Incredible Hulk Preview (Great article to catch up on everything!)

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Nov 17, 2005
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The Incredible Hulk Preview

USA (2008),

Dr Bruce Banner's rampaging alter ego charges back to cinemas for this sort-of sequel to Ang Lee's Hulk starring and co-scripted by Edward Norton and directed by Louis Leterrier

Perhaps more than any other comic book super-character, over the years The Hulk has changed form, appearance and personality. Sure, he's best known for being big and green and violent, but since Dr Bruce Banner first got a dose of gamma radiation and gave birth to his alter ego ('The Incredible Hulk' #1 by writer Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Paul Reinam was published in May 1962), the character has taken on numerous forms - Grey Hulk, Savage Hulk, Hulks with or without Banner's mind intact and in control, various past and future Hulks and even a zombie Hulk.

Then there was the Lou Ferrigno body-paint Hulk from the 1978-1982 TV series and its spin-off telemovies. Also on TV were sundry animated incarnations. Then, with the rise in popularity of the CGI-driven big-screen comic book movie, the character appeared in 2003's Ang Lee-directed Hulk. So it's perfectly reasonable that yet another incarnation is set to appear in this new film, this time another CGI monster, but taking on traits of Edward Norton, not Eric Bana. It's a monumental case of multiple-personality disorder, but that's okay, just tell us about your mother.

2003's Hulk had a strong opening at the box office, but both audiences and critics were somewhat nonplussed by Lee and his collaborator James Schamus's film, which over-egged the lore, took ages to get to any 'Hulk smash' action and was somewhat ponderous, particularly compared to 2002's Spider-Man, the Sony/Marvel film Universal and Marvel were hoping to match in box office returns. The film wasn't a flop per se, but it certainly wasn't the hoped-for hit. Schamus, who produced and co-scripted the 2003 film, had been working on a sequel at the behest of Marvel head honcho and executive producer Avi Arad and there was talk of Ang Lee returning, but all this was reappraised in the light of the film's performance.

That reappraisal took a few years - then in July 2006 Marvel Studios announced it would be producing the second Hulk feature itself. Marvel Studios is a subsidiary of the Marvel parent company, Marvel Entertainment, and was set up to make its own films, rather than franchise the Marvel brand names. Universal retained an involvement as distributor.

The Incredible Hulk will be Marvel Studios' second project after Iron Man, and will be directed by Louis Leterrier, whose previous features were the Luc Besson-produced Transporter films and Unleashed. The script's written by Zak Penn, who was also involved with the second and third X-Men sequels and the abysmal Daredevil spin-off Elektra. Kevin Feige, Marvel Studios president of production, was producing alongside Arad, and Terminator veteran Gale Ann Hurd, who had also produced the Lee film. Marvel announced in November 2006 a plan to release the film in summer 2008, a few months after Iron Man. The intention? To make a movie that would be "less serious than the first one and more in tune with the comic book series."

Although the film is set to carry on the story established by the 2003 Hulk, the cast has been replaced completely. In May 2007, Norton's starring role was revealed. Bana said, "I think it's even better that they've got a new guy and better again that they've got someone of the calibre of Edward Norton. I can't wait to see it." He said, he'd thought of his job on the first film as "a one-off opportunity." According to Arad, Norton had been offered the role in the first film, "he actually turned down Hulk 1, so I guess second time around is more convincing."

Replacing Jennifer Connelly as love interest Betty Ross is Liv Tyler, while William Hurt steps into the role of her father, 'Thunderbolt' Ross, the US Army general determined to bring in the Hulk previously played by Sam Elliot. Also among the key cast members is Tim Roth, who's playing Emil Blonsky, aka The Abomination, a key foe from Hulk lore. The cast also includes Tim Blake Nelson as Samuel Sterns, a character who in the comics becomes The Leader, another Hulk foe. What's interesting here is that The Abomination and The Leader are both, like the Hulk, the results of gamma irradiation. In fact, the film manages to find space for Doc Samson, another character from the books who is transformed (though less radically) by gamma radiation. In the comics, Samson is a psychiatrist who was working with Banner on the Hulk issue, and whose own exposure to gamma radiation resulted in superhuman strength and green hair, but with his mind intact.

So what is that story? Although Feige has said, "This is Part 1, the beginning of a whole new Hulk saga," The Incredible Hulk does seem to begin approximately where Hulk left off, though five or so years later, with Bruce Banner on the run, desperately trying to find a cure for his condition. However, he can't escape the two Rosses - General Ross hunts him in the hope of exploiting him for military purposes (they track him down to where he's been living and working in Brazil), while Betty Ross, the women he loves, is always in his thoughts. The synopsis on the official site says, "As all three grapple with the secrets that led to The Hulk's creation, they are confronted with a monstrous new adversary known as The Abomination, whose destructive strength exceeds even The Hulk's own... One scientist must make an agonizing choice: accept a peaceful life as Bruce Banner or find heroism in the creature he holds inside - The Incredible Hulk."

So - serious big green monster versus big green monster action, with The Hulk scrapping with The Abomination in New York City. For those unacquainted with the comics, Blonsky was a KGB agent who became The Abomination after deliberately exposing himself to gamma radiation, though this has been updated for the film, where he's a soldier under General Ross who is mutated by a serum developed by the military. Unlike Banner, he can't transform back to human form, but he does retain his human mind. Sterns here seems to be a doctor who's trying to help Banner; he doesnt seem to take his Leader form for this story (maybe we'll see that in Hulk 3).

When Norton came on to star in April, he was also contracted to turn out a new draft of the script, as Penn was off promoting his directorial debut The Grand, as well as moving on to gigs on Paul WS Anderson's Spy Hunter and another Marvel project, the live action Avengers feature. Norton, who had done script work on other projects he'd starred in, continued tweaking the screenplay as the film went into production in July 2007, with its base in Toronto. Other key locations were the shanty of Tavares Bastos near Rio de Janeiro, where Banner had been trying to live under the radar, and New York City, where the climactic showdown takes place.

As for the Hulk himself, he's again going to be realised through CGI, but Leterrier did say in September 2006, "As an audience member I love to be confused and not know if it's CGI, animatronic, make-up," hinting at a possible combination of techniques. Norton will doubtless be doing performance capture for the CGI sequences. Affects company Rhythm & Hues, the company that won an effects Oscar for its work on Babe, has taken over from ILM to do the CGI work.

So how will the film differ from the first? Well, one thing the filmmakers were adamant about was that the Hulk remains a consistent size, and not grow larger when angered. Okay. And is it a sequel or not? "It's a hard question to answer. You have to be the judge of that when you see the film," is Leterrier's response. "I like the first film," he continues. "I just think I'm a maggot compared to Ang Lee. I'm not going to try to copy him; it would be an enormous failure. I'm going to do my version of a Hulk film." At ComicCon in July 2007, Norton explained his take on events: "I came into this and wrote the screenplay. I was a Marvel kid. I had subscriptions to a lot of Marvel comics. I loved the early incarnation of The Hulk and then the television show... I always felt like it was like one of those great contemporary myths. Comes right out of the tradition of Greek mythology, the notion of suppression of your inner demon. The initial idea of starting from scratch and reconceiving the story as a mythic saga was really appealing to me and I liked the lonely fugitive aspect of it." Hurd, meanwhile, said, ""We have a great character story to tell in the tradition of the Hunchback and Frankenstein. There is a terrific misunderstood character at the heart of it."

So it's not as serious as the first film, but it is mythic. There's a love story, but there are also huge, city-trashing fights. Oh, and Hulk is darker green, and stays the same size throughout. All directed by the guy who made Jason Statham a star. It really is hard to know what to expect with this one.
Patience. Something is just around the corner.:cwink:

I feel like Banner trying to get not too excited. I trying hard not to ask everyday "Is the trailer here yet?" :woot:

Next day... "Is the trailer here yet?" :csad:
Thanks for sharing.

I didn't mind the last, although I thought it went to over the top with Nick Nolte in the the end.

With someone of Norton's caliber on board for this new interpretation, it sounds very promising. :)
I just think I'm a maggot compared to Ang Lee! :joker:

But seriously it sounds great and I'm certainly looking forward to this movie.
hey were did that post go with the international preview?? the one with the pink hulk thing??? i worlked out what the pink thing is. its not abomination, and its not hulk from the movie. it must be an early pic of the sideshow toys hulk vs. spiderman satue. compare the pics:


i knew i'd seen that face before! so for every one worried this was abomination, at least we know its not. to bad, that face is perfect!:bh:
Good call DM666! I thought that looked familiar!

AD - NICE rundown... You should post that over the story on the Wikipedia page! I'm SO friggin' excited! Can't wait to see a trailer! This will be the movie we hoped the first one was!
Gee, one of those unnecessary changes for a movie.

True but they are trying to link all these new Marvel Studios movies together for an Avengers movie. There is stuff going around saying that there is a scene being filmed which is going to be in Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk. Plus the serum thing links Hulk with Captain America.
hey were did that post go with the international preview?? the one with the pink hulk thing??? i worlked out what the pink thing is. its not abomination, and its not hulk from the movie. it must be an early pic of the sideshow toys hulk vs. spiderman satue. compare the pics:


i knew i'd seen that face before! so for every one worried this was abomination, at least we know its not. to bad, that face is perfect!:bh:
i'm totally confused... i posted this exact thing yesterday but now my post is gone:huh:
The whole thread vanished for some reason. Must have been something in it the studio didn't like.
Why are people still referring to this as a sequel?

It's a restart!
The whole thread vanished for some reason. Must have been something in it the studio didn't like.

Probably cos the the article was false. Saying the movie had Talbot in it and some other stuff we know isn't in this movie.

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