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After we reported yesterday the news that Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron opened to $9.5 million, updated figures have come in following its roll out in various other international markets on Thursday, including the UK, and the sequel has continued to break box-office records across the globe.
As of close of business last night, the comic book sequel had reached an estimated $44.8 million from 26 markets, and is now No.1 in all of them. In the UK, it opened higher than both Iron Man 3 and The Avengers by 54% and 40% respectively, as well as grabbing a 84% market share across UK IMAX cinemas.
In Korea, it had the highest Thursday opening day ever, with an opening 173% higher than the first film, and 54% over Iron Man 2. Elsewhere, in Australia the film opened no.1 with a 79% market share and also had huge openings in Germany and Russia, with similarly large market shares and »
- Scott J. Davis
[With Avengers: Age of Ultron opening next Friday, I’m taking a look back at the Marvel Cinematic Universe. These articles do not contain spoilers for unreleased Marvel movies. If you know any spoilers about the unreleased Marvel movies, please do not post them in the comments section.] Iron Man 2 may have stumbled badly, but Marvel didn’t fall. Instead, it took an important step forward with Thor, a movie that tries to be both cautious and ambitious in taking viewers on their biggest leap forward. In 2011, over a decade after X-Men, there was still a level of apprehension with superhero movies. Marvel in particular needed to figure out how to take a completely different superhero and make him live in the same world as another franchise. The plan for The Avengers was truly in motion, and Thor needed to show that the worlds could be connected yet distinct. The unique setting was also a challenge because Thor is a magical space alien. He comes from a different galaxy (or “realm”) and he’s a Norse god. He couldn’t be further away from any other superhero, but he needed to conceivably live in the same universe »
- Matt Goldberg
Avengers: Age of Ultron may be grabbing all the headlines, but Marvel Studios has given us a sneak peek at its next offering by releasing the first clip from Ant-Man, which sees Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang discovering the Ant-Man suit. Take a look below…
The next evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings a founding member of The Avengers to the big screen for the first time with Marvel Studios’ Ant-Man. Armed with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, master thief Scott Lang (Paul Rudd, Anchorman 2) must embrace his inner-hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas, Wall Street), protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a heist that will save the world. »
- Gary Collinson
During a promotional interview with Buzzfeed ahead of the release of Avengers: Age of Ultron [read our spoiler free ★★★★★ review here], Joss Whedon got onto the topic of Marvel’s next movie Ant-Man, and more specifically Edgar Wright’s original screenplay for the miniature superhero, which he calls “the best script that Marvel ever had.”
“I don’t get it. I thought the script was not only the best script that Marvel had ever had, but the most Marvel script I’d read. I had no interest in Ant-Man. [Then] I read the script, and was like, Of course! This is so good! It reminded me of the books when I read them. Irreverent and funny and could make what was small large, and vice versa. I don’t know where things went wrong. But I was very sad. Because I thought, This is a no-brainer. This is Marvel getting it exactly right. Whatever dissonance that came, »
- Gary Collinson
[With Avengers: Age of Ultron opening next Friday, I’m taking a look back at the Marvel Cinematic Universe. These articles do not contain spoilers for unreleased Marvel movies. If you know any spoilers about the unreleased Marvel movies, please do not post them in the comments section.] The Incredible Hulk showed that the Marvel Cinematic Universe needed serious construction, but it didn’t have any of the pieces. Iron Man 2 presents the mess of a studio trying to figure out how to build a universe while also creating a self-contained film that provides its protagonist a strong arc and character development. The movie does neither particularly well, although that didn’t seem to matter as it raked in over $650 million worldwide and landed as the 3rd highest-grossing film (domestically) for 2010. People wanted more of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), they wanted more Marvel flavor, and the studio struggled with both. What follows will mostly sound like a long screed against Iron Man 2, but if you stick with it to the end, I promise I will explain its greatest merits. Iron Man 2 isn’t a good film. It’s watchable, but it’s a wreck »
- Matt Goldberg
A Rush In Both Meanings Of The Word Marvel Studios
You know how in most blockbusters you look at your watch and groan that there’s still an hour of the movie left? With Avengers: Age Of Ultron that’s completely reversed; you look at your watch with an hour to go and simply can’t comprehend how they’ll fit everything in before the credits.
Joss Whedon’s second (and likely final) Avengers movie moves at a pace that would even tire out new hero Quicksilver. One minute he’s homaging that incredible singular shot from the first film, the next titular villain Ultron is developed and plotting some evil scheme, the next Iron Man and Hulk are duking it out, and then you’re sat waiting for the mid-credits scene.
Now, in general, fast paced blockbusters are good, a welcome change from a sizeable chunk of Hollywood’s rote, »
- Alex Leadbeater
When Joss Whedon took the job as director of "The Avengers," he had a specific challenge to overcome. Even after the success of the individual movies featuring Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America, it seemed like a nearly impossible task, juggling so many giant personalities in one coherent story. Now the challenge is very different for him as writer/director, because he's following up one of the biggest films of all time, and he's also laying groundwork for the entire next phase of movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The last time a director found himself in a similar position with Marvel was Jon Favreau on "Iron Man 2," and it's interesting to see the ways Whedon has responded differently, and the ways in which he's fallen into some of the same traps. Make no mistake… "Avengers: Age Of Ultron" is both a better film and a better sequel than "Iron Man 2, »
- Drew McWeeny
Over the course of film history, we've seen plenty of long-time actors step behind the camera to take up their directorial ambitions. Clint Eastwood did it. Mel Gibson did it. George Clooney did it. What do these three have in commonc Well, for starters, they are all men, so there's that. Further, they are all white, but more on that later. More to the point of the article, these men all eased into their directorial careers by starring in their respective debuts, using their presence on screen to help market their talents off it. And with his feature directorial effort The Water Diviner, which hits limited theaters this week, Russell Crowe is just the most recent addition to a growing list of actors who have decided to try their hand behind the camera. Like Eastwood, Gibson, and Clooney before him, the Best Actor winner stars in his first feature as director, »
- Jordan Benesh
This review is spoiler-free. The closest we get to a spoiler is hinting at something in the last act, but we don't tell you what it is. However, we wanted to give you that information up front, so you can decide whether to read on...
Three years ago, the first Avengers movie smashed everything from audience expectations to box office records as it brought the first phase of the Marvel cinematic universe to an unprecedented, near-faultless conclusion. We gave it an undisputed five stars. More than that, we loved it. We still do. It's the ultimate expression of its genre: a superhero team-up movie that gives you everything you want and then a little bit more. At the time the credits rolled, it seemed unthinkable that a follow-up would ever come close to matching it. »
Any fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe knows that the movies being incredibly entertaining blockbusters that confidently balance comic book logic and modern cinematic realism, all mixed with an overriding sense of fun, is just one part of the series’ appeal. What’s really turned the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the dominant force of modern cinema – a mainstream, studio mandated mega-franchise completely adored by geeks – is the sheer attention to detail in realising the unprecedented shared universe.
Ever since Iron Man in 2008, hidden in-jokes and more involved Easter eggs have become part-and-parcel of an McU movies, creating a magic formula many other series are desperate to imitate. Regular audiences can pick up on the numerous references to Iron Man in a Captain America movie, while more obsessively inclined fans can pour over all the background details that hint at the movies set to come over the next decade. »
- Alex Leadbeater
The next evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings a founding member of The Avengers to the big screen for the first time with Marvel Studios’ Ant-Man. Armed with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, master thief Scott Lang (Paul Rudd, Anchorman 2) must embrace his inner-hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas, Wall Street), protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.
- Gary Collinson
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 has a production codename. As revealed by Production Weekly, it is Guardians 3000. While it isn't know if this will remain as the official title of the movie, it certainly has kicked up a lot of speculation amongst fans. What could the title possibly mean, and who is it in reference too?
It turns out that the title Guardians 3000 is quite relevant to the Marvel comic books upon which Guardians of the Galaxy is based. While it connects to the ongoing mythos, there's also the fact that Marvel currently has a standalone Guardians 3000 comic book series separate from their main Guardians of the Galaxy franchise. It showcases the 'original' members of the interstellar superheroes. Does this mean we might see anyone from Adam Warlock, Galactus, Nova, Odin, Quasar, Rick Jones, the Silver Surfer and/or The Watcher in the sequel? We have no idea, but anything is possible! »
It's hard to believe it now, but a decade ago the Marvel Cinematic Universe was merely a twinkle in Kevin Feige's eye. Today, McU offerings are blockbuster staples, with the likes of Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and more providing film fans with thundering entertainment and a connected universe culminating in the Avengers movies.
With Age of Ultron on the horizon, we've gone back through the 10 Marvel films to-date to rank them all from worst to best. Read on to find out our verdict, then join the discussion in the comments below.
10. Iron Man 2 (2010)
If Iron Man was a savvy exercise in kick-starting a shared cinematic universe, then its sequel brought everything crashing back down with a sharp, painful thud. Overstuffed with new characters, multiple plot strands and far-too-much in the way of Avengers set-up, Iron Man 2 is a step down from its predecessor in practically every way. »
Gary Collinson on the 2015 superhero box office showdown…
Revisiting Last Year’S Predictions
Before we turn our attention to this year’s line-up of superhero movies, we’ll start as always by casting our eye back twelve months to last year’s predictions, as Marvel continued the build to Avengers: Age of Ultron with Captain America: The Winter Soldier as well as launching the cosmic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Guardians of the Galaxy, Fox brought together its two X-Men timelines for X-Men: Days of Future Past, Sony killed the Spider-Man franchise (again) with The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
Last Year’s Prediction - “As for the biggest earner of the year, I can’t look past The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and I expect the sequel to pull in around $700 million, followed by Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men: Days of Future Past with around $550 – $600 million apiece (if »
- Gary Collinson
One of the big shock moments of Joss Whedon's 2012 Avengers movie was the death of the beloved Agent Coulson, played by Clark Gregg. It was a dark moment that felt like it really counted for a lot in the Marvel cinematic universe. Which is why it felt like a little bit of a cheat when the character was resurrected - with Gregg playing him - for the Agents Of Shield TV show.
In a new interview with Mental Floss, Joss Whedon admits that he shares a little bit of the frustration over the fact that Coulson returned.
"The Coulson thing was, I think, a little anomalous just because that really came from the television division, which is sort of considered to be its »
The press tour for Avengers: Age Of Ultron - which arrives in UK cinemas a week today (the film, not the press tour) - continues, and Scarlett Johansson is the latest to be chatting about Marvel projects. In particular, she was asked by Collider as to the possibility of a solo movie for Black Widow, the role she first originated in the Marvel cinematic universe way back in Iron Man 2.
"I've spoken to Kevin [Feige] about it", she confirmed. "I mean, of course, of course, we've had that conversation before, and It hink Kevin would also like to see a standalone film. I think I can speak for him and say that", she said.
"That's all, really", she noted though. "Right now I think this character »
Scarlett Johansson made her debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe five years ago by taking on the role of Natasha Romanoff, a.k.a. Black Widow in 2010's Iron Man 2. Since then, she has quickly become a fan favorite, appearing in Marvel's The Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and next month's Avengers: Age of Ultron. There has been talk over the years about a potential Black Widow stand alone movie, but when Marvel announced their massive nine-movie Phase Three slate back in October, a Black Widow movie was nowhere to be found. While promoting Avengers: Age of Ultron last weekend, Scarlett Johansson revealed that she has actually discussed a series of Black Widow movies with producer Kevin Feige.
"I've spoken to Kevin about it. I mean, of course, of course we've had that conversation before, and I think Kevin would also like to see a standalone film. I »
Like many of you, I watched the trailer for Marvel’s Ant-Man this week. I’ve been curious about the film every since Edgar Wright was first attached to the property. And I’ve been morbidly curious ever since he departed and was replaced by Peyton Reed. Because who didn’t watch Down With Love and think ‘I want to see what this guy would do with a superhero’?
1. The sarcastic, well meaning hero not living up to his potential
We’ve seen this before. Iron Man excelled because it gave us a likable, authority challenging protagonist who was reluctant to assume the role of a hero. Eventually »
- Anghus Houvouras
Out of all the Avengers Marvel has mined from its vast catalog of characters, there’s one in particular whose vocal fanbase has decried the comic studio. Why? For not providing her with her own solo movie, that’s why!
Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow (aka Natasha Romanoff) was introduced in Iron Man 2 as Stark’s eye candy assistant before she unleashed her true potential on the hallway of Goons at the Hammer factory. Her Romanoff resume is steadily increasing, but not on account of her own standalone ventures. She’s appeared in Iron Man and Captain America’s solo pics, and kicked major Chitauri butt with them in The Avengers. So, will she ever get her own movie?
In another of Collider’s interviews with the Avengers, Johansson reveals that the idea of a Black Widow movie isn’t as far from Marvel’s minds as we might »
- Gem Seddon
There are over twenty films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, if we count the ones we've yet to see in addition to Marvel's Phase Three installments, but a solo Black Widow film starring Scarlett Johansson is not among them. While her character certainly hasn't been absent from the Marvel films, having appeared in Iron Man 2, The Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and appearances in the upcoming Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War, fans »
- Kevin Fraser
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