Joss Whedon Talks AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON and Making “Everything a Robot Never Is”

by     Posted 242 days ago

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In the comics, the villain Ultron has lots and lots of powers, and I doubt all of them will be making it into Avengers: Age of Ultron.  But beyond his superpowers, there’s the question of his personality.  Writer-director Joss Whedon is clearly relishing the chance to bring this unique baddie to the screen, and he spoke with Empire about the experience.  “I’m having a blast with Ultron,” Whedon said. “He’s not a creature of logic – he’s a robot who’s genuinely disturbed. We’re finding out what makes him menacing and at the same time endearing and funny and strange and unexpected, and everything a robot never is.”  When Whedon lays out the character like this, it makes me even more excited that they got James Spader to do the voice.

Hit the jump for more on what Whedon had to say beyond talking about the Avengers 2 villain.  The film also stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and Thomas KretschmannAvengers: Age of Ultron opens May 1, 2015.

Whedon reiterated that bringing in new characters wasn’t just a matter of fan-service or a “bigger-is-better” mentality.  He explains to Empire:

“I fiercely dislike the idea of just throwing in more people for the sake of doing that,” he stressed. “But last time I had all of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes versus one British character actor, and I needed more conflict.”

True, but when the British character actor is Tom Hiddleston, that’s a pretty tough foe.  At that point, you really have no choice but to go with a superpowered, insane, killer robot.




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  • Daniel Ronczkowski

    Hopefully we see Loki pop up!

    • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

      Although, considering where Loki was at the end of Thor 2, why would he want to go to Earth? He got what he wanted.

    • Doug_101

      I’m actually hoping for the opposite. Love Hiddleston in the role, but they need to expand their villains roster. Will be great to see him in Thor 3, but for Avengers, let’s keep it varied. Ultron was a good move. Hoping to see Kang sometime too.

      • JBug

        Kang would be great, although I’m not sure how well that would play on a big screen because it diverts from any main story line (unless they could find a compelling way to connect it). I don’t know how, but I’d also like to see Gravitron.

      • Mearrrvel

        They did a version of a Gravitron origin story in an early episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. There’s yet to be any payoff to his introduction. The show has had many oft-remarked issues with a meandering procedural style and generic character archetypes, but there has been a definite improvement in quality since the release of The Winter Soldier, so hopefully if Gravitron does return in full force by that time the show will be prepared to do him justice. He was played by Ian Hart who certainly has the talent to transition the character to the films if they should decide to go that route, so that’s good news.

      • JBug

        I doubt anything will ever come from AOS. I hope they don’t lay waste to any other great characters.

        I don’t mind that AoS exists as long as it only serves to satisfy those who love Marvel and don’t care about quality. It’ll really bother me if it actually does something substantial because I really don’t have the time/patience to spend watching a lot of low quality TV for those sparse moments/plot lines. If it actually does do something substantial I don’t know that I’ll be able to hold back. I am, however, super pumped for the Netflix mini-series.

      • Mearrrvel

        I really have to agree, crossovers between AoS and the films only seem to work one way. The show is at its best when it ties in to the movies, but if they try to reference the show in the films it would likely just be dead weight for most viewers. For example, re-introducing Coulson into the movies would probably just be clunky. (That said, little details like recognizing Agent Sitwell in The Winter Soldier work well for me). I too am highly anticipating seeing what Netflix does.

      • Kaine Morrison

        Sitwell was in Thor first.

      • milo

        I thought one of the recent SHIELD episodes made reference to gravitron again, made it seem like it would probably be back, I assume before the end of the season based on the timing.

  • http://www.collider.com/ DNAsplitter

    I hope they will show us the final look to Ultron soon. I wonder if they’ll give us a teaser before GOTG? It would be smart as it would really draw a large crowd to theaters on opening weekend and help secure them from a financial stand point with box office as it’s Marvel’s riskest film yet. As of now I’m starting to think GOTG will wind up closer to Pacific Rim than Incredible Hulk in terms of box office returns.

    • Person

      GOTG will do fine in terms of business, there’s still at least one more major trailer coming and basically the entire promotional campaign. I just wouldn’t hold my breath for a look at Ultron; frankly I don’t see what connection he’d have to the Guardians as I think it’s been said they’re out in space doing their own thing for now, and will only hook up with the Avengers for the third movie.

      I have a feeling the tease at the end of GOTG will remind people of Thanos once again, but leave things pretty vague. Just enough to tell audiences “Hey, remember this guy?” and remind them that he’s still around and very much a threat, but nothing more than that. Phase 3 will build up the Thanos angle much more.

    • Person

      GOTG will do fine in terms of business, there’s still at least one more major trailer coming and basically the entire promotional campaign. I just wouldn’t hold my breath for a look at Ultron; frankly I don’t see what connection he’d have to the Guardians as I think it’s been said they’re out in space doing their own thing for now, and will only hook up with the Avengers for the third movie.

      I have a feeling the tease at the end of GOTG will remind people of Thanos once again, but leave things pretty vague. Just enough to tell audiences “Hey, remember this guy?” and remind them that he’s still around and very much a threat, but nothing more than that. Phase 3 will build up the Thanos angle much more.

      • cynic000

        There won’t be any need to remind people of Thanos in the stinger of GOTG because he’s in the movie itself. Feige told Empire that Thanos has been cast already but they aren’t going to reveal the actor yet. **SPOILERS** Also, in a Business Week profile of Feige the reporter saw a major character flying through space on a throne in a visit to the GOTG editing room. Feige was arguing with Gunn that the throne should use anti-gravity devices instead of rockets. Sounded just like Thanos to me, though he asked them not to name the character.

      • JBug

        I think that’s only in one scene (probably the end), and is not related to the plot other than his connections to the various characters.

        Maybe he’s giving orders the whole time, but I’d be surprised if he is anything close to the main villain of the movie.

      • JBug

        Does anybody have any issue with the direction they are taking Thanos and the infinity gems? I don’t mind that their origin/name is different than the comics, but their function seems incredibly vague compared to comics. They all just seemed to be forces of power than can take over the universe. What is the point of having six if each can accomplish this? Also, it’s not like Thanos is going to wear the tesseract and the dark thingy on a glove.

    • paul h

      Inc Hulk was up in the USA, +30m over Pac Rim but it got whooped WW, Pac Rim 411m, Inc Hulk 263m.

      Makes me curious as to what their internal targets are for GotG… given how Phase 2 has panned out so far anything under 500m ww would be below expectations?

    • paul h

      Inc Hulk was up in the USA, +30m over Pac Rim but it got whooped WW, Pac Rim 411m, Inc Hulk 263m.

      Makes me curious as to what their internal targets are for GotG… given how Phase 2 has panned out so far anything under 500m ww would be below expectations?

  • The Flobbit

    Loki > Ultron.

    • Ultron

      That’s blasphemous.

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        What does a robot know of blasphemy?

    • Ultron

      That’s blasphemous.

    • JBug

      Ultron > Loki in my book.

  • Royale With Cheese

    I wish they wouldn’t put in set photos in articles with interviews. Or at least give some indication in the title that set photos are included. Some of us may not want to see these.

    • joeybot

      A guy wearing his pajamas with some crappy robot armor on? Were you going to avoid trailers too?

      • Royale With Cheese

        Yes, I am, as I have been.

      • Person

        I also avoid most trailers these days like the plague. The last one I remember watching was the Godzilla teaser.

      • Royale With Cheese

        I couldn’t agree more with you. The last movie I watched trailers for was Man of Steel and I couldn’t be happier with the decision. Watching every scene unfold for the first time in theaters is made watching movies much more enjoyable. They actually have teaser trailers describing that the actual trailer will be out within the week, lol, I mean, it’s gotten utterly ridiculous.

      • Kaine Morrison

        I always avoid Trailers.
        They are too long and give away a lot of stuff.

  • Ultron

    I’m the best.

    • Strong Enough

      screw you ultron

      • Ultron

        I will kill you, mortal.

  • Ultron

    I’m the best.

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  • Strong Enough

    I can still hear Loki crying like a girl about his “throne”

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