Marvel Studios: Assembling a Universe (2014) Movie Script

Marvel Studios - "Assembling a Universe"
With the new studio set
up, the way things work now,
is there more of an opportunity
for a crossover here and there
with Marvel characters in the movies?
If you listen to the
characters that we are working on
currently and you put them all
together, there's no coincidence
that may someday equal the Avengers.
I think, uh...
I think just having that...
that possibility on the horizon
is something that excites all of us.
Sort of looking at
this as more than just a movie
but a group of films.
We drove down to comic con
to premiere footage from "Iron Man,"
and we open up the front
page of a local newspaper,
and basically it says,
"Marvel rolls out the 'B' team."
Now, later that day, the
tide would start to turn.
All right. Who's ready for Iron Man?
Wearing the suit
is one of the great joys
of playing Tony Stark.
My turn.
As soon as I heard
that there was a possible part,
I was desperate to be a part of it.
I picked up a book one day, and it's
like, "oh, wow. Hey, I'm Nick Fury."
I got my eye on you.
It all started here.
If all these films are
the road to "the Avengers,"
then it was very important
that they connect.
Sir, we found it.
The question that we've
been asked since we announced "Thor"
was, "how are you gonna
fit this into the universe?"
I'm not sure we could
have done this interlinked
Marvel cinematic universe
without Captain America.
- I got to put her in the water.
- Please don't do this.
The fact that we don't have to
end the story just opens the door
to some really great evolutions
that the character can go through.
You've been asleep,
Cap, for almost 70 years.
My dream team.
This is the Avengers.
Every time you put the suit
back on, you get really excited.
Say my name!
We want something new
and something unexpected,
and that's what led us last year
to announce "Guardians of the Galaxy."
Sometimes you've got to
run before you can walk.
I am Iron Man.
Tony Stark's
declarative statement
set the groundwork for what
would become a much larger story.
Marvel Studios had a vision...
a single universe
inhabited by heroes and villains
across multiple feature-film franchises.
When we started Marvel Studios,
the self-produced films,
we got financing to
make movies ourselves.
Avi Arad was the head of the studio
at the time and did a tremendous job.
We wanted to control the
destinies of our own characters.
We wanted to decide
when, how, and which ways
we would bring them
to film entertainment.
Some of the biggest
characters from Marvel comics
were already tied up...
Spider-Man, Fantastic Four, X-Men...
so the idea of Marvel
studios coming along and...
and launching itself,
this sort of upstart mission,
but doing it without their biggest guns,
there was some skepticism.
There's such a big library that we have.
All we had to do
is take the best of it.
We were tasked with doing
two movies right off the bat.
We chose Hulk because we
believed that there was
more to be showcased out
of the Hulk character,
and we chose Iron Man because
we believed in the content
and the concept and the comic.
He's a complicated figure, and
I think he kind of represents
the dark side in all of us and that hope
that we all overcome our own demons.
I had my eyes opened.
I came to realize that I
have more to offer this world
than just making things that blow up.
It's a huge reflection
of how Marvel tells stories.
People relate to Tony.
He's a billionaire, but
they still relate to him
because he's laying out his
personal problems, his relationships.
It's one of our
most interesting characters,
and it's our burden
to convince the rest of
the movie-going public
that that's the case.
We went out to I think about
30 writers on the first film,
and they all passed.
No one was interested
in writing this movie.
So we just kept sending
out this packet in a letter.
Iron Man's a character,
60 years of history,
one of the mainstays of Marvel.
Pass. Pass. Pass. Pass.
And when it came to looking
for a director on "Iron Man,"
Jon's name popped up and said,
"we have to meet.
There's something interesting there."
He deserves a lot of
credit for signing up
with this new studio that,
yes, we had producer credits
and we had involvement in
those early Marvel movies,
but ultimately we're
an independent studio
with a bond company that had
never made a movie before.
David Maisel had
come up with this whole
financing idea that we could
put together a big slate,
doing it from the ground floor
up, all in-house at Marvel,
and it was all slowly coming
into focus during "Iron Man 1."
They had a fund, and we
had exactly that much money,
and you had exactly that much time,
and we had a release date.
But nobody expected too much of it.
There was a sense that
if we didn't pull it off,
the studio wouldn't be around anymore.
And the fact that it's
Marvel Studios' first film
and it's not a big Hollywood studio...
so it's really a big independent movie.
You know, Marvel has shown
that these types of movies
could be very successful
at the box office
without having a big name driving it.
So, as a filmmaker, I
was able to cast the movie
as I would for a movie
I'd love to see, whether it
was a small independent movie
or a big Hollywood movie.
I assure you, the day weapons
are no longer needed to keep
the peace, I'll happily
transist to manufacturing bricks
and beams for baby hospitals,
making hemp pants, and the like.
But until that time,
can I get you a drink?
Ever since Robert was
announced as being Iron Man
and Tony Stark, people
really dug the idea,
at least in the fan world
who knew what Iron Man was.
And I think people who
didn't know who Iron Man was,
was intrigued by anything
Robert would be involved with.
The only time
I've ever gone up to
somebody at a restaurant
was when I saw Kevin Feige
after they announced Robert Downey Jr.
Just to say, "Kevin, that
was the dopest move ever."
It explained everything about the movie
that needed to be explained...
it explained their intent,
the integrity they had
about which actors they were going for,
and it was a real sea
change once Kevin took over.
And he said, "that's the
first decision I got to make
as the head of the studio."
I really took note of it.
Playing someone who's conflicted
and conflicted for the right reasons
and doesn't see the
potential that they have
and then starts living
in accordance with a code
is a great old-fashioned theme,
but I hadn't ever imagined
that I could be involved
in something that
demonstrates it on this scale.
And, you know, stock
brokers coming up to me
and taking off their tie
going, "Tony Stark, man,
let me tell you, in issue 117, the guy..."
you know, and I'm like, "wow."
Robert knew what a big opportunity
it was to be cast in this role.
I just finally know...
what I have to do.
And it was a redemption for him
in the same way that Tony was,
in many ways.
I think there's a destiny
to just about everything.
Um, all the guys you see down this row
are pretty much the
reason I'm here today,
so I'd like to thank them for
giving me a great opportunity.
And the other cast
fell into place very easily
'cause people seemed to like the idea
of working with him and I together.
Like, that was interesting to them.
People who wouldn't normally
do that kind of movie,
like Gwyneth, were reaching out.
I actually don't think that you
could tie your shoes without me.
I'd make it a week.
- Really?
- Sure.
What's your social security number?
When she'd
agreed to be in the movie
and she came into Jon's office,
Jon started crying
because he was so happy
that he knew he had the right
central elements to his movie,
and then she was like, "oh, baby."
And then she started
crying about something else,
and then we're all sitting
there, like, weeping.
You'd have thought we were getting ready
to do some really important,
like, Merchant Ivory movie.
The fact that Robert was
playing Tony was so...
I thought was so incredible,
and he's always been
one of my favorite actors
and always been somebody
that I wanted to work with.
I committed to the movie
without ever reading anything.
It was just Jon
explaining the character,
explaining how the
relationships were gonna be,
and kind of asking for that
trust, that leap of faith.
I'm glad I ended up
doing it 'cause it was
a great experience, and
it was a great movie.
- Ms. Potts.
- Yes?
May I speak to you for a moment?
I'm... I'm not part
of the press conference,
but it's about to begin right now.
I'm not a reporter.
I'm Agent Phil Coulson
with the Strategic Homeland
Intervention Enforcement
- and Logistics Division.
- That's quite a mouthful.
We had a government
man in Agent Coulson,
and we were like, "oh, he
should be from S.H.I.E.L.D."
- We were having fun with it.
- So I was thrilled when I got a call.
And then, at that point in the script,
the role was just a couple of scenes,
and I was nervous because,
as a veteran of doing movies
where you play in a couple scenes,
if anything's gonna get cut out,
it's not gonna be Gwyneth or Robert.
It's gonna be you.
And yet I just could not resist.
Luckily, that character
seemed to really fill a need.
I think he helped lay the groundwork
for this whole S.H.I.E.L.D. role.
You'll be hearing from us.
- From the Strategic Homeland Int...
- Just call us S.H.I.E.L.D.
As we were in
production on the film,
the idea of a Nick Fury
cameo started coming up.
And it frankly started
with a cold call I got
from Sam Jackson's agent saying,
"Hey, anything for Sam?"
"Actually, you think
he'd want to do a cameo?"
Sam loves comics. He's read
comics I think his whole life.
And he was well aware
that he was the inspiration
for the Nick Fury character
in the Ultimates series.
When I was a kid,
Nick Fury was a white guy
running through the jungle with
a whole bunch of other white guys.
And then he was David
Hasselhoff, and then I picked
up a book one day, and
it's like, "hey, that's me."
I was, you know, all in favor of it.
When we contacted his people, we
were like, "we need him for half a day."
No one was supposed to know.
We didn't even let him walk
from his trailer to the set.
We drove his car onto the stage,
parked it next to the set.
He got out, went right onto the set,
did this thing, got back in the
car, drove back to his trailer.
We were so convinced that no
one's ever gonna find out...
it's gonna be such a secret...
but it was so cool
and such big news that, by Monday,
it was all over the place.
You think you're the
only superhero in the world?
Mr. Stark, you've become
part of a bigger universe.
You just don't know it yet.
And, of course, he was
telling that to Tony Stark,
but that was also us
telling that to the audience
to see how they'd react.
And the next week, after
the film had come out,
there were stories everywhere
about who Nick Fury was,
what that meant, does that
mean that these characters exist
within the same universe?
And that was what we intended.
They do exist in the same universe.
We started looking at the list
of characters that we had...
Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America, Thor,
and all of the characters
in the Marvel universe
that hadn't been taken
yet by other studios.
And listen, to be honest with you,
the focus was
"make a great Iron Man film.
Introduce Iron Man.
Start Iron Man as a new franchise."
But in the back of my head, I thought,
"isn't this unique that all
these characters happen to form
one of Marvel's most popular
comic series, 'the Avengers.'"
It told not only Hollywood
but I believe the world
that we are serious about
telling great stories
and we have great characters,
and we're going after the
best actors for these roles.
Everything was... was
coming together all at once,
and it had helped push the
envelope a little further.
We had a group of talented people
and we did something that
kind of was an unproven entity.
It wound up being interesting
and entertaining to people.
And the audience has driven
the success, you know?
That's what's been cool.
Marvel studios had taken flight.
More and more characters
were being developed
to take their place in
this brave new world.
The Marvel cinematic
universe was about to arrive.
What if I told you we were
putting a team together?
Who's "we"?
After you do a first film,
and if you're lucky enough
that the audience is sort of
clamoring for the next one,
that's half the work right there.
I mean, it really is,
"okay, we've hit the tone,"
and that gives you a lot of freedom
to jump into what story
you want to tell next.
As we were finishing the last
couple of weeks on "Iron Man,"
maybe had one-week breather
and then went up to Toronto,
where we started filming
"the Incredible Hulk."
We wanted to go back to the
broader sense from the comics
and really the fugitive-type
manhunt structure
of the television series,
which was just brilliant.
Bruce Banner learns that
maybe that monster within him
is something that can do good.
And what Marvel Studios
has done is very similar
to what Marvel comics
did back in the day.
They built individual stories
that stand on their own two feet,
then they found a way
to take those stories
and weave them into a larger narrative.
That's something that we haven't
been able to do in the movies
until the end of "Incredible Hulk"
when Tony Stark walks in
to talk with General Ross.
That was the first time
audiences started to go,
"Wait a minute.
These worlds are connected."
Marvel had a sense that
the Avengers were coming,
so we slowly introduced more characters.
I guess I didn't really
know what the future would be
for the Black Widow.
I didn't know whether she would reappear
in future "Iron Man" films.
So to be a part of it, it's pretty exciting.
Final fitting.
Doesn't she look great?
What do you think?
Questions, comments, concerns?
- Compliments?
- She weighed 170 pounds
when I hired her,
and then she got into shape.
There was a lot of other things
to take into consideration.
There was Nick Fury's involvement,
because he became this
cross-pollinating element.
Contrary to your belief, you are
not the center of my universe!
- Yeah, I get it.
- I have bigger problems than you
in the Southwest region to deal with.
My purpose is to
come in and actually give,
more or less, a history
of who Tony Stark's dad was
and what his position in the
Marvel universe should be.
Clearly you know my Dad
better than I did.
As a matter of fact, I did.
He was one of the founding
members of S.H.I.E.L.D.
- What?
- Howard Stark is an integral
figure in the Marvel universe.
He's kind of the godfather
of the whole thing.
You know, he worked on Captain
America's super soldier program.
He was associates with Nick Fury.
He's an important figure.
You know, we had the idea of
reaching out to John Slattery,
and he only worked one
day on "Iron Man 2."
It's a pretty integral
day considering how much
he's gonna have to tie
this whole world together.
One day, you'll figure this out,
and when you do, you
will change the world.
The biggest challenge is
acknowledging prior events
in the Marvel universe
and how can we be smart
about planting seeds for future stories.
- I've been reassigned.
- Huh.
Director Fury wants me in New Mexico.
Fantastic. Land of enchantment.
- So I'm told.
- Secret stuff.
Something like that.
At the end of it, I
think I turned to Kevin Feige
or Louis d'Esposito and just said,
"what's in New Mexico?"
And they're like... "Oh, oh! Thor!
Thor. You're in Thor.
Did anyone tell you?
You're in Thor."
And that was how I found out.
The Marvel universe...
it's called a universe for
a reason... it's a big place.
So we wanted to go to a
cosmic level with Thor.
He's from a place called Asgard,
which is within the nine realms,
and he's the God of Thunder.
He has a weapon called
Mjolnir, which is a big hammer.
His father banishes Thor
out of Asgard down to Earth,
and he strips the hammer from him.
You can well
imagine that if a hammer,
apparently evidencing
extraordinary power
and unliftable, arrives on Earth,
then S.H.I.E.L.D. is
going to be interested.
Here I stand, in New Mexico,
where an anomaly has taken place.
Agent Coulson is summoned
to investigate and find out
if there's anybody
who's potentially worthy of recruiting.
I think the
humor in all the Marvel films
allows people to buy into
the fantastical kind of world.
Any chance you get to kind of laugh,
it takes the pressure off, you
know, of having to believe that
there's a guy with a big hammer and
a red cape flying around the place.
In "Thor," you are
introduced to the character
who you really won't
meet until "the Avengers,"
But we do tease Clint Barton, Hawkeye.
I had shot a scene speaking
to a then-uncast Clint Barton
in the crane, and to see
those scenes cut together
and suddenly I had a
scene with this actor
whose work I like so
much was a real thrill.
All right, show's over.
You know, in the first film,
as Thor grows to become the hero,
his brother Loki descended
to become the villain.
- Let me explain to father.
- Father is dead.
The burden of the throne
has fallen to me now.
Loki is the one character
that everyone loves to
hate and they hate to love.
Loki is this lost, damaged prince
struggling to find a
place within the family,
struggling to find a
place within the universe.
What I did find exciting was
seeing the formative moments
in this origin story
of a Loki who could then
fire off into other Marvel
movies with the audience knowing
from whence the potential for evil came.
For people that are
familiar with the comics...
they know about some of the
macguffins that people are after.
So at the end of "Thor,"
we introduced the Tesseract.
Legend tells us one
thing, history another.
But every now and then, we find
something that belongs to both.
Well, I guess that's worth a look.
That is the Tesseract.
That is a source of a
kind of super-nuclear power
which will give the holder of that
power a kind of unlimited capability.
It fit perfectly into
sort of the structure
that we were working on across films.
We knew that it had cosmic origins,
and the only cosmic element
that we've introduced this far
into the Marvel cinematic
universe is Thor,
is Asgard, is the nine realms.
So we started saying, "what
if that's where it came from?"
In "Captain
America," the Red Skull tried
to become a kind of
superpower with this Tesseract.
The origin of Steve Rogers,
of Captain America,
is inherently in World War II.
I love the period... I love
the designs and the clothes
and the technology and everything.
And I wanted to prove that you
could make a period action film
and have it be as exciting
as a contemporary one.
So we decided we're gonna make a
1940s adventure superhero movie.
You know, in hindsight,
it was a great decision.
But at the time, it was
controversial internally.
But what was great about that is,
we got to spend the entire
first act with skinny Steve.
Steve Rogers
was a product of something
called Project Rebirth...
the search for the super soldier...
which was a secret
government research program
designed to unlock the
potential that we all have.
A lot of superheroes are
either born with their abilities
or they get them by accident.
This was a normal guy
who lived the majority of
his life as a normal guy,
and he's chosen because of
his values and his morals
and being noble and honorable.
Everything that the
military does in the Marvel universe
after that is an attempt to
re-create the super soldier.
We've already seen in
"the Incredible Hulk"
Bruce Banner turning into the Hulk,
Emil Blonsky turning
into the Abomination.
Those were all attempts
at replicating what Steve Rogers was.
Mr. Stark!
Dominic Cooper playing Howard Stark
was one of the most crucial
pieces of casting in the film.
It's difficult to precede Robert.
He's got such an amazing performance.
He enriches it and makes it
all sound extremely truthful.
Dominic did a great job of
just kind of feeling like,
"oh, that's... that seems like
the loins from which Tony sprung."
It just shows you a complex tapestry.
The structure offers our
fans an interconnected world
where continuity is important.
Cap, who's the leader of the Avengers,
working alongside of Tony Stark,
knew Tony Stark's father.
And his shield, his most
valuable possession as a weapon,
was given by Howard Stark.
That's what keeps us
going as filmmakers.
A noble act on Steve's
part causes him to be lost.
And we soon find him,
which is what takes us into
modern day with the Avengers.
You here with a mission, sir?
- I am.
- Trying to get me back in the world?
Trying to save it.
The stage was set.
Even after seeing
several early successes,
the creative team still hadn't
played their biggest card.
Marvel Studios is going to take
all of their top superheroes
and they're gonna put them
all together in "the Avengers"?
That's the most ambitious
movie I've ever seen.
I think what resonates
with these characters
in popular culture is the humanity.
And you see yourselves
in our characters.
A Marvel comic that was one of
my favorite was "the Avengers"
because it took some of
my favorites from "Thor"
and "Iron Man" and it put
them all together in one comic.
Like, you get them all for 25 cents!
I very much followed the Marvel universe
and took it very
seriously, and when I heard
that all this was kind of
leading up to an Avengers movie,
I have to admit that
I was pretty excited.
I just really enjoy
when they create a world
that you could kind of
escape into for a little bit.
"Avengers," the movie
itself, changed everything.
What they had
done in the movies before
was obviously extremely
informative and useful and fun,
but there's also the element of,
"okay, you have all these parts,
but how can you possibly
bring them together?"
S.H.I.E.L.D. popped up in other movies.
Sam Jackson has come in and been cool
for about two minutes and then disappeared.
Well, this is really the
movie where we get to see
why he would ever think this was
a good idea to form this team.
What a massive challenge...
impossible, really, in so many ways
to really assemble all these characters.
Nick Fury seems to trust you.
But now we need you to come in.
- What if I say no?
- I'll persuade you.
Banner is a complex character,
and he's a tough character.
As Mark Ruffalo said
when he first got cast,
"it's like this generation's 'Hamlet'...
everyone takes a shot at it."
And I thought it was a
funny way of looking at it.
They enlist him as a scientist
to help them track down
this energy source that
the Tesseract is giving off.
If there's any tampering,
sir, it wasn't at this end.
- "At this end"?
- Yeah, the cube is a doorway
to the other end of space, right?
Doors open from both sides.
In order to need the
Avengers, in order to need to
assemble this group, it has
to be a day unlike any other
when a threat appears that
no single hero could defeat.
And in our film, that villain is Loki.
The Chitauri are coming.
Nothing will change that.
What have I to fear?
The Avengers.
It's what we call ourselves.
It's sort of like a team...
"Earth's mightiest heroes" type thing.
So we've made this movie
called "the Avengers,"
and the question burning
on everybody's lips
when we started is...
"What are they avenging?"
I got this call from Kevin Feige
and Lou d'Esposito saying,
"listen, you have a really
big part in 'the Avengers.'"
And I said, "that's awesome!"
'Cause I figured, "well, come on,
all those big movie stars?
"Agent Coulson's gonna kind of pop in
and give somebody, you know, a slurpee."
And they said, "no, you have a
really important part. It's integral."
I said, "that's great, guys. That's great."
And then Kevin said...
"Yep. What happens to you is what
brings the Avengers together."
And I said "Yeah, tot...
Is this my last Marvel movie?"
You like this?
Even I don't know what it does.
You want to find out?
Agent Phil Coulson
has been, in his own words,
the glue of the Marvel universe.
I think suddenly, Loki's power
and his malevolence strikes home
and they realize that they have
to overcome their differences
and save the world.
- How do we do this?
- As a team.
Billions of people in this country
and around the world were watching
an alliance of superheroes
finally marshal forces
to demolish the bad guys.
And the result...
the biggest weekend box-office
haul here at home ever.
Fans have been wondering and imagining
if something like "the Avengers"
would ever happen. You know,
they get their wish this year.
That people have responded
to what comic fans
have known for decades,
that this kind of shared,
ongoing saga in mythology
is of interest to them, that
is incredibly gratifying.
I love comic-book movies,
especially Marvel comic-book movies.
I grew up with Marvel comics,
and I never really matured.
Jeremy Renner was hosting "SNL,"
and I was very excited
because anytime someone from
that Marvel world comes in,
the costume department looks at me like,
"all right, what are you
gonna write this week?"
- Hulk!
- Yeah, Hulk smash. I know. I know.
I won't lie... I pretty much wrote it
so that they would
make me a Hulk costume.
Marvel was one of the deciding
factors in how nerd culture
started to spill over and
begin to eclipse pop culture.
I'm here to announce that
we're building Iron Man.
Yes, that's the sound
of indestructible Wakandan vibranium.
For me, as a reader and a fan,
this was the stuff that
made me love Marvel comics.
If "Iron Man 1" was the first
in a giant Avengers assemble,
phase one, leading up
to "Avengers" itself,
"Iron Man 3" is the start of
that new road into phase two.
How do you up the stakes from "Avengers"
when you take the characters
that made up the Avengers
and put them back into
their own franchise?
Well, I think you have
to up the personal stakes.
We can go deeper into their
characters in phase two,
and I think we did that with Tony Stark.
Things get more grounded in
everything that we've set up
but also more complicated
and more challenging for Tony.
There's an
immense power about him,
but he comes around and he says,
"no, I still have responsibility
to do the right thing."
Nothing's been the same since New York.
You experience things,
and then they're over,
and you still can't explain them.
We've seen now what
they go through in "Avengers"
and how they're returning
to their own worlds,
to their own story lines,
changed from that adventure
but now ready to
proceed to the next step.
Phase two is all about
being true to a film
being a direct link to its first
film but also to "the Avengers."
And Thor, more than any
of the other characters,
went through a lot in "the Avengers."
The entire film was about
him having to come to Earth
to get his rogue brother back.
And what's great when you
have continuity like we do
and when we can make another film
and the audience is telling us,
"show us what happens next,"
is that, in "the Dark World,"
you get see what happens next.
In the immediate wake of "Avengers,"
sitting down with Kevin and him
saying, "where do we go now?"
That was really exciting.
That brother relationship
is one of the main engines
of the "Thor" movies.
You must be truly desperate
to come to me for help.
- You betray me, and I will kill you.
- When do we start?
As Marvel Studios
was unleashing epic adventures
onto movie screens around the globe,
smaller stories were being developed
to expand the universe,
giving fans a shot to further connect
with some of their favorite characters.
The great thing about
the Marvel characters
is they continue to grow
and evolve and expand.
There's a lot of other
stories you want to tell.
There are some characters
we want to highlight,
namely Clark Gregg, Agent Coulson.
And we decided to do a
couple of short films.
It seemed like a logical
step when we were building the
universe to be able to go into
different nooks and crannies
and tell stories that maybe
didn't warrant a giant feature-film
treatment but still would be
stand-alone interesting stories.
And when you look at the
history of the comics,
there's great one-off books,
and they're called one-shots.
So we took that name
for the shorts program
and told these stand-alone
stories that...
that couldn't exist anywhere
else but the Marvel universe.
During the same call when I was
told about my impending demise,
I was also told about these shorts.
And I got the feeling
that they did want to do
whatever they could
to kind of let us know
a little bit more about Coulson,
what his daily life is like,
you know, just to build the
audience's relationship to him
in advance of what's gonna go down.
So we came up with the
first few shorts, "the Consultant"
and "A funny thing happened
on the way to Thor's hammer."
The "funny thing happened
on the way to Thor's hammer"
was the drive from when we
last saw Coulson in "Iron Man 2"
straight out to New Mexico
to check out Thor's hammer.
We found it.
What I loved about
Coulson was at first,
he seems kind of just like
an annoying bureaucrat.
- Who owns that car outside?!
- I do.
But it's really more like a lease.
As the story goes along,
to my great thrill,
he turns out to be a much
more formidable character.
Sorry for the mess.
Just those action
beats that we had in there
burned through 80% of the
budget for both the shorts,
so they came to me after
I wrote the first one.
They were like, "it's great. We have
the budget for two guys talking now."
So in "the Consultant,"
I thought it would be cool
to see a couple of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents
brainstorming a way to
deal with this red-tape,
bureaucratic politics of what was
going on with the Avengers initiative.
We send a patsy to
sabotage a debriefing.
- A patsy?
- Yes, someone to screw it up,
someone so inept that General Ross
will refuse to release Blonsky.
It reintroduced Sitwell, who
had a small role in "Thor,"
and it was able to tie
up a pretty big thread
at the end of "the Incredible Hulk"
when Tony Stark meets General Ross.
You know, I hate to say
I told you so, general,
but that super soldier program
was put on ice for a reason.
I've always felt that hardware
was much more reliable.
We had just seen "the Avengers,"
so we thought about it for awhile,
and we're like, "man, New York's a mess.
There's probably those guns
littered all over the place."
"What if these young
kids found the Chitauri weapon
the day of the big battle of New York?"
When we first
conceived of the idea for "Item 47,"
Eric was smart enough to bring
in the character of Sitwell
to kind of be the
antagonist in that story.
Please stop squirming.
The Marvel universe is so
big and it's so interconnected
that smaller characters
can become more developed.
It's a short film, so obviously
you're restricted with money, time.
So telling a simple story
is a great opportunity for us
to continue to expand other characters.
So we developed "Agent Carter."
We know we have a resource in
Hayley Atwell that's being underused.
Captain America perishes in the ice.
He's not found.
He's believed dead.
What happens to Agent Carter?
It was fun to be able to play
with the kind of chauvinism
and the sexism of the mid-'40s
office place.
Luckily for her, once, um,
all the men have left for
the night to go drinking and she's
stuck doing extra office work,
there is an alarm bell that goes off,
and suddenly there is
an emergency mission.
This enemy will not
hesitate to use lethal force.
Three to five agents recommended.
We framed her as an amazing superhero
secret agent in her own right.
She's played a bigger
role in the universe
that you've already enjoyed
than you may have realized.
Tell her she'll be running
S.H.I.E.L.D. with me.
Whenever we approach any project,
it's always from the perspective
of "how can we have
the most fun with this?"
Bloody hell. It's not
exactly the Ritz, is it?
"All hail the king" was really conceived
on the set of "Iron Man 3"
by Drew Pearce and Stephen Broussard.
One of the things we wanted to
do was take the source material,
the character, the ideas
behind the character,
and find an entirely fresh take on them.
I was here in America for my big break.
This would be the tv pilot.
"Caged heat."
Wonderful piece.
Handsome lad, handsome lad.
The Marvel
universe was expanding,
and fans could follow across
the movies and the short films.
But now an opportunity to
give fans a weekly visit
into the Marvel world presented itself.
And to launch this new series,
they turned to a trusted, old friend.
I'll be honest with you,
in "the Avengers,"
as they were killing me,
there's a number of takes
of me looking at the camera,
going, "I'm the glue!"
And, you know, I
thought it was all over.
It had been quite a beautiful
ride and really felt like
the way that the fans
responded to Coulson
is kind of what breathed
life back into him.
I'm clearance level 6.
I know that Agent Coulson
was killed in action
before the battle of New York.
Got the full report.
Welcome to level 7.
We see this series as
an opportunity for us
to tell stories that
happen after "the Avengers"
and before "Avengers 2."
I like to think of it as the
boardwalk through the Marvel universe.
We have seen S.H.I.E.L.D.
in all of the Marvel movies,
and it's always big S.H.I.E.L.D.
We're sort of isolating
that into this team of six.
We go into
superheroes, weird science,
things from other planets,
things that can't be explained.
This goo, sir, very similar
to the serum Dr. Erskine
- developed in the '40s for the...
- Super soldiers.
We are a team with some special talents,
but basically we're trying to help out
or investigate cases that
have not been classified yet.
Coulson understands
very well what it's like
to be a normal human
in a supernatural world,
and so he creates a team not unlike
the way Nick Fury did in "the Avengers."
That translates in the role of
people into someone who's not
just a great anchor for us
emotionally but a great leader.
We're exactly the
right team to go around
and investigate new threats,
people attempting to kind of
utilize some of the technologies
and doorways that we
discovered in "the Avengers."
And at the same time, I got a
feeling we're gonna be taking care
of some old S.H.I.E.L.D.
business that might pop up.
And pretty much anything
that's in the Marvel comics
universe is fair game.
Might be some kind
of cloaking mechanism.
Maybe it created some kind of portal,
jumped the train there.
Ah, let's hope not.
I can't deal with Asgard today.
That's one of the goals is
to be filling in the cracks
between these giant movies
and be the piece that ties them together
through the through-line
that is the Marvel universe.
Hopefully, as it continues,
there will be a little bit
of weaving in and around the movies.
Your world is in grave danger.
We're inviting you, and
you're getting to meet
comic-book elements between
Deathlok, Lorelei, Sif.
It's been a great way to
give people an experience
in the Marvel universe
in a different fashion.
This is Colonel Glenn Talbot,
U.S. Air Force.
I need to speak with
whoever's in charge over there.
Move in. We have an agent down.
While the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
embark on new adventures each week,
this spring, movie theaters worldwide
will see the return of Captain America
as he comes face to face with his past,
and it will rock the Marvel
cinematic universe to its core.
In 2013, phase two
got off to an explosive start.
Worldwide audiences
fueled the box office
for "Iron Man 3" and
"Thor: The Dark World."
With the cinematic universe
continuing to expand,
a founding member of the Avengers
is returning to theaters
in an epic new adventure.
I moderated the Marvel panel
at Comic-Con this past year
in hall H, and people went nuts.
I think "Winter Soldier" just
kicks it up to the next level.
The biggest challenge is
exceeding expectations...
not just audience expectations
but our own expectations.
Unlike Iron Man, who goes back
to Malibu and to Pepper Potts
and to his best friend
Jim Rhodes, or Thor,
who goes back to Asgard,
Cap can't go back in time.
Cap is stuck now in this modern world.
So more than any of the other films,
"Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
is gonna connect most to "Avengers."
If you look at the
Marvel cinematic universe,
what's been constant?
It's been S.H.I.E.L.D.
Nick Fury is still
the head of S.H.I.E.L.D.
when we open the film.
The influence of S.H.I.E.L.D.
has expanded because of
what happened in "Avengers."
So here now is an organization
who is built to address things
like the raid on
Manhattan by the aliens.
And all of the sudden,
you find Nick Fury
with more resources than he's ever had.
We're gonna neutralize a lot
of threats before they even happen.
I thought the punishment
usually came after the crime.
Captain America's
still not real sure
about how the government has
intruded into everyone's lives,
And so we're trying to bring
him into an understanding
of what's going on.
This isn't freedom. This is fear.
S.H.I.E.L.D. takes the world as it is,
not as we'd like it to be.
It's getting damn near past time
for you to get with that program, Cap.
Don't hold your breath.
We get to see those other sides of Steve
as he navigates this world of grays
when he came from a place
where it was very clear
who the good guys were,
who the bad guys were.
I like the relationship
between Fury and Cap.
I think they each
maybe have trust issues.
I think they've each
been on the front line.
They've seen battles and lost friends.
They're at odds, as Nick
often is with the other heroes.
But in this film, we get to see
how both Steve is changed by Nick
but, even more importantly,
how Nick is changed by Steve.
Nick's mentor, Alexander Pierce,
head of the world security council
and very close friends with Nick Fury,
comes to help motivate Cap.
Look out the window.
You know how the game works.
Disorder, war.
All it takes is one step.
There's a certain amount of mystery
that emerges about my character.
He's got a lot of dimension to him.
He's really shrewd, smart, and
I found that really appealing.
To build a really better
world sometimes means
having to tear the old one
down, and that makes enemies.
Just when you think Cap's
embraced this new life,
the old life comes in and
punches him in the face
in the form of the Winter Soldier.
Most of the intelligence
community doesn't believe he exists.
The ones that do call
him the Winter Soldier.
One of the best Captain
America stories in the comics over
the past probably 20 years is a story
line called "the Winter Soldier."
And that story influenced
us heavily, obviously,
being the title of this film and one
of the main characters in this film.
It's this operatic relationship
between Cap and his equal,
who just happens to be
the friend that he thought
was lost in the past.
Bucky Barnes was one
of my Howling Commandos
during World War II.
In the first movie,
when Steve rescues Bucky
from the camp in the
middle of the movie,
he's being experimented on with the idea
that Bucky's a little off
and a little different now.
He's the one guy that
actually didn't make it back.
Grab my hand!
He was found, brainwashed, given
a very similar serum to myself,
and is now the winter soldier.
They really revived
him to be this assassin
and use him as a weapon
to target Steve Rogers.
We start to explore that relationship,
which is so intense and dark.
When we first find Natasha
and Steve since "Avengers,"
they have been tasked on many
different missions together,
so they have gotten to
know each other a bit.
You know, if you asked
Kristen out from statistics,
- she'd probably say yes.
- That's why I don't ask.
- Too shy or too scared?
- Too busy!
Cap and Black Widow
are very different people.
It's kind of like this odd pairing.
She has very questionable
morality, and Cap's a boy scout.
We couldn't resist the idea of putting
those two characters together
because it's fire and water.
In this story specifically,
it was important for us to
have an outsider character,
a character who didn't
already work for S.H.I.E.L.D.
- What unit you with?
- 58th para-rescue.
But now I'm working down at the V.A.
Sam Wilson.
- Steve Rogers.
- Yeah, I kind of put that together.
Starting in the '70s, Sam Wilson
was one of Cap's closest friends.
They've teamed up for
many, many, many issues.
In this movie, we've made him
a part of a paratrooper
team from the military.
And it's a very sort
of advanced flight suit.
You know, Marvel
gave him a true background.
They made him military ops
and really made the Falcon
a code name as opposed
to his actual name.
So I'm glad that they went with that,
even though I was really
looking forward to some spandex.
With "Winter Soldier," you
got to up the spectacle.
You got to up the massive nature of
this thing that people are anticipating.
We really wanted Captain America
to be responsible for
altering the cinematic universe
so that when we meet all of our characters
at the beginning of "Avengers 2,"
things are very different than
when we left the characters
at the end of "Avengers 1," and
partially that's the experience
that Tony Stark went
through in "Iron Man 3,"
and partially that's the experience
of what Thor went through
in "the Dark World,"
but primarily it's
because of the adventure
that Captain America has
in "the Winter Soldier."
The price of freedom is high...
...and it's a price I'm willing to pay.
As we journey through phase two,
audiences will next be
taken across the stars,
where another unlikely group of heroes
will become the Guardians of the Galaxy,
and Earth's Mightiest Heroes
will reassemble
to face a villain
no single hero can defeat.
With phase
two continuing to explode
across screens worldwide,
the studio is now
looking beyond the stars
to the farthest reaches of
the Marvel cinematic universe.
"Guardians of the Galaxy"
seemed like a good opportunity
to kind of go a different
direction, so we're gonna
see the world from a totally
different point of view.
It does take us back to
that same mind-set we were in
six, seven, eight years
ago when we decided,
"hey, we want to make a
feature out of 'Iron Man.'"
Guardians has been around for years.
Hard-core fans know them
well from the comics.
But really, we're
looking at something new.
The driving forces for
me was to be able to
create a gritty world that
was still very colorful.
The Guardians of the
Galaxy consisted of members,
all of whom are very
selfish, for the most part,
but they find that there's
something worth fighting for
that's bigger than themselves.
The growth of these
characters allows for the film
to kind of create its own personality
and its own identity.
That's always fun when you're
at the frontier of something new.
Who are you?
- Starlord.
- Who?
I'm Starlord, man.
Legendary outlaw?
Forget it.
To me, what defines the end of one phase
and the beginning of another
phase is an "Avengers" film.
The events of "the Avengers"
carries through the phase two films.
It goes through to "age of Ultron," as well.
Once you have your origin of a team,
the next story is really about
what can that paradigm sustain
once they've digested their shawarma?
Can these people
actually stand each other?
It's interesting 'cause we see
a lot of new loyalties and friendships.
Part of the fun of "the Avengers," the
comic, is that it's a shifting roster.
If you look at any given run,
the team can be quite different,
and we want to explore that,
so we wanted to bring some
new members into the mix.
We're introducing the
Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver,
and they did not necessarily start out
being bestest friends with the Avengers.
- And we also see the origins of Ultron.
- Ultron has been one of
the greatest Avengers
villains for decades.
He's someone, even before I
took the first film, I said,
"I know in the second one,
you have to have Ultron."
"Avengers: Age of Ultron"
is going to be
a little more grown-up
than the first one...
a little scarier, a little funkier...
but in the end, it's got the
same extraordinary characters
and a lot of humor.
And, yes, there may be some punching.
We are in the middle of Johannesburg,
where we're shooting a
sequence we've been planning
for months and months and months,
and it's gonna be awesome.
We love all of our
movies to stand apart,
and we love that
"Guardians of the Galaxy"
is a full-on action-adventure
science-fiction film
and that we sort of have techno-thriller
elements in the Iron Man films.
The new Captain America film,
"the Winter Soldier," is a political thriller.
So we don't believe that the
superhero film is a genre unto itself.
We love taking sub-genres
and putting them together
and then adding the superhero elements
into other genres of film.
As a lifelong Marvel fan,
I'm very excited
to see some of my favorite
characters on the screen.
They have such great power.
You know, they're also just like us.
The audience can feel like
they're a part of this world.
I'm excited to see what I believe
that Marvel's trying to do,
which is to continue to go outside
the most obvious characters.
I'm just like the Hulk,
except I can't turn gre...
I can, though. Don't tell anybody.
These are all chapters
in a kind of giant pop-culture
mythology, and I love that.