S.H.I.E.L.D. Security Warning
What we're about to show you is classified information collected during several covert meetings at a secret location not far outside London, England. It was there that we met with the group known as "The Avengers," a team of extraordinary individuals assembled by Nick Fury to combat the world's greatest enemy forces. As the team -- whose members include Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Thor and the green monster they call Hulk -- readied themselves for their toughest mission yet, our Fandango Field Agent Erik Davis risked everything to bring you these top secret details regarding their next adventure, Avengers: Age of Ultron, in theaters May 1.
Read at your own risk...
Date: Summer 2014
Field Agent: Erik Davis
(Known aliases include Fandango Contributing Editor and Mr. Awesomesauce)
Top-Secret Character Briefing: Captain America
(Known aliases include Steve Rogers and Chris Evans)
When We Last Saw Him: Captain America: The Winter Soldier
We're in some sort of bunker that's housing a ship the Avengers call their Quinjet. This is a new version, upgraded following the attack on New York City during the Avengers' previous mission battling Loki and the invading Chitauri. This Quinjet is larger than the first version, with additional seats and storage areas, not to mention upgraded weaponry. Following a tour of the Quinjet, we're briefed by Steve Rogers, aka Captain America (Chris Evans). He's still in uniform when he greets us with that down-to-earth, friendly persona we've read about in various news clippings. As he gathers us in front of the Quinjet, we spot an Avengers "A" patch on his right shoulder, a notable addition to his newest red, white and blue suit.
Four Avengers: Age of Ultron Secrets Revealed by Captain America
What's Happened to Captain America Since Fighting the Winter Soldier: "He’s adjusting," says Cap. "The team doesn’t have anyone to report to now. There’s no more S.H.I.E.L.D. so we’re all kind of depending upon one another, but that gives him an opportunity to kind of take more of a leadership role I suppose. Since there’s no one else giving him orders, he doesn’t have to question the chain of command or anyone’s motives, but it does mean he needs to rely on his team a lot more so it’s just kind of added a little bit more tension to the actual dynamic of the Avengers."
On His Leadership Role: "There are more relationships, personal relationships," Cap tells us. "These guys have all been in battle so I think for the most part, there aren’t as many conflicting egos in terms of who’s leading this crew. It’s more personal conflicts and more personal questions about who they are as people and what they’re looking for and what makes sense and what’s right and wrong. It’s not so much about who’s the front man.
What He Thinks About Ultron: "There’s an ideology behind Ultron that makes him more unique than just a bad guy. He doesn’t wanna just kill the Avengers. He doesn’t wanna just destroy the world. He has these monologues and these beautiful speeches that kind of embody a certain mentality about what’s wrong with humanity. It represents something deeper than just, 'I'm evil and I don’t like the good guys.'"
The Evolution of a Team: "The first Avengers, it’s growing pains. It’s getting to know each other, finding trust, understanding our roles and developing allegiance. This time, we’re a unit. We hit the ground running in this movie, and since the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D. we’re forced to depend on one another -- so right from the jump in this movie there’s a very clear understanding that this is a team and that we operate as a team. We’re gonna win as a team and we’re gonna lose as a team. That’s kind of the undercurrent. There’s no question about each other’s loyalty to one another. It’s just a matter of how to go about as a team jumping these hurdles."
Field Agent Fun Facts
-- While the connection between Cap and Black Widow is still there following the events of The Winter Soldier, this movie will definitely reveal more about Widow's past. "This movie begins with kind of a connection between the two of us, but she has her own arc in this movie," he tells us. "They do really good stuff with [Black Widow] in this one with her personal stories."
-- There won't be much time for a reunion between superheroes in Age of Ultron because the action gets going right from the start. Says Cap, "The opening scene is boom, so we don’t wanna be like, 'What have you been up to?' That’s in no way a cheat. You don’t wanna waste your time having reunion moments. You just wanna get these guys fighting together."
-- Expect Captain America's fighting style to evolve even more. "You just can’t be Jason Bourne. We gotta see this guy do stuff that’s like, yeah, he deserves a spot on this squad. In [Winter Soldier] he’s pinballing off of jets and doing unbelievable things. I don’t wanna take a step back, so we gotta make sure that he’s continuing training. His fight style needs to advance a little bit. I don’t wanna go full Bruce Lee, but there needs to be more than just haymakers and fun kicks. There needs to be a consistent display of strength. Utilize your environment in a way that’s like, 'That’s right, he can pick up a motorcycle with one hand…'"
-- Even though they're constantly at odds and expected to end up on opposite sides come 2016's Captain America: Civil War, Cap reveals that his favorite Avengers is actually Iron Man. "I really like Iron Man just ‘cause I can’t get enough of Downey. Every single line he gives is so good. It’s really crazy watching him work if you ever get a chance. We wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for Downey and what he did with the first Iron Man.
Top-Secret Character Briefing: Hawkeye
(Known aliases include Clint Barton and Jeremy Renner)
When We Last Saw Him: The Avengers
One of the more intriguing members of the Avengers is Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), whose whereabouts have been unknown since the Avengers last assembled in 2012. A known associate of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Nick Fury, Hawkeye was noticeably missing in action during Captain America: The Winter Soldier. So what's he been up to since Loki brainwashed him in the first Avengers? And will we see more of Hawkeye in Age of Ultron?
Not long after our meeting with Captain America, we're whisked away to what looks like an abandoned warehouse. It's a large empty space that's unmarked like the others, and we're told Hawkeye will be arriving momentarily. It's clear whatever is left of S.H.I.E.L.D. doesn't want us knowing much about their mission against Ultron, but there are clues. Earlier we spotted a whiteboard with various illustrations of the upgrades to Hawkeye's equipment, thanks to Tony Stark, aka Iron Man. But as one of the only Avengers whose powers consist of an ordinary bow and arrow, we were curious to see how he'd fit into their latest adventure.
When Hawkeye arrived, he entered sans suit with a no-nonsense look on his face. We expected as much from the most secretive Avenger, but that didn't stop us from seeking out some much-needed answers.
Four Avengers: Age of Ultron Secrets Revealed by Hawkeye
Where Hawkeye Was During the Events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier: "You’ll find out in this movie where he’s been," he says. "It’s actually a really wonderful secret reveal. It’s pretty awesome."
His Reaction to the Fall of S.H.I.E.L.D.: "My take is that it’s probably a good thing. [Hawkeye] is kind of a loner anyway, and he’s a team player only 'cause he sort of has to be. He’s not really a company man. Captain America can be that guy. In [Age of Ultron] you'll understand why [Hawkeye] thinks the way he thinks. And with S.H.I.E.L.D., I don’t think it was ever really that important to him. [Nick] Fury’s awesome. He likes Fury and will do anything for him, but he's not a company man. He doesn’t punch in and punch out."
Becoming a Superhero Without Having Superpowers: "You have to be a smart fighter when you don’t have superpowers, and that’s what makes him sort of super, in a way," Hawk explains. "You know, he has to use his mind as much as his physical ability, as well as his ability to never miss. I still miss [laughs]... but, yeah, stay the distance and don't miss."
On Why Hawkeye Seems to Be Such a Grump: "You have to work as a unit, as a team, otherwise we all fail or I die or somebody else dies," he explains. "So that’s where the skepticism comes in. It’s not just to be grumpy or not like somebody -- it’s all there for a reason, and [you'll see what I mean] in this movie."
Field Agent Fun Facts
-- Expect a lot more of Hawkeye in Age of Ultron versus The Avengers. "Some wonderful secrets and relationships deepen," he says. "There's a lot more of him to deal with versus the hypnotized version of him." And that seems to be the case with all of the characters in what Hawkeye calls "a big, big, big movie. "As their relationships with one another deepen and become more intimate, the forces of evil will either bring them closer together or pull them farther apart."
-- The friendship between Hawkeye and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) from the first Avengers will definitely carry over into the sequel. "They have a long history together, and more of that is revealed as well."
-- But while you'll get more of Hawkeye and Black Widow in Age of Ultron, much of his character will revolve around the questionable relationship he forms with the two Avengers newbies, Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson). "They’re great characters, and my character and them have a lot to do together," he says. "It's a little blurry on where they stand, which I appreciate. I’m sort of policing them to see if they’re worthy or not, if they’re good or bad guys. I question them a lot."
-- Fans of Hawkeye may get to see more of him on one of Marvel's TV shows, like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. While nothing is official yet, he admits discussions are ongoing. "There was talk of having some of the guys go and jump onto a TV show. I remember mentioning something about that," he says. "There has to be a good rhyme or reason for it, but I like the character. I’ve always liked to explore the guy more -- he’s an interesting character to me."
Avengers: Age of Ultron comes to theaters on May 1.
Previous Mission Briefings on Avengers: Age of Ultron