A few days ago, we got our first look at how Mark Ruffalo’s incarnation of the Incredible Hulk will appear in the upcoming superhero ensemble film The Avengers (pictured above). Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios and producer of the film, recently sat down with the Los Angeles Times and gave a few more details regarding the character’s new look in the film.
“He’ll be about the same size he was in ‘The Incredible Hulk’ [which was about 9 feet tall] or maybe a little bit smaller. His muscles won’t be quite as cut. We figure he’s been the Hulk now for a few years and [his physique is changing]. He’s not as cut or as ripped as he was in ‘The Incredible Hulk.’ The most important thing is that face. As you can already see in that concept painting, it is — more than any Hulk that’s ever been done in live action — a Hulk that let’s you see the actor in there. You will be able to see Ruffalo in there. That was a big revelation for us. It’s just a concept painting, but in that you can see the [influence of Marvel Comics pioneer and original Hulk artist Jack] Kirby, as people have already pointed out, but also, and equally important in this case, Ruffalo’s eyes and his cheek structure. It is him.”
Regarding why this approach wasn’t used with the previous film versions he explained:
“Hulk was Hulk, he’s not any one actor and Hulk should look like Hulk. It was like Iron Man’s armor, in a way, it wouldn’t change depending on the actor wearing it. But we’ve taken a different approach because Hulk is Banner and, frankly, we came to question our approach. Why are we not doing it this way? So we did a few designs that put Ruffalo into it, and we immediately saw how much more you feel for the creature. When you keep that connection going between Banner and the Hulk and you have characters around him trying to reach Banner inside — ‘Bruce, calm down,’ and all of that classic Hulk stuff — it means more if you see the same actor throughout. I think before it was something we thought might look silly. We were nervous about getting it good enough [via visual effects] to work. Frankly, it was the same way we were nervous early on about making Steve Rogers skinny for ‘Captain America.’ Is this going to look disturbing? Is this going to look silly? In the end, we got that one right. We’re going to get this one right.”
Directed by Joss Whedon, the film also stars Chris Evans as Captain America, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, and Tom Hiddleston as Loki.
The Avengers hits theaters on May 4, 2012.