#FlashbackFriday: In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it was Edward Norton who played the role of Hulk in the 2008 film The Incredible Hulk. Directed by Louis Leterrier, the film received a good response and Edward seemed like a perfect actor to play the character of Bruce Banner. However, in 2012, fans were surprised when they saw actor Mark Ruffalo playing the Green Goliath for the MCU. So what exactly happened? Read on.
To un unversed, Edward Norton was supposed to do 2 Hulk films with MCU. However, he was removed from the universe and the reason is quite shocking. A few years ago, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige released a press release that mentioned the reason for replacing Norton. Feige wrote that they had to remove him as they want an actor “who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members”.
In 2014, the Fight Club actor said he had experimented and experienced everything he wanted to from that kind of film. He didn’t want to be tied to any obligations that come with doing superhero films like Hulk. In an interview with The New York Times, he said that he wasn’t ready to give Marvel Studios the amount of time they expected of him for the film.
The Red Dragon actor shared that the reason he was not playing Hulk anymore because there were creative differences between him and MCU. The actor wanted Hulk’s story in the second film to have a dark tone like Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy. But Marvel wasn’t willing to do it.
Edward shared, “I loved the Hulk comics. I believed they were very mythic. And what Chris Nolan had done with Batman was going down a path that I aligned with: long, dark and serious. If there was ever a thing that I thought had that in it, it was the Hulk. It’s literally the Promethean myth.”
He added, “I laid out a two-film thing: The origin and then the idea of Hulk as the conscious dreamer, the guy who can handle the trip. And they were like, ‘That’s what we want!’ As it turned out, that wasn’t what they wanted. But I had a great time doing it. I got on great with Kevin Feige.”
The actor called Feige’s press release as cheap and agreed that he wanted more money than Marvel was offering him. Edward Norton said, “Yeah, which was cheap. It was brand defensiveness or something. Ultimately they weren’t going for long, dark and serious. But it doesn’t matter. We had positive discussions about going on with the films, and we looked at the amount of time that would’ve taken, and I wasn’t going to do that. I honestly would’ve wanted more money than they’d have wanted to pay me. But that’s not why I would’ve wanted to do another “Hulk” movie anyway. I went and did all the other things I wanted to do, and what Kevin Feige has done is probably one of the best executions of a business plan in the history of the entertainment industry. As a Disney shareholder, you should be on your feet for what they pulled off.”
Till date, fans have a discussion of how Edward would’ve pulled of Hulk. However, fans love Mark Ruffalo playing the giant green character too. So far, Mark has played the character in MCU films like The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Thor: Ragnarok, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame.
How was the #FlasbackFriday for today? We’ll share more such blast from the past every week!