (Will one of those pictures be Hugo Weaving in his Red Skull makeup?) – You’ll be seeing it soon enough. And believe me, he looks amazing.
- While there’s no Invaders, there’s lots of Howling Commandos!
- (Though it looks like the Howling Commandos will not be lead by Sgt. Nick Fury) – We’re keeping Nick Fury as portrayed by the great Sam Jackson just in the modern era for now.
- [Captain America’s sidekick] Bucky plays an important part in the film. Sebastian Stan’s done a tremendous job playing him.
- (Responding to a fan’s concern that Chris Evans as Captain America may not have the same screen presence as Iron man’s Robert Downey Jr or Thor’s Hemsworth) – Evans owns the screen as Cap and is going to hold his own and then some.
- The best part about making an Iron Man movie is deciding which of his many armors to debut. Joss would kill me if I gave anything away, but I will say that the evolution you saw his armor take in IM2 will continue in The Avengers.
- (On the possibility of any other heroes or cameos we don’t know about yet in the film) – Maybe…
- On choosing Joss Whedon to direct – He doesn’t lose site of the characters no matter how big and crazy the spectacle gets.
- Edgar [Wright, writer and director for the project] was here a few days ago. He’s already working on the next draft.
- (We should see the movie) – sometime after The Avengers.
- A very talented writer is currently working on a draft
- (Will the script be based on Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction’s work on the series?) – The movie is definitely inspired by that great run.
- (On how far their films are planned out for) – We try to stay five years ahead of the game. But now that you bring it up, what would you like to see in 20 years?
- Love Power Pack, Maybe someday!
- I have not been shy about my love for Dr. Strange, Black Panther, and Luke Cage.
- (Another question about a possible Black Panther film brought this response) – Things are in the works.
- Punisher’s back in house, and various plans are in the works.
- (On the possibility of an R-Rated superhero film from Marvel) – We’re definitely open to it. Blade was a great franchise for us
- I love female heroes too and would love to bring many more to the big screen in the future.
- Moonknight’s a challenging, but extremely interesting character. We’ve been discussing various versions of it for years.
- Love Marvel Zombies, but don’t think a Zombie TV show would ever work… haha.
- (On Easter Eggs in upcoming films) – The Thor and Cap movies are really about our distinct origin stories for two of our most famous characters. As long as people are excited to find hidden secrets, we’ll continue to hide them.
- (Will Thor, Captain America and/or The Avengers have button scenes after the credits?) – Some of them will…
- The Incredible Hulk is MCU canon.
- Our primary job is doing justice to the title characters, but we do have someone who’s got a large chart that spans across his office wall tracking the continuity. It’s pretty cool. Maybe we’ll publish it one day.