Thursday, July 17, 2014

Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen Give More Details on Their Roles in Avengers: Age of Ultron

The past couple of days have given us a ton of great info on just how Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch will fit into 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron. Today EW has delivered yet again with more from Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen.

While the EW article goes out of the way to make sure the audience knows the Maximoff twins, along with The Vision (Paul Bettany), will begin the film as adversaries of the Avengers, it also points out that there could be a redemptive arc in the future of all three characters. Director Joss Whedon says of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch's introductory arc, "They’re on Team Ultron, which makes things really hard for the Avengers because all of sudden they’re dealing with powers that they’re not used to."

 This seems to be one of the reasons Whedon was so keen on adding the super-powered duo to the mix. He goes on to say, "With the [first] Avengers, everybody pretty much had the power of being able to punch somebody. And now we have a woman who can get inside your head and move objects, and a boy that can move faster than anything, and a robot [Ultron] who can self-replicate and is out of his mind. So all of sudden, it’s a darker, weirder, tougher world that they’re living in."

While we know that parts of the Maximoffs' comic back story will have to be left out (their connection to Magneto and mutations as the source of their powers) it seems that Whedon has kept their gypsy past a part of their history. Johnson, whose Quicksilver will be the second version of the character to hit the screen, explains a bit of the twins' story. “They’re gypsies in a way. They’re romani. They’re sort of like travelers,” said Johnson. With no ties to the world, naturally they couldn’t care less if it burns."

Though their motives are going to remain secret for the time being, Whedon says the pair will begin the film with a "fiery hate" for the Avengers. He also adds that their relationship, which has been strange at times in the comics, is an important part of who they are. Speaking about the tightly-knit siblings, Johnson went on to say, "When you look in the comic books, you see a lot of the time that she’s always sort of mothering him. He’s like the father figure and she’s like the mother figure.  Johnson added, "Emotionally, she can stabilize him, and he protects her physically, vice-versa. So they have this beautiful connection and it’s kind of them against the world.

Elizabeth Olsen's take on Scarlet Witch promises to be an interesting one. It seems that much of what makes up Wanda's powers will also be responsible for her slightly askew personality. Olsen explains, "The reason she’s so special is because she has such a vast amount of knowledge that she’s unable to learn how to control it. No one taught her how to control it properly. So it gets the best of her. It’s not that she’s mentally insane," continued Olsen, "it’s just that she’s just overly stimulated. And she can connect to this world and parallel worlds at the same time, and parallel times." The article does go on to say that despite the intense closeness the twins will share in the film that we shouldn't expect Whedon to take them down the incest route they followed once upon a time and we should all be happy for that!

The article also gives a bit more detail on Paul Bettany's synthezoid character, The Vision. While Whedon and Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige have been tight-lipped on how the MCU version of The Vision will come to be, Robert Downey, Jr. had no problems giving some insight into why Paul Bettany, who has been the voice of J.A.R.V.I.S., picked up the role of the Android Avenger. Needless to say, it's NOT by coincidence.

Things only happen arbitrarily in Kevin Feige’s Marvel universe by mistake, and I think he’s maybe made two mistakes and they weren’t really in the movies," said Downey. "They were more in like the easter eggs early on. Things that he didn’t have as much final say over but would nowadays.” When asked to clarify that it was not just coincidental that Bettany was playing both characters, Downey continued, "Yeah, I don’t think Kevin would let that happen."

While we haven't had the briefest glimpse of Bettany's Vision, we do know that he was on set for a flashback scene featuring Captain America and Agent Carter. Given that it's doubtful there will be serious time travel featured in Avengers: Age of Ultron (sorry Roger Wardell), Bettany's appearance in the scene creates some questions that need answering. One possible answer could be that, for the purposes of the 1940s scene, Bettany could also be playing Jim Hammond, the original Human Torch whose body the Vision took for his own in the comics and a member of Captain America's Invaders. Thanks to Captain America: The First Avenger, we know that Jim Hammond exists in the MCU so while tis is by no means a certainty, it is a possibility we have to entertain for the time being. 

I'd assume that we'll hear much more about the film, including some descriptions of footage, in the next couple of weeks with San Diego Comic Con 2014 just around the corner!