There has been so much news coming out of San Diego Comic-Con that it can get a little hard to keep up. What it seems like most people are eager to learn about this year, though? Movies, movies, movies. After the bombshell of an announcement from Warner Bros. that Batman will be in the next Superman movie (unfortunately it’s been highly suggested that it will be Bats vs. Supes, and not a World’s Finest movie), Marvel held their panel and unleashed a slew of information to ravenous fan boys and girls. While people were eager to learn all about the next “phase” of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, they were just as excited to learn that Joss Whedon has titled the Avengers sequel – Avengers 2: Age of Ultron.
Wait…what? Age of Ultron? Really? Out of all the possible storylines to adapt from the comics…Age of [expletive] Ultron?! For those of you who don’t know Age of Ultron was Marvel’s most recent event, which ran for 10 issues (more if you count all of the frivolous tie-ins) and it was…not very good. I actually dropped it after the first three issues and decided to “trade wait” it, but after reading reviews and synopses the general consensus was “don’t.” Seriously, just check out these scores on Comic Book Roundup.
Here’s the curious bit about Whedon choosing “Age of Ultron” as the subtitle for Avengers 2 – Wolverine is very important character in that chain of events. Now take this into consideration – the movie rights to Wolverine belong to Fox, while the rights to Avengers, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk and Captain America are held by Marvel Studios. This is why the first Avengers was completely devoid of any X-Men First Class like cameos by Hugh Jackman. So Whedon has chosen to adapt a story that features a character that the studio does not currently have the rights to?
This means one of two things:
- It’s Joss Whedon, and we should have faith in his ability to turn Age of Ultron into something enjoyable. Not only is he one of the best directors in America right now, but his run on Astonishing X-Men was incredible, and he is no stranger to source material.
- This one is the tinfoil hat stretch – Fox and Marvel Studios are secretly in negotiation to lend the rights to at least Wolverine over to Marvel Studios for Avengers 2. I have absolutely no proof of this, like I said tinfoil hat theory, and it’s pretty far fetched, but after Hugh Jackman said that he really wanted Wolverine to be in the next Avengers movie it’s certainly something to consider.
In all likelihood what the decision most likely comes down to is marketing. There’s always the chance that the movie itself will have nothing to do with the actual events of Age of Ultron – no time travel, no Wolverine, no crazy deus ex machina and no Angela. The subtitle has a nice ring to it though, and you can just make it an old school Masters of Evil vs Angers story. Now, you may be tempted to pick up the collected edition (which retails for $75) to familiarize yourself with the source material, but this one instance where I will actually discourage you from doing so. Trust me.