Remember in “The Incredible Hulk” when Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark told the general about a certain team he was involved with? Well it looks like Edward Norton’s Hulk won’t be a part of that team. While The Hulk will still appear in the upcoming “The Avengers,” Marvel has announced that Norton will not be reprising the role.
According to Marvel’s official statement, “Our decision [to recast the role] is definitely not one based on monetary factors, but instead rooted in the need for an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members.” This rather blunt comment hints at rumors that Norton was difficult to work with during development and filming of “The Incredible Hulk.”
Norton’s agent hit back at the studio, saying “This offensive statement from Kevin Feige at Marvel is a purposefully misleading, inappropriate attempt to paint our client in a negative light.”
Norton himself even weighed in, and especially given that he was dropped from a movie that is destined to be huge, he kept his response classy. On his Facebook page, Norton thanked his fans for their support and said, “I sincerely hoped it could happen be great for everyone, but it hasn’t turned out as we all hoped. I know this is disappointing to many people and that makes me sad. But I am very sincerely grateful to Marvel for extending the offer and even more so for giving me the chance to be a part of the Hulk’s long and excellent history.”
Rumors began circulating earlier this week that Joaquin Phoenix would take over the role. But Wednesday, Deadline reported that Marvel has made an offer to Mark Ruffalo.
Personally, I’m torn on this one. Ruffalo is one of my favorite actors and I have no doubt that he could do amazing things with the role. It would be interesting to see him step into such a big budget movie given that he tends to prefer indie work. But I would love to have seen “The Avengers” with all of the original actors, to have had that kind of continuity among so many movies set in the same universe. It doesn’t sound like there is any hope that Marvel will change its mind and bring back Norton, so I think Ruffalo could be a great addition to the ensemble.
What do you guys think? Do you wish Norton were returning for “The Avengers,” or are you excited about seeing a new Hulk? Sound off in the comments section.
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