By this weekend we will certainly know a great deal more about Phase 3 and the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Headed into SDCC '13 we've been teased with bits and pieces of information which do little more than give people like me reason to speculate wildly and, of course, assume that my speculations are correct. Let the rumor mill begin.
The first, and, if it turns out to be true down the road, most exciting bit of news is the Marvel may just have Joseph Gordon-Levitt on their radar for the role of Stephen Strange. After hearing recently that Doctor Strange, the Sorcerer Supreme of the Marvel Universe, will likely be the focal point of Marvel's Cinematic Universe in Phase 3 and beyond, we knew that the actor to fill the role of Strange would have to be a big talent, if not a big name and be young enough to hold down the role for around 10 years. Well JGL certainly fits all those criteria. Levitt is a very solid actor who has done some varied roles over the years. His turn in Looper was terrific and I actually quite liked his role in Premium Rush. Needless to say, if this gets to the stage where Levitt is in talks and eventually lands the role, this is another plus-plus casting on Marvel's part.
My next favorite piece of news concerns the future of the Hulk on film. It's been speculated that Marvel will turn to their Marvel Now title, The Indestructible Hulk, for cinematic inspiration. This was news that I loved hearing simply because less than a week ago, after having read the first 3 issues of the title via Marvel Unlimited, I thought that it would be a genius approach to having Mark Ruffalo be involved in the movies as more than just CGI assistance. If you haven't read Mark Waid's Indestructible Hulk title, well you should, but it begins with Bruce Banner approaching SHIELD director Maria Hill with a proposition that changes EVERYTHING we know about the Banner/Hulk story. Banner, whose intellecutal ego is wounded by the events of AvX, wants to the Hulk to work as an Agent of Shield in a "point him in the right direction" kinda way, while he works in SHIELD labs solving worldwide issues as a way to prove his worth as a genius-scientist and to right his wrongs as the Hulk. If this truly is where Marvel is headed, I love it. Great minds think alike.
What do you do with a chin like Aaron Eckhart's? Apparently Marvel may just have an idea. This is obviously much more speculative and there isn't much to go on, but dammit would that chin look good protruding out of Blackbolt's mask.
Finally comes word from Saoirse Ronan is not going to be playing Wanda Maximoff in the Avengers sequel. And....good. I expect we will find out soon enough who will be playing the Maximoffs, though I did quite like the idea of Aaron Johnson as Quicksilver, Ronan doesn't do much for me as the Scarlet Witch.
That's a round-up heading into SDCC...I know that come Sunday/Monday our brains will likely be bursting with new info and I'll be back to splatter mine here.