Samuel L. Jackson

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Watch Joss Whedon Talk The Avengers 2 At MTV Movie Awards

Brad Pitt was on hand to present the Movie of the Year Award at last night’s MTV Movie Awards where The Avengers movie assembled once again.

The Avengers won three awards, including Best Fight and Best Villain.

Joss Whedon, Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson and Chris Evans were on hand each time to accept their Popcorn, and the last time saw mention of The Avengers 2 to the delight of the crowd.

Here’s the video:

The Avengers 2 assembles May 1, 2015 with Iron Man 3 on May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, the Guardians of the Galaxy movie on August 1, 2014 and Ant-Man on November 6, 2015..

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

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The Avengers MTV Movie Awards Video Of Joss Whedon, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans & Samuel L. Jackson

The Avengers movie won Best Fight at the MTV Movie Awards with the cast of Star Trek Into Darkness presenting to Joss Whedon, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans and Samuel L. Jackson.

You can check out the video below.

The Avengers 2 assembles May 1, 2015 with Iron Man 3 on May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, the Guardians of the Galaxy movie on August 1, 2014 and Ant-Man on November 6, 2015..

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

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First Captain America 2 Image Of Chris Evans; Production Begins; Robert Redford Character Named

Production on Captain America 2, “The Winter Soldier,” has officially begun and we get a first image of Chris Evans as well.

Marvel Studios sent out the following press release announcing production will take place in Los Angeles, Cleveland and Washington D.C.

It’s also stated that Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L. Jackson will be back as Black Widow and Nick Fury, and that the character of Robert Redford is named Alexander Pierce.

In addition we get a short synopsis suggesting Scarlett Johansson will have an extended role:

“Captain America: The Winter Soldier” will pick-up where “Marvel’s The Avengers” left off, as Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and teams up with Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow, to battle a powerful yet shadowy enemy in present-day Washington, D.C.

Here’s the first image of Chris Evans as Captain America from “Winter Solider.”

Click for high-res:

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Press Release

 

MARVEL STUDIOS BEGINS PRODUCTION ON 2nd INSTALLMENT OF THE

 

ICONIC FRANCHISE “CAPTAIN AMERICA”

 

Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” Commences Principal Photography

 

In Preparation for April 4, 2014 Film Release

 

 

BURBANK, Calif. (April 8, 2013) – Following in the footsteps of the record-breaking Marvel Studios’ release, “Marvel’s The Avengers,” production on the highly anticipated release, Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” has commenced in Los Angeles, Calif., with production also including locations in Cleveland, Ohio, and Washington D.C. Directing the film is the team of Anthony and Joe Russo (“Welcome to Collinwood”) from a screenplay written by Christopher Markus (“Captain America: The First Avenger”) & Stephen McFeely (“Captain America: The First Avenger”). Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” returns Chris Evans (“Captain America: The First Avenger,” “Marvel’s The Avengers”) as the iconic Super Hero character Steve Rogers/Captain America, along with Scarlett Johansson (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” “Iron Man 2”) as Black Widow and Samuel L. Jackson (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” “Iron Man 2”) as Nick Fury. In addition, film icon Robert Redford has joined the all-star cast as Agent Alexander Pierce, a senior leader within the S.H.I.E.L.D. organization. “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is set for release in the U.S. on April 4, 2014.

“Captain America: The Winter Soldier” will pick-up where “Marvel’s The Avengers” left off, as Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and teams up with Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow, to battle a powerful yet shadowy enemy in present-day Washington, D.C.

Based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series, first published in 1941, Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” features an outstanding supporting cast that includes Sebastian Stan (“Captain America: The First Avenger,” “Black Swan”) as Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier, Anthony Mackie (“The Hurt Locker,” “Million Dollar Baby”) as Sam Wilson/Falcon, Cobie Smulders (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” “How I Met Your Mother”) as Agent Maria Hill, Frank Grillo (“Zero Dark Thirty”) as Brock Rumlow and Georges St-Pierre (“Death Warrior”) as Georges Batroc. Rounding out the talented cast are Hayley Atwell (“Captain America: The First Avenger”) as Peggy Carter, Toby Jones (“Captain America: The First Avenger,” “The Hunger Games”) as Arnim Zola, Emily VanCamp (“The Ring 2,” “Revenge”) as Agent 13 and Maximiliano Hernández (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” “Thor”) as Agent Jasper Sitwell.

Marvel Studios’ President Kevin Feige is producing the film. Executive producers on the project include Alan Fine, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Michael Grillo and Stan Lee. The creative production team on the film includes director of photography Trent Opaloch (“Elysium,” “District 9”), production designer Peter Wenham (“21 Jump Street,” “Fast Five”), editors Jeffrey Ford, A.C.E. and Mary Jo Markey, A.C.E. (“Star Wars: Episode 7,” “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”) and three time Oscar®-nominated costume designer Judianna Makovsky (“The Hunger Games,” “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”).

Marvel Studios’ upcoming release schedule includes “Iron Man 3” on May 3, 2013, and “Thor: The Dark World” on November 8, 2013. The studio most recently produced the critically acclaimed “Marvel’s The Avengers,” which set the all-time, domestic 3-day weekend box office record at $207.4 million. The film, which shattered both domestic and international box office records, is Disney’s highest-grossing global and domestic release of all time and marks the studio’s fifth film to gross more than $1 billion worldwide.

In the summer of 2011, Marvel successfully launched two new franchises with “Thor,” starring Chris Hemsworth, and “Captain America: The First Avenger,” starring Chris Evans. Both films opened #1 at the box office and have grossed over $800 million worldwide combined. In 2010 “Iron Man 2,” starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Scarlett Johansson, Sam Rockwell, Mickey Rourke and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury took the #1 spot in its first weekend with a domestic box office gross of $128.1 million.

In the summer of 2008, Marvel produced the summer blockbuster movies “Iron Man” and “The Incredible Hulk.”  “Iron Man,” in which Robert Downey Jr. originally dons the Super Hero’s powerful armor and stars alongside co-stars Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges, Shaun Toub and Gwyneth Paltrow, was released May 2, 2008, and was an immediate box office success. Garnering the number one position for two weeks in a row, the film brought in over $100 million in its opening weekend.  On June 13, 2008, Marvel released “The Incredible Hulk,” marking its second number one opener of that summer.

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The Avengers Oscars Footage (Video)

The Avengers reunited on stage at the Oscars with Robert Downey Jr., Samuel L. Jackson, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, and Jeremy Renner.

The Assemblers were on stage poking fun at each other as well as to present the Best Cinematography award which went to Life Of Pi.

Check out the video below for more.

For the official reuniting, check out The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015 directed by Joss Whedon.

» 2013 Oscars: Results, Opinions & Fallout

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The Avengers To Re-Unite At The Oscars: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:5500:]]Seems we don’t have to wait for The Avengers 2 to see our Assemblers as Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner, and Mark Ruffalo will re-unite at the Oscars.

All five will be on stage at the same time as presenters. See below for more.

The Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 24th on ABC.

The Avengers 2 assembles May 1, 2015 with Iron Man 3 on May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, the Guardians of the Galaxy movie on August 1, 2014 and Ant-Man on November 6, 2015..

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

 

Press Release

 

“The Avengers Cast” – Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner and Mark Ruffalo – to Present on Oscar® Show

 

BEVERLY HILLS, CA – “Marvel’s The Avengers” cast mates Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner and Mark Ruffalo will present together on the Oscar stage, show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today.

“We are happy to re-unite the ‘Avengers’ cast to present on our show,” said Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. “Audiences who enjoyed the year’s biggest box office hit will be excited to see these terrific actors back together again.”

Downey has twice been nominated for an Oscar, for his leading role in “Chaplin” (1992) and for his supporting role in “Tropic Thunder” (2008).

Evans, who will be making his first Oscar show appearance, will be seen in the upcoming “The Iceman.”

Jackson was nominated in 1994 for his supporting role in “Pulp Fiction.”  He can also be seen in this year’s Best Picture nominee “Django Unchained.”

Renner was nominated for his leading role in 2009 Best Picture winner “The Hurt Locker” and for his supporting role in “The Town” (2010).  Renner had roles in this year’s “The Bourne Legacy” and “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” (2011).

Ruffalo received his first nomination for his supporting role in 2010 Best Picture nominee “The Kids Are All Right.”

Oscars® for outstanding film achievements of 2012 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, February 24, at the Dolby Theatre™ at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and will be hosted by Seth MacFarlane live on the ABC Television Network.  The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

ABOUT CRAIG ZADAN AND NEIL MERON

Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are producers of critically acclaimed and award-winning feature films, television movies, series, and Broadway productions.  Their feature films include The Bucket List, Footloose, Hairspray, and Chicago, which won six Academy Awards including one for “Best Picture.”  For television, they’ve produced films of “Steel Magnolias,” “Life with Judy Garland,” and “A Raisin in the Sun,” among many others and the series “Smash” and “Drop Dead pa.”  They recently returned to their roots in live theater by producing Broadway revivals of the Tony-winning “Promises, Promises” and the Tony-winning 50th Anniversary revival of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.” 

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Guardians of the Galaxy Movie Will Be Samuel L. Jackson & Nick Fury Free

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:4788:]]At least we can rule out the Guardians of the Galaxy joining S.H.I.E.L.D.

Good? Bad? We’ll let you decide.

As we heard previously from Samuel L. Jackson, his Nick Fury will not be featured in Iron Man 3 or Thor 2, but will have a larger role in Captain America 2.

Now, Jackson gives a further update and says Nick Fury will be seen next in The Avengers 2 following Captain America: The Winter Soldier, meaning no appearance in James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy movie.

“No, Cap 2, then nothing until The Avengers 2, but that’s in 2014,” he told Movies.com.

As we see Nick Fury will not be the tie that binds the Marvel Phase 2 movies. But then, who?

It’s possible it just might be Doctor Stephen Strange, as Strange is rumored for Thor 2. Doctor Strange would easily fit in with the Guardians of the Galaxy movie as well. Regarding Iron Man 3, maybe Strange cameos as just that – a doctor?

So does Nick Fury not being in the Guardians of the Galaxy movie suggest anything?

Obviously it may suggest that the majority of the Guardians of the Galaxy movie takes place in space, with current thinking that one or two Guardians make their way to Earth at the end of the movie to warn them something wicked this way comes — with the something wicked being the Mad Titan, Thanos, leading into The Avengers 2.

Of course, it could be that the Guardians just go under the radar while on Earth and don’t get noticed by the likes of Nick Fury, with possibly another S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent taking notice (Wendell Vaughn would work) or none at all.

The Guardians of the Galaxy movie has an August 1, 2014 release date and is directed by James Gunn.

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News Guardians of the Galaxy movie hub for news, images and more.

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Samuel L. Jackson Wants To Be The Voice Of Joss Whedon’s S.H.I.E.L.D.

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:4787:]]Other than the use of Agent Phil Coulson, I believe it’s been said that the S.H.I.E.L.D. television series from Joss Whedon will not be tieing directly into the various Marvel Studios movies.

However, as it is S.H.I.E.L.D., some sort of Samuel L. Jackson Nick Fury cameo – at least in the first episode – would seem like a no-brainer, in addition to the the ratings it would help bring in.

So far though, Jackson hasn’t heard much about an appearance, but does offer that perhaps he could be the voice of S.H.I.E.L.D.

“I don’t know. I keep hearing about it, and I haven’t talked to Joss about it,” Jackson told MTV. “But in my mind, I would tend to think that he would, if nothing else, be like Charlie in ‘Charlie’s Angels.’ At least be the voice!”

Samuel L. Jackson also reiterated to MTV what we previously heard in that he will have a larger role in Captain America 2.

It’s a full-on role, from the original script that I read. It’s a full-on S.H.I.E.L.D. operation in ‘Captain America.’ But I don’t know — I’m meeting with the directors this week to see what happens.”

The S.H.I.E.L.D. series looks to debut this Fall on ABC and recently rounded out the cast by adding a sixth Agent.

Clark Gregg stars as Agent Coulson, with Brett Dalton as Agent Grant Ward, Iain De Caesteckeras Agent Leo Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Gemma Simmons, and Ming-Na Wen as Agent Melinda May.

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Samuel L. Jackson To Have Larger Role In Captain America 2

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We get a short update on the status of Nick Fury from Samuel L. Jackson.

The character will have a larger role in Captain America 2, similar to his role in Iron Man 2.

ComingSoon asked the actor about a potential Nick Fury movie, with Jackson basically saying to look to Captain America 2 for more from his character.

“I know him as something else because I’ve been alive longer than most of the fans that watch the movies so I know Nick Fury as the World War II veteran and all that stuff,” Jackson explained when asked if a Nick Fury movie would be necessary to further explain the character. “It might be interesting to do one day but we find out little bits and pieces about Nick and we’re going into ‘Captain America 2’ in late March.”

Previously, Samuel L. Jackson revealed that he would not be appearing in Iron Man 3 or Thor 2 as well.

The Russo Bros. are directing Captain America: The Winter Soldier which has an April 4th, 2014 release date and stars Chris Evans.

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

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Samuel L. Jackson Wants To Be A One-Armed Jedi In New Star Wars

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:4573:]]Ewan McGregor recently said that The Force is still strong with him as he would like to return to Star Wars if asked.

Now we hear from another Star Wars prequel actor with Samuel L. Jackson, currently playing Nick Fury in The Avengers and the Marvel Studios movies.

While last we saw of the character he seemingly lost his arm and died battling Darth Sidious and Anakin Skywalker, but hey, it is The Force and Star Wars so anything is possible.

Jackson seems to share that train of thought as he offers how he could return, and if asked to return would certainly do so.

“I’m not surprised but totally geeked by the idea of there being more Star Wars,” Jackson told EOnline at the Spike TV 2012 Video Game Awards. “It’s like, okay, Obi-Wan was dead when episode four started, so maybe everyone thinks I’m dead and we’ll find out what happened to Mace Windu. I can come back as one-armed or a one-handed Jedi that’s still around that didn’t actually die.”

Jackson continues stating he just wants to be a part of the Star Wars movies and he’s always loved them.

“I could do that or be a ghost hologram. I don’t care. I just want to stay associated with the franchise. Not that I won’t because I’ve been in three of them. I just always loved it. I always loved the idea of it, that there’s this whole civilization out there somewhere else that’s just as much fun and different and diverse and wild as we are.” 

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Star Wars Episode VII has a 2015 release date.

For more Star Wars news head on over to the Cosmic Book News Star Wars Movie Hub.

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No Samuel Jackson In Iron Man 3 But Yes For Captain America 2

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Marvel Studios president and producer Kevin Feige recently said that none of the Avengers would be appearing in Iron Man 3 (maybe Ant-Man?!), and now Samuel L. Jackson says more of the same.

Jackson tells Total Film Magazine (Via MTV) that Iron Man 3 will be a standalone movie and that he won’t be featured in it, but does offer where we can see the leader of S.H.I.E.L.D. next — in Captain America 2, “The Winter Soldier.”

“I think my next time as Nick Fury is in ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier.’ Because I’m not in ‘Iron Man 3,'” he told the Total Film. “None of the Avengers are in ‘Iron Man 3.’ It’s a standalone ‘Iron Man’ movie.”

So by those statements it would be “no” for Thor 2 as well, as Thor 2 follows Iron Man 3, with Captain America 2 following Thor 2.

Wonder if Nick Fury will be in the Guardians of the Galaxy movie?

Iron Man 3 blasts off May 3rd, 2013 directed by Shane Black and starring Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow), Gwyneth Paltrow and Don Cheadle.

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:3673:]]Synopsis:

Marvel Studios’ Iron Man 3 pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?

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Samuel L. Jackson Joins Robocop Reboot

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The Robocop reboot, starring Joel Kinnaman, is set to being filming in September, and another member of the cast has been added with star of The Avengers movie, Samuel L. Jackson.

While Jackson will not be playing a super spy, the actor will be playing “Pat Novak, a charismatic TV mogul and a powerful force in the Robocop world.”

Samuel L. Jackson joins Gary Oldman, who plays the scientist/creator of Robocop.

Look for the new Robocop, directed by Jose Padilha, August 9th, 2013. The movie is said to be a different take than the original.

(Via Hollywood Reporter)

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The Future of Hollywood Entertainment through The Avengers’ Eyes

Guess What?  It’s Still Good and Still Worth Your Money

A Meta-Review of The Avengers

By: Lawrence Napoli

 

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Here we are, CosmicBookNews.com faithful, three weeks removed from the release of The Avengers and (hopefully) you have all subjected yourselves to the unmitigated joy and undeniable fun that can be found within.  Our three part podcast discussion covers the major bullet points of what generally worked and what may have fallen short, so please refer to that for any specifics (spoiler free, of course!).  This article seeks to solidify my opinions, observe this film’s affects despite its short history and project what it all means for Hollywood, adaptations, the comic book industry and the future of entertaining us all: the nameless, faceless consumers.

The Avengers is a text book lesson in summer blockbuster movie production and a helpful refresher course in “Making IP adaptations work on celluloid.”  The likes of Paul Thomas Anderson and Uwe Boll should take note.  This film’s hype rivaled the coming of a new Star Wars trilogy, thus the margin for error was fairly small as the shrieks of fanboys are not easily silenced thanks to the internet.  The Avengers is a film that is equal to the task by incorporating a hefty amount of character development with a fairly simple (some would argue as “cookie-cutter”) plot while using an intimidating amount of CG to make the impossible look and feel real.  It is true that every director doesn’t have access to Mickey Mouse’s wallet, but it really wasn’t the massive set pieces, explosions, CG aliens, and wowing visual effects that made this film great.  It was really about the characters themselves and the performances that conveyed a natural chemistry, camaraderie and oft overlooked believability of such iconic personalities in close proximity to each other.  Every Avenger is connected and relevant.  Every Avenger has screen time.  Although some were overused (Hawkeye) and some may have been underused (Captain America), no Avenger was left behind as balance was clearly on Joss Whedon’s mind at every stage of this film’s production.  The action constantly escalates, the comedy eases the pace, and the dénouement combined with the final reveal not only satisfies the viewer, it compels him or her to maintain a vested interest in the future fiction of this franchise. 

Sounds like a pretty good time right?  Unfortunately, the other constant in life besides death and taxes are haters, and even a film like The Avengers has a couple of curious instances of marquee level criticism that caught my attention.  The first has to be the rather tepid review this film received in Entertainment Weekly.  I am not so self indulgent as to criticize another film review (I won’t even acknowledge the writer’s name), but the references and plot synopsis within said article are inaccurate to the extent that I question whether the writer actually saw the film as opposed to forming an opinion out of rough cuts and press releases.  Entertaining opinion is what we do ladies and gentlemen, but realizing that everyone on the Internet, reading magazines and watching TV are having their opinions formed by these featured observations is a fact that ought to demand a level of professionalism beyond flippant whimsy.  Please everyone, express your opinions, but for those in the media I must add that we must get beyond the “what” and express the “why.”  This is what allows even a negative review or opinion for a film to be valuable to the reader beyond turning them off to the film entirely.  For instance, I do feel that Joss Whedon went to the CG well once too often for the effects and action sequences in The Avengers which added to its plastic visual style and overall absurdity of what was actually happening onscreen.  That was the “what” and by itself represents a basic, but negative observation that might turn readers off to CG heavy films.  However, the scale of danger to the planet within the story demands an equally epic nature to the grandiosity of the effects that simply cannot be expressed practically with wire work and pyro.  That was the “why” which seeks to justify a necessary evil in the final product because fireworks for explosions just aren’t going to cut it.  Thus, any viewers who may prefer a little less CG in their films are tipped off, but if they are drawn to plots that are dangerously planetary, their interests may be peaked.

The next was the well publicized feud Samuel L. Jackson had with a certain film reviewer from the New York Times for producing an unimpressed opinion of The Avengers.  Once Sam started firing his displeasure over the article via Twitter, many were quick to defend the reviewer for simply expressing an opinion.  At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter which side you personally agree with because both were expressing their feelings in an industry where doing so gets you paid.  I found it odd and somewhat refreshing to see a major media entity to not simply get down on its knees for the summer juggernaut that is The Avengers because the unwritten rule is: the larger the media conglomerate, the higher the probability for it to acquiesce to anything resembling positive reception so as to maximize profit by conforming to the mainstream.  The remarkable thing about this entire confrontation is that in this day and age, with the technology Americans have at our disposal, an actual dialogue can result once something is written, recorded or filmed and then distributed by the media machine.  Social media generates intrigue because it is an active way to digest information by giving the consumer an opportunity to respond.

Let’s take a look at some of the cold, hard facts in regards to The Avengers and in Hollywood land, the only facts that matter are dollars.  With an initial budget of $220 million dollars, this film is the kind of production that is looking to print its own money, but if it misses, jobs will be lost, careers will be tarnished and stock prices could take a dip.  The Avengers proceeded to set the all time record in money made in its (domestic) debut weekend to the tune of just over $207 million dollars, effectively making back its budget in less than a week.  Globally, the film has already made over $1 billion dollars and it’s only been out for 3 weeks in this country.  Even at this early point, one can say in full confidence that this film is an absolute commercial success.  Some are even making claims that it could challenge the all time cinematic money king: Avatar, but it appears even these super heroes are not immune to the law of 50% diminishing returns at the box office.  Weekend #2 yielded a gross of $103 million while weekend #3 generated $55 million.  Sure, this film is still raking in the cash and is still number one at the box office, but its rate of intake is sputtering worse than a Dodge Neon, and it’s a long road to the $3 billion dollar mark.  Still, it doesn’t take an MBA to interpret these kind of numbers as a globally positive reception for this product, and it doesn’t require the reanimation of Nostradamus to predict that the Disney/Marvel alliance will continue to expand its roster of superhero films knowing full well that regardless of their individual performances, the true pay day exists years later when even more characters are drawn into the super film Avengers 2 or whatever they wind up calling it.  This film will continue to be profitable for as long as theatres decide to keep screening it.  If they are smart, they’ll have at least 1 screen reserved for it for the whole summer.

So what does this all mean for the future of cinematic entertainment?  Well, the immediate future sees a record setting run for The Avengers which proves that people sincerely enjoy this type of entertainment regardless of their familiarity with the source material.  It also means that the only other film that has a realistic shot at challenging this phenomenon, The Dark Knight Rises, has a very difficult task ahead of it with no Heath Ledger incident to artificially boost its exposure.  There are a number of reasons why TDKR WILL NOT match, let alone exceed, The Avengers at the box office, and some involve Anne Hathaway as Catwoman and Joseph-Gordon Levitt as NOT Robin, NOT Nightwing or NOT Jean-Paul Valley/Azrael.  However, the big reasons why we should crown The Avengers as the box office king of 2012 right now are far more obvious.  TDKR gets released awfully late in the summer season on July 20th, it cuts right in the middle of The Amazing Spider-Man’s run (released on July 4th’s weekend) and last, but not least, involves the end of the trilogy, franchise and gathering of all the fine actors attached to Chris Nolan’s reinvention of DC’s most valued asset.  We’ve seen so many Easter Eggs at the end of these types of films that suggest the possibility of more around the corner that we’ve taken them for granted.  How can Chris Nolan possibly satisfy the audience when we know that no matter what happens onscreen, the story is done?  Whether additional sequels are green-lit for these kinds of productions is not important.  It is the hope (false or otherwise) of the possibility for a further evolution of the story that adds that extra level of interest to it.  Of course, this only works if the movie was actually good and has little to no affect for the ones that we’d like to forget.  Did anyone really care that it looked like “Africa wouldn’t allow” Alan Quartermain to remain deceased at the end of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)?  

The long term future of Hollywood entertainment is somewhat alarming in that certain industry trends will have an impact on the quality of its product without reducing the cost to the audience.  The telling of stories involves the construction and application of ideas, and the only way to get those thoughts out of people’s minds is through good writing.  You’ve all seen a significant downturn in the quality of this element in Hollywood films, so should it be to no one’s surprise that Hollywood has all but deferred to the comic book industry to be the engine for nearly 100% of its action/adventure/sci-fi films?  It was smart and mutually beneficial for Buena Vista to acquire Marvel, but how smart is it to simply own the rights to an established success without being thorough in the proper adaptation of said license? 

Geoff Johns rose to the top of DC’s food chain by reinvigorating the Green Lantern comic books with fresh and edgy writing.  He all but single-handedly made that character second to Batman in terms of popularity.  He also was a co-producer for the Green Lantern film adaptation and so he shares a direct responsibility for that extremely poor production.  How on Earth could such a successful alpha male in the comic book industry allow his “adoptive baby” to be kidnapped like that?  At last year’s New York City Comicon, I was waiting in line to meet Amanda Conner and a few of her associates were discussing comic adaptations in general and her husband’s experience with the atrociously made Jonah Hex adaptation in particular.  To which Amanda Conner stated, “You don’t handle Hollywood.  Hollywood handles you,” which sums up the problem quite perfectly.  Studios only care about the name of whatever license they’ve purchased.  They don’t care about story, character and the boundaries established by both as evidenced by the fact that Hollywood productions rarely involve comic book creators during actual productions beyond the role of “consultants” which really shouldn’t apply because they are being ignored.  If Hollywood is too lazy to produce the next Die Hard, Terminator, or Alien (all of which originated from Hollywood during the 80s and early 90s) then they should subcontract entire productions to the comic book industry all together because clearly, Hollywood directors, writers and producers haven’t a clue despite thinking they have some unquestionable authority over anything that requires pointing a camera at.  This industry trend is only going to get worse because Hollywood doesn’t care about “doing it right.”  Even deplorable films like Green Lantern, Jonah Hex and LXG make enough profits in rental, retail and global ticket sales for the concept of “quality” to be completely null and void. 

The other troubling trend I see in Hollywood is how globalization has seeped into its bloodstream like malaria and is causing the outsourcing of the last great American industry.  Twenty or so years ago American studios couldn’t care less about global ticket sales at the box office because a film’s performance in the domestic market was the benchmark for all the deals that get made on the studio’s behalf in terms of distribution and licensing.  Today, the international market is more important, and we have the economic rise of China to thank for that.  Business is a numbers game, and like any other business, Hollywood seeks to constantly increase profits.  There are more non-Americans than there are Americans in the world so why should Hollywood seek to limit its audience?  It is an economic model that is eerily similar to Nintendo’s marketing and production of the Wii (a game system that clearly caters to non-gamers as opposed to gamers).  We see shades of Hollywood’s preference for the international market in the fact that Europe got to see The Avengers on April 26th of this year (more than a week before the US).  We see hints of Hollywood’s desire to exploit the international market in the fact that Disney is making Iron Man 3 as a 50% co-production with DMG Entertainment, a Chinese production company.   It remains to be seen how the shifting focus to the international market will affect the quality of Hollywood films here at home, but if we take every other American business that has done so to maximize profits, the future doesn’t seem pleasant.  For example, it practically took the entire American economy to melt down before our auto industry started making cars that we actually wanted to buy.  Iron Man 3 is going to be the next significant step in this process and will greatly determine the extent to which China influences Hollywood for the foreseeable future. (Editor’s Note: China recently purchased AMC Theaters – American Made Matt).

The Avengers is a movie that is an experiment in super-filmmaking that has its sights set on profits much larger than even the most gullible American markets can provide.  It’s the kind of fanboy adaptation that has me excited to see more characters and larger crossovers, but it also makes me wonder that in the interest of maximum economic efficiency if I will ever see an adaptation of Superman through the eyes of an entirely Chinese production company.  How far removed is Iron Man from Superman to non-comic book industry professionals and fans?  Something about that last thought seems all too wrong, not because Superman himself is considered an American (he’s not, he’s Kryptonian), but the idea of Superman, truth, justice, so on and so forth IS American and the possibility of selling that idea out to China, on top of everything else, is stomach turning.  I constantly lobby for higher quality in the production of Hollywood films in my reviews, but never once did it occur to me with the ever decreasing sales in the domestic market that Hollywood could give America the finger and relocate overseas, until this moment.  Sure, a lot of doomsday scenarios would have to play out in the business world for that to happen, but the paranoid conspiracy theorist in me gravitates to the extreme negative.  The future seems bright for Hollywood, but its potential to “flame on” is equaled by its potential to flameout here in the US of A, leaving the rest of us out in the cold.

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The Avengers (2012): 20 Good Quality Teaser Trailer Screen Shots

Here are 20 good quality screen shots from The Avengers teaser trailer, which is the post-credit scene for Captain America: First Avenger.

RELATED: Captain America: First Avenger final scene w/The Avengers trailer officially released.

These are probably the best I have seen, and with the trailer be taken down as fast as people can get them up, these will make do!

We see decent shots of Chris Evans as Captain America, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Tom Hiddleston as Loki, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Hemsworth as Thor and Robert Downey Jr. as the Invincible Iron Man!

Thanks to CBN user “Quasar_Is_An_Avenger” for sending these in!

The Avengers hits May 4th, 2012 and is directed by Joss Whedon, starring Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Chris Evans as Captain America, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk, Scarlett Johansson as the Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye.

Head on over to the Cosmic Book News The Avengers Movie Hub for more news, images and trailers.

UPDATE: For 10 high-res images launch this viewer.

Click to enlarge and launch viewer:

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SDCC 2011: The Avengers (2012) Thor and Nick Fury Art

Marvel Studios released two more posters for The Avengers featuring Chris Hemsworth as Thor and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury.

These are part of the interlocking posters including Captain America, Iron Man, Hawkeye and Black Widow.