It's just over a year since Marvel released 'Avengers Assemble' upon the world, where it made an incredible $1.5 billion and broke records along the way. With speculation surrounding casting and possible crossovers (with 'X-Men: Days of Future Past') for the sequel, here's a few interesting facts from the first you might not be aware of.
Fact 1: Before Mark Ruffalo was (perfectly) cast as Bruce Banner, Ed Norton (star of 'The Incredible Hulk') was poised to play the character. However, once negotiations broke down, the part was given to the former, but not before Joaquin Phoenix was considered to play the temperamental doctor.
Fact 2: Apparently, 'Avengers Assemble' did base itself on 'Transformers: Dark of the Moon', according to producer Kevin Feige. They allegedly wanted to outdo the film for its awesomeness and scale, and used it as a benchmark.
Fact 3: Once the project had gotten underway, Chris Evans (Captain America) sent a text message to Clark Gregg (Agent Coulson) simply saying 'Assemble'. Gregg professed to it being the greatest message he'd ever received.
Fact 4: Original TV Hulk star Lou Ferrigno has been involved in pretty much every Hulk adaptation in some shape or form. Here, he was the voice of the green giant, and has had cameos in both other recent movies based on the character.
Fact 5: According to Tom Hiddlestone, the codename for the film in its early stages was 'Group Hug'. Incidentally, the codename used when discussing its release into cinemas was 'Team Building'.
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Fact 6: In order to prepare for his role as Hawkeye, Jeremy Renner underwent extensive training from Olympic archers.
Fact 7: It was the first film to ever gross $200 million in its opening three days in the USA.
Fact 8: Mark Ruffalo claims to be the first actor to physically portray both Bruce Banner and The Hulk in the same movie, and he's right. Both Ed Norton and Erica Bana have both contributed with motion capture for the green beastie, but Ruffalo is the first, and only, to have performed live on set as The Hulk via motion capture.
Fact 9: 'Avengers Assemble' made $1.5 billion worldwide, which makes it the third highest grossing film in history, behind 'Titanic' ($2.2 billion) and 'Avatar' ($2.8 billion). It's also the biggest grossing superhero film ever, knocking 'The Dark Knight' ($1 billion) off top spot.
Fact 10: The ocean helicarrier was in fact filmed on a runway in the Albuquerque desert. It was apparently so hot that director Joss Whedon's trainers began to melt on the tarmac.
How many of these interesting facts were you already aware of? Do you have any more to share?