Mark Ruffalo Admits We Didn’t Get The Best Of The Hulk Until Thor: Ragnarok

hulk thor ragnarok

Mark Ruffalo has been the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Hulk for almost a decade, but thanks to the complicated rights issues with Universal, he’s never been able to headline his own solo movie. That hasn’t stopped him from becoming one of the franchise’s most popular supporting players, though, but the actor hasn’t always been having as much fun playing the role as we’ve had watching him.

That’s fairly understandable when he spends a lot of time parading around in a motion capture leotard and pretending to be a gigantic green rage monster, but only in the last few years has the visual effects technology caught up to where Marvel always wanted it to be.

In new book The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe via ComicBook, Ruffalo admits that we didn’t see the best of the Hulk until Thor: Ragnarok.

“I knew Banner fairly well, but I still didn’t know the Hulk. He was a mystery to me. When we get into Ultron, there’s that scene where Wanda Maximoff puts the juju on him, where he’s berserking. What is he afraid of? It’s Banner. The only thing in the universe that Hulk is afraid of is Banner. Now, I can move. Before, you had to separate your facial performance from your physical performance. Now, it’s all integrated. Now, we’re getting into facial recognition, so I can actually see my face as the Hulk in really rudimentary ways. They’re capturing it all, I can see it all happening in real time. Not only that, when I’m doing ADR, they’re capturing facial movement again. So I get another crack at the performance. And, of course, it’s a collaboration with my brothers and sisters in the animation department.”

The double act between Banner’s alter ego and Thor was a thing of beauty, before Avengers: Endgame introduced Smart Hulk to allow him to add more depth to his performance. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings‘ credits scene teased that he’ll mostly be back in Banner mode for She-Hulk, so there’s still plenty for him to do within the confines of the MCU.