Scarlett Johansson was pregnant during filming, so many of her scenes were scheduled early in filming, before she began to show. To help hide her pregnancy later in filming, three stunt doubles were hired. This caused a lot of confusion amongst the other actors since, according to them, all of the stunt women looked very similar to Johansson. Chris Evans stated that it got to the point where he would say hello, and start a conversation with one of them, only to realize midway, that the person he was talking to wasn't Johansson. Ultimately, some scenes used CGI to hide Johansson's belly.
Because Ultron was eight to nine feet tall, the five-foot ten-inch James Spader had to wear an antenna-like contraption made out of a thick piece of wire, with two red balls attached to the top, that went up his entire back, and three feet above his head. This was done, so that the cast members that shared scenes with him, would have a reference point for where his eyes would be. The two red balls represented the placement of Ultron's eyes. Elizabeth Olsen stated that this was actually distracting, because Spader would be giving an intense performance, and out of instinct, she would look at him, rather than the balls representing his eyes. Much to everyone's amusement, whenever this happened, Aaron Taylor-Johnson would yell, "Red balls! Look at his balls, Lizzie!" at her in order to get her to look in the right direction.
Thanos was considered to be the next villain, but Joss Whedon decided against him, in favor of Ultron: "We have to stay grounded. It's part of what makes the Marvel Universe click, their relationship to the real world. Thanos is not out of the mix, but Thanos was never meant to be the next villain. He's always been the overlord of villainy and darkness." Instead, Thanos is scheduled to appear in Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Untitled Avengers Movie (2019).
Quicksilver's role in the film sparked wide discussion over his place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The character had been discussed previously as a potential character in both X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) and The Avengers (2012), but legal complexities resulted in his absence from both. But, in May 2013 Marvel Studios and 20th Century Fox announced a resolution to such issues, and that Quicksilver would appear in Age of Ultron, but only under specific parameters: no reference to his relations to the X-Men or Magneto (the character's father), and no reference to Quicksilver's membership in the Avengers could be made vice-versa. This went so far, that the character couldn't be referred to as a "mutant" in any Marvel film. Additionally, other debates between Fox and Marvel, led to two different versions of the same character, both of which are presented in two separate franchises.
It took Joss Whedon a year to convince Aaron Taylor-Johnson to accept the role of Quicksilver. Johnson was concerned over the intensity of the Marvel contracts, the time constraints, and the fact that it was going to be such a large cast. Even after he accepted the role, he was still nervous, but was comforted after he learned that his friend, and Godzilla (2014) co-star, Elizabeth Olsen, would be playing his sister, and would be his filming partner throughout most of the movie.
Joss Whedon cast Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, because he thought their powers would be cool to use in a film: "Their powers are very visually interesting. One of the problems I had on the first one, was everybody basically had punchy powers. Quicksilver's got super-speed, Scarlet Witch can weave spells, and a little telekinesis, get inside your head. That's good stuff they can do, that will help keep it fresh."
Joss Whedon claimed that juggling all the characters in the film was "a nightmare": "They're very disparate characters. The joy of the Avengers is they really don't belong in the same room. It's not like the X-Men, who are all tortured by the same thing, and have similar costumes. These guys are just all over the place, and so it's tough." He was so exhausted with working on this film, that he decided not to direct the sequels Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Untitled Avengers Movie (2019).
Industrial Light & Magic developed a new motion-capture system for the film, called "Muse", to better capture the actor's facial and body movements, and combine different takes of the same performance, with regards to Ultron and the Hulk. Andy Serkis (who also has the on-screen role of Ulysses Klaus) was brought on-board to contribute towards Muse's design and improvement. One major benefit of this work for the actor, was that in this film, Mark Ruffalo was able to do some of his Mo-Cap performance alongside his fellow cast members on-set, and on-location, as opposed to, in the first films, where he was working separately from the others. It furthermore reduced the amount of specific facial Mo-Cap sections, as they now were able to do both body and face simultaneously. (Source: The Graham Norton Show interview).
When Tony Stark goes to upload his new A.I. partner, F.R.I.D.A.Y. There is another drive labeled JOCASTA. JOCASTA, in the comics, was an A.I. created by Ultron, and her mind and body were modeled after Janet Van Dyne (The Wasp). She would eventually turn against Ultron, and join the Avengers.
According to Mark Ruffalo, his portrayal of the Hulk is inspired by Peter David's Hulk comics, where the Hulk and Bruce Banner were a split personality case: "There's a very cool thing happening in the film: Hulk is as afraid of Banner, as Banner is afraid of Hulk. Both of these guys are obviously the same guy, and they have to come to peace somehow with each other, and this confrontation is building across this film."
"Marvel Ultimates" comic is famous for featuring a controversial incestuous storyline between Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. According to Elizabeth Olsen, while this particular aspect would not be overtly present in the film, she and Aaron Taylor-Johnson "played around" with certain parts of it: "Every time you see an image of them, they're always holding each other's hand and looking over each other's shoulder. They're always so close, it's almost uncomfortable. Aaron and I have been playing a little bit with those kinds of images just for ourselves."
James Spader described Ultron as self-absorbed and immature: "He sees the world from a very strange, biblical point of view, because he's brand new, he's very young. He's immature, and yet has knowledge of comprehensive, broad history and precedent, and he has created in a very short period of time, a rather skewed worldview."
Hugh Jackman, who plays Wolverine in the X-Men films, has expressed an interest to play Wolverine in an Avengers sequel, despite the rights issues between Marvel and Fox over the X-Men. Jackman stated that he wanted to see Wolverine battle Iron Man. Rumors have spread recently, however, that Fox and Marvel met to discuss an unknown deal. This could potentially involve an agreement, similar to that between Sony and Marvel, which gives Marvel the ability to include Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Wolverine first appeared in the comics, as an enemy of the Hulk. During the Avengers vs. X-men comic book event, he was rivaled with Captain America.
The scene where Ultron commands his drones to fly down and latch themselves onto the truck in Seoul, took 360 days to complete. It was handled by only one animator, who upon completion of the scene, received a party, and a bottle of champagne for his efforts.
The first trailer was intended to be released after the October 28, 2014 episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013) . A low-quality version of the trailer leaked online on October 22, 2014. In response, Marvel published the HD version of the first trailer on its official YouTube channel the same day. Marvel's official Twitter account announced the official trailer with a tongue-in cheek statement blaming Marvel's villainous organization HYDRA for the leak.
Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth have stated in separate interviews that Joss Whedon initially hadn't told them the arc of the plot, with Evans claiming that he didn't even know the title of the film until the official announcement at Comic-Con. Additionally, Hemsworth and Cobie Smulders (Maria Hill) have both admitted to not knowing who Ultron is.
Lou Ferrigno contributed to the voice of the Hulk in this film. He has played the Hulk in almost every live-action version since 1978: he played the Hulk in The Incredible Hulk (1978), and its subsequent three television specials, and he voiced the Hulk in the big-screen The Incredible Hulk (2008), in which he also played security guard. He also played a security guard in Hulk (2003). He has also voiced the Hulk in various animated productions.
Bruce Banner's creation that houses the extra Hulkbuster parts, Veronica, is named that, as an in-joke, based on the Archie comics. Archie Andrews is always torn between the two women that love him, Betty and Veronica. Banner already had a girlfriend, Betty Ross, so this armor was named Veronica, as a contrast to Banner's alternate personality, the Hulk.
James Spader was originally just going to be Ultron's voice, but he told the filmmakers that for a main character, he deserved to do more than provide a voice, and so he took on performing Ultron through motion-capture.
Stan Lee's cameo as a War Veteran, at the farewell party for Thor, is a sly inside joke, since Lee did actually join the Army, but never went into battle. Lee's experience writing for Timely Comics (before it became Marvel) was put to use instead, for the Army's medical division, thinking up slogans for posters about preventing the spread of venereal diseases that were drawn by Theodore Geisel a.k.a. Dr. Seuss.
In comics, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are born mutants. In this movie, they got their powers due to experimentation of HYDRA on them. This change has to do with the fact that 20th Century Fox holds the rights to the X-Men films, and the whole mutant concept. Therefore this change was intended to disassociate the film from the X-Men film franchise, to avoid legal issues.
When Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron Taylor-Johnson learned that their roles Wanda and Pietro Maximoff would be based on their "Marvel Ultimates" version, they both read and studied every single issue, in order to prepare for the role.
The film was named after a 2013 Marvel comic series "Age of Ultron". However, Kevin Feige explained that that particular comic would not be used as a storyline: "We came up with a few titles, but every month a new comic book appears, and 'Age Of Ultron' is a great title. We had a few other 'Of Ultrons', but that was the best one. So we're borrowing that title, but taking storylines from decades of Avengers storylines."
Aaron Taylor-Johnson described his approach to Quicksilver as inspired by the "Marvel Ultimates" comic: "He and his sister have been abandoned by their parents, and they grew up in Eastern Europe defending, and looking out for themselves, and each other. His sister really is his guidance, emotionally she's the one who looks after him, and vice-versa. He's very overprotective physically, he doesn't want anyone touching her."
Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron Taylor-Johnson consulted each other, before accepting the roles of Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. The two became friends while filming Godzilla (2014), and as soon as they found out that both had offers, they called each other to check if the other was doing it, before signing on.
Aaron Taylor-Johnson's favorite superhero amongst the Avengers is Chris Hemsworth. Taylor-Johnson was impressed by Hemsworth, saying, "The only one who has an otherworldly superhero physique is Hemsworth. The size of his arms, is like the size of my thighs. Just to be an actor and transform your physique and body to that level, he's essentially a god. Everyone in the cast is charming and brilliant, but you look around the room and you go 'that guy is definitely the superhero.'"
Quicksilver's running visual effects were created by first filming with an ultra-high-speed camera, and then filming Aaron Taylor-Johnson running in the same scene at regular speed, and then digitally splicing the two scenes together.
According to Aaron Taylor-Johnson, no one realized that no plans for a wrap-party had been made, until the last day of filming. As a result, Joss Whedon gathered the cast at the end of the day, and made them walk around the small Italian town, in which they were filming, while it snowed heavily, until he found an appropriate place for a party. They finally found a small club, and the cast, along with Whedon, danced until four in the morning.
Joss Whedon described this film as "Smaller. More personal. More painful. The next thing that should happen to these characters, and not just a rehash of what worked the first time. A theme that is completely fresh, and organic to itself."
In an interview with Empire magazine, Joss Whedon said that he wanted to lengthen the scenes with Thor at the pool, and his vision, but executives issued an ultimatum, stating that it could be lengthened, but it would be in place of Hawkeye's farm scenes. Whedon chose to keep the farm scenes.
At some point, the Abomination (the villain from The Incredible Hulk (2008)) was going to be an antagonist in the film, or secondary villain, and Tim Roth would have reprised his role from that film. However, the Abomination was written out of the film.
Elizabeth Olsen described the Scarlet Witch as unstable: "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, it's just that she's just overly-stimulated, and she can connect to this world, and parallel worlds, at the same time."
The Hulkbuster armor has three arc reactors on the front: one on the chest, and one on each knee. Six on the back: four on the back, and one on each calf. Excluding the arc reactor of the suit worn underneath the Hulkbuster, it's safe to say, that it takes nine arc reactors just to power the gargantuan suit.
Joss Whedon described Ultron as a perfect villain for the Avengers: "He's got a bee in his bonnet, he's always trying to destroy the Avengers! He's not a happy guy, which means he's an interesting guy. He's got pain."
This is the first time in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that Thor appears in a movie without Loki. Tom Hiddleston did film a scene, reprising Loki, but it was ultimately cut from the final version, as Joss Whedon felt it "didn't play" well with the film as a whole.
Approximately two hundred German small town movie theaters boycotted the film upon its release, after Disney announced that they demanded fifty-three percent of ticket sales, as movie rent, without taking into account the smaller sizes of small town venues.
When Scarlet Witch tries to mind control Hawkeye, he neutralizes her and quips: "I tried the mind control thing. Not a fan!" This is a reference to Jeremy Renner being openly displeased with his character being mind controlled by Loki during most of The Avengers (2012).
Although name checked for the first time, and playing a significant part in the plot, this actually marks the second time the fictional kingdom of Wakanda appears in a Marvel movie. Wakanda was referred to in Iron Man 2 (2010), where it can be seen as one of the hot spots on Nick Fury's map. In the comics, Wakanda is ruled by T'Challa, better known as Black Panther (2018), who made his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in Captain America: Civil War (2016).
Joss Whedon wanted to get a "number of different looks and textures and moods" to give the film a different and fresh aesthetic from its predecessor, so he shot in different locations around the world, including South Africa, England, Italy, and South Korea.
In the comics, Lieutenant Colonel James Rhodes (War Machine) has been in three different teams of Avengers: the main Avengers, the West Coast Avengers (led by Hawkeye), and the Secret Avengers (led by Captain America). Here, all three Avengers members appear in the same team.
In the trailer presented at Comic-Con 2013, the dialogue for Iron Man, Captain America, Bruce Banner, Nick Fury, and Maria Hill was taken from The Avengers (2012) except Thor's, which came from a deleted scene of Thor: The Dark World (2013).
When Tony Stark tries to lift Thor's Hammer, he jokes saying "I'm re-instituting Primae Noctis". Primae Noctis was, allegedly, a law in late Medieval Europe, by which a feudal Lord could claim the "first night" (implying the night subsequent to her wedding) with any bride in his dominion, in order to have sexual relations with her. This practice was depicted in Braveheart (1995).
The general attire of Pietro and Wanda Maximoff in this film is a tribute to their appearance in X-Men: Evolution (2000), where Pietro had on blue jeans and sports shirts, and Wanda had on a black dress and red coat.
Joss Whedon was inspired by The Godfather: Part II (1974): "It's a very different movie from the first film and a ton has happened in-between, but you don't need any information. It's there in the film about what's happened since, what's different, and why is this a different film; why is it a different kind of structure, and why is it darker. It's all there, you're in the vernacular of the first movie and you're just ready to pick up in this new place, and hopefully that's what will happen with my movie. "
In an early script, Ultron was created by the government to eliminate the need of the Avengers, but Ultron turns on its creators, and the Avengers again team up to stop him. However, this draft was changed.
Joss Whedon had said that while directing this movie was exhausting, he would still be interested in directing other superhero films in the future, even discussing Spider-Man and Batman as interesting projects to take on.
According to Visual Effects Supervisor Ben Snow, the Hulk was remodelled, to bear a closer resemblance to Mark Ruffalo (Bruce Banner). This was accomplished by programming a system of muscles over Ruffalo's existing muscles: "I don't want to come in and see a Hulk without muscles, properly deforming. When you flex a muscle, it retains volume - it can get firmer, its shape will change. We were able to leverage the research so that, in an action, like a bending arm, the muscle doesn't just squash, it actually changes shape. We ended up moving up towards a lot more physical, and correct thing, where you had a three-dimensional mesh, driving a skin mesh, that would slide in two dimensions, and then there was a soft spring mechanism attaching those."
Tony Stark's line "It's been a really long day-like, Eugene O'Neill long" is a reference to O'Neill's play "Long Day's Journey Into Night", which centers on a dysfunctional family. Similarly, the line is spoken during the Avengers' lowest ebb.
During his first meeting with the Maximoffs, Ultron is seen wearing a crimson cloth like a cloak with a hood. In his first appearance (Avengers #54 1968), he wore one throughout the comic, and had the alias of the Crimson Cowl.
On this film, Production Designer Charles Wood, and his team, built an enormous, new Avengers Tower set, that is the largest set ever built for a Marvel film. Much of the movie takes place there, on its many different levels. A large expanse of glass, opens the view to New York City, and one can also see a hangar for the Quinjet. The multiple environments are all connected, with the ability to move from downstairs to upstairs and vice-versa.
According to Visual Effects Supervisor Paul Butterworth, J.A.R.V.I.S.' hologram design is based on an orrerry, a clockwork device. Ultron's hologram was designed to be more complex and unstable: "He has multiple shells of biotechnology and weird faceted spheres, that crease and move around and fold. Sometimes it can be like a rhomboid, sometimes a sphere."
Tony Stark says that the goal for the Ultron program is to create peace, or as he puts it: "peace in our time." When the British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain returned to London after the 1938 negotiations with Adolf Hitler in Munich, he claimed that the outcome would be "peace for our time". This is often assumed to be a promise which (just like the Ultron program) failed miserably, since World War II broke-out less than a year later. However, this overlooks how the agreement bought vital extra time for Britain to build up its arms industry, with aircraft factories already being moved from the south and east coasts to the featureless Midlands Plain, which could not be readily navigated by German bombers without radar.
As the Vision, Paul Bettany wore a scalp and head prosthetic, that was attached from his forehead around the ears, down to his neck and shoulders, along with a small chin piece, and then had his face and neck airbrushed in cranberry-purple.
The Avengers tower scene in the trailer, was teased in the first Avengers movie, but revealed in an easter egg during a scene in Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014). When the Helicarriers are activated, before Rogers shuts them down, you can see the finished Avengers tower, with a picture of Tony Stark.
Dr. List shows up in a scene at the beginning of the movie, when the HYDRA Base is being assaulted by the Avengers. He is also currently playing the same character in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013). He also previously appeared in the mid-credits scene of Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014).
Carol Danvers, a.k.a. Captain Marvel, and Peter Parker, a.k.a. Spider-Man, were rumored to make appearances toward the end of the film. Captain Marvel was in an original draft of the script. Joss Whedon later admitted he wanted to include the two. Spider-Man finally joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the next installment Captain America: Civil War (2016). Captain Marvel will make her appearance in Avengers: Infinity War (2018).
According to Visual Effects Supervisor Christopher Townsend, whenever Scarlet Witch uses her power, either a star or a circle can be seen. This is an homage to the Hex bolts that she has in the Marvel comics, which were in the form of geometric shapes.
Large portions of the film were shot at Hendon Police Training College in North London. The bronze statue visible in the town square, is that of Sir Robert Peele, founder of the modern police force (and the reason police officers are know as "Bobbies" and "Peelers") which could not be removed for filming. Instead, it was redressed to appear as Vladimir Lenin.
In the comics, Helen Cho is the mother of Amadeus Cho, a.k.a. Mastermind Excello, the seventh smartest man in the world. Marvel recently announced that Amadeus Cho will be the new Hulk (Totally Awesome Hulk) starting in December 2015.
Stan Lee, who co-created The Avengers, plays the World War II Veteran, who insists on trying Thor's drink, countering Thor's protest that it isn't safe with: "Nor was Omaha Beach!", referencing the D-Day landings in France on June 6, 1944. Born in 1922, Lee did in fact serve in the Army during World War II, though only in America. Jack Kirby, who co-created both The Avengers and Captain America, served in Europe during World War II, and did land on Omaha Beach, though over two months after D-Day. He served as an infantry scout for the Allied Forces, drawing reconnaissance maps and pictures. When the war ended, they both returned to their jobs creating comics. Kirby died in 1994.
Besides appearing in the scene at the Avengers tower, where the Avengers attempted to lift Mjolnir, War Machine (Colonel James Rhodes) did not make any appearance in any trailers until the eighteenth television spot. Here, he is distinctly lacking his Iron Patriot color scheme, which was most likely scrapped between the events of Iron Man Three (2013) and Age of Ultron. However, he still sports the same heads-up display to Iron Patriot as seen in Iron Man 3 (2013).
The A.I. that Tony Stark builds to replace J.A.R.V.I.S., is called F.R.I.D.A.Y. This is a reference to the 1940's slang term "girl Friday," meaning a woman who performs different secretarial duties around an office. According to the DVD commentary, it's also a reference to His Girl Friday (1940), which was a source of inspiration for the characters' layered, complex, and rapid dialogue.
This is the third film, in which Robert Downey, Jr. and James Spader have appeared together, after Tuff Turf (1985) and Less Than Zero (1987). There's even a scene in Tuff Turf where Spader is walking out of a party and there is graffiti painted on a brick wall that reads "The New Avengers."
In the film, Natasha Romanov, a.k.a. Black Widow, is thirty years old, one year older than Steve Rogers, a.k.a. Captain America, who was only twenty-nine years old (biologically). In real-life, Scarlett Johansson is three years younger than Chris Evans.
Stark's command to J.A.R.V.I.S., "J.A.R.V.I.S., take the wheel" and the bumper sticker on the control panel that reads "J.A.R.V.I.S. is my co-pilot" are references to Carrie Underwood's song "Jesus Take the Wheel" and the popular bumper sticker "Jesus is my co-pilot".
Aaron Taylor-Johnson's costumes deliberately consists of "sporty, long-sleeve, cycle top, compression t-shirts and things like that" to be able to show off his physique, and "give an idea and sense of it".
When Bruce Banner is researching the brand seen on Ulysses Klaue's neck, the data that pulls up, is actually from the first two paragraphs of the history section of the Wikipedia article on Wakanda, complete with the parenthetical footnotes. "The Wakandan royal line began with Bashenga, an ancient Wakandan, whose first and only appearance was in Black Panther Vol. 1 #7 (January 1978). Bashenga was supposedly the first king of unified Wakanda, and the first Black Panther some 10,000 years ago. "In the distant past, a massive meteorite made up of the sound-absorbing mineral vibranium crashed in Wakanda, and is unearthed a generation before the events of the present-day. T'Challa, the current Black Panther, is the son of T'Chaka, the Black Panther before him, and a descendant of Bashenga. Knowing that others would attempt to manipulate and dominate Wakanda for this rare and valuable resource, T'Chaka conceals his country from the outside world." More amusing, however, is that the title of this data entry is "Thief - Data(A113). A113 is a famous Easter egg included in every Pixar movie.
The twins, Wanda and Pietro Maximoff, have a completely different past than in "The X-Men". Pietro is a couple of years older than Wanda, and their father is Magneto, who never died. Also, Pietro was a teenager in the time period of X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), and only a few years older in the modern time period of this film. In "the X-Men reality" Pietro and Wanda should be around forty to fifty years old. However, the "X-Men" movie franchise is not owned by Marvel, and is therefore not part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
According to Ben Snow, the cyberspace sequences were based on a planetarium: "The Internet grows from nothing to these forms that are massive amounts of glass cubes with colored data in them. Things form and then break away and form another structure, they're like moving sculptures."
When The Avengers are returning from Sokovia at the beginning of the film, Bruce Banner is listening to "Casta Diva", an aria from the opera "Norma". It's about a priestess who loves a proconsul, Polion, who loves another priestess, Adalgisa. Similar to what happens to Bruce Banner, Black Widow is in love with him, but at the same time, he loves Betty Ross.
Ultron's ability to update and improve himself is based on the hypothesis of an "intelligence explosion". Being one of the possible outcomes of the technological singularity, or the creation of artificial intelligence that is capable of self-improvement, the technological explosion was speculated by British mathematician and cryptologist I.J. Good in 1965 and theorizes that the creation of artificial intelligence could lead to a machine with super-human intelligence and problem-solving skills that would be able to design and build a more capable machine and even rewrite its own software to improve itself. This even more intelligent and capable machine would then be able to design an even more intelligent machine, and so on. If unstopped, this could give rise to a "superintelligence", a machine capable of surpassing human intelligence with the ability to manipulate matter or even the universe itself.
The expression, "The sun's getting real low", which is used to calm the Hulk, references the original comic where Banner would transform every night, but here it is used to make the Hulk revert back to Banner.
Falcon's costume, as seen at the end of the film, is slightly different from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014). While it is still based primarily on his Ultimate Marvel counterpart, it now has a little bit of red and white coloring added to his flight suit, as a nod to his original red and white Falcon-themed costume from the mainstream comics. This would become the standard costume design for the later Marvel films, in which Falcon appears.
Tony Stark is both protagonist and antagonist of the film: Tony Stark creates Ultron to defend and protect Earth. But, Ultron, who possesses Stark's personality, turns evil, and deems humanity a greater threat to peace on Earth, and sets out to wipe out the human race.
Nearly every Marvel Cinematic Universe film, prior to this film, featured product placement by an automaker (with the exception of Thor: The Dark World (2013), which takes place primarily on another planet). While Acura secured a placement deal for the first Avengers film, Audi replaced it in this one. Audi has previously secured placement in the three "Iron Man" films, to introduce new models not yet sold in the U.S. In this movie, the new Audis, shown in several scenes, are the S3 Cabriolet and the re-designed 2016 Audi A6 and R8.
While the phrase "Earth's Mightiest Heroes" is used in a line of dialogue in the film, none of the characters actually utter the word "Assemble". The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes (2010) and Avengers Assemble (2013) are two animated series adaptations of the Marvel comic.
When the Avengers are digging through paper files for information on Baron Strucker's associates, they find a file on Ulysses Klaue. It reads: Ulysses Klaue Affiliation: Former member of the Intelligencia Citizenship: Belgian Place of Birth: Netherlands Languages: English, Dutch Personnel Dossier: Ulysses Klaue was an assassin hired to take down T'Chaka at the Pilderberg Conference, in the case that he refused to negotiate Wakanda's resources including vibranium. But, Klaue was also there personally, as the Panther killed his great-grandfather in the 19th century, while this one was trying to annex Wakanda. He was paid ten million dollars for the kill. Since this is an official S.H.I.E.L.D. file referring to Klaue as "personnel", the implication is that S.H.I.E.L.D. hired Klaue to kill T'Chaka if he refused to provide them with vibranium. The Intelligencia was a group of super-intelligent villains with a changing roster, that at times fought against the Hulk, the Fantastic Four, the Avengers, and other individual heroes. It was led at times by the Leader, MODOK, and Ultron, among others. The origins of Leader are shown in The Incredible Hulk (2008), MODOK in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), and Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), and Ultron in this movie.
The sound effect used for Vision using his Infinity Stone, is the exact same sound used for Rey's blaster pistol in Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015). This is because the sound for both movies is done by Skywalker Sound.
In the comics, Ultron was built by Dr. Hank Pym, a.k.a. Ant-Man, as a peacekeeping force. However, the character was left out of this film, because he would be a major character in the next movie by Marvel Studios: Ant-Man (2015). Despite being a founding member of the Avengers, and the central character of the Age of Ultron storyline, this is the second Avengers movie to leave out Dr. Hank Pym.
Joss Whedon had originally intended for Loki to appear in Thor's visions, but was told that Tom Hiddleston wasn't available, so the scene was re-written to feature Heimdall instead. Hiddleston was subsequently able to film a cameo during re-shoots, but it was removed from the final version.
In the film's final battle, Ultron attacks the fictional Eastern European nation of Sokovia. In the Avengers comic book storyline "Ultron Unlimited", Ultron destroys the fictional Eastern European nation of Slorenia.
When Ultron first appears in the first trailer, his head appears black with a faded golden face. With the reveal of the Hot Toys Iron Man Mark XVIII with a detachable Ultron figure (dubbed 'Damaged' Ultron Mark I), his head turns out to be a deep/navy blue with a faded golden face. The black in the trailer is most likely to do with the lighting of the scene, or a change of the color in either the figure, or CGI render.
The first time David Bruce Banner has been portrayed by the same actor in two consecutive films, since the three made-for-television films based on the Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno version. Thanks to motion-capture, CGI, and animation, the Hulk has never been portrayed by the same actor in both human and Hulk form.
Tony Stark creating Ultron is heavily influenced by Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Tony Stark creates the Ultron android to defend the world, but Ultron's A.I. becomes corrupted, and he sets out to wipe out the human race.
Although the first live appearance of the Vision might have been in the third trailer, his image was in the promotional art, where the Avengers are fighting the Ultron army. He appears in the left-hand background of the picture.
This is the third Robert Downey, Jr. movie to have additional music composed by Danny Elfman, the other films being Back to School (1986), which Elfman composed, and makes a cameo with his band "Oingo Boingo", and Weird Science (1985), of which Elfman's band does the title track.
If Marvel Studios had the rights, this film would feature the three strongest fictional metals in the Marvel universe: vibranium (Cap's shield), uru (Thor's hammer), and adamantium (Ultron's original body), but because 20th Century Fox owns the rights to everything related to the X-Men, admantium is never mentioned in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In the comics, Iron Man, at one point, dons a black and gold colored suit with red eyes and repulsors, as opposed to blue ones, when going up against Ultron. In the film, however, none of his suits sport this color scheme. The only suit that looked anything like the aforementioned armor, is the Mark 41 (Bones) armor seen in Iron Man Three (2013).
With this film, legendary filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola has declared his retirement from filmmaking permanent. His film The Godfather: Part II (1974) was the main basis and inspiration for the film. Just a few weeks before the film's release, Coppola had heavily criticized the film and the present studio system, including Marvel, for turning it into a factory of manufacturing films for the sake of big money, disregarding quality and artistic values that was championed in the past.
When Ultron says "Invaders make Avengers" this could be a reference to Captain America's first superhero team The Invaders which included Namor the Sub-Mariner, Jim Hammond (The Original Human Torch), Bucky, and Toro (Jim's Inhuman sidekick). The team at some points also included Union Jack (who's alias appeared in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)) and Spitfire his daughter.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
At the end of the film, Thor admits he's worried that four Infinity Stones have appeared already. Thor knows about the Guardians of the Galaxy retrieving the Orb from Ronan, due to his vision, when in the the Seeing Pool.
In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: The Dirty Half Dozen (2015), it is Agent Coulson who breaks into a HYDRA base and locates Loki's scepter. He then contacts Maria Hill, so she can let the Avengers know to go to Sokovia and retrieve it, as they do in the beginning of the film.
Hawkeye's line: "Nobody would know. Nobody. The last I saw him, an Ultron was sitting on him. Uh... yeah, he'll be missed. That quick little bastard. I miss him already..." was improvised by Jeremy Renner.
Steve Rogers (Captain America) is the only Avenger, besides Thor and The Vison, who was able to move the enchanted hammer Mjolnir, albeit only making it budge slightly. In the comics, he was able to move it fully, as best seen in the 2012 crossover event "Fear Itself".
In the comics, Black Widow was a former ballerina subjected to mental conditioning and experimentation. Scarlett Johansson describes this part of her history as critical to her role in the film: "She's realizing she never made an active choice, she's a product of other people's imposition. That's going to catch up with her. That's bound to have a huge effect. There's got to be a result of that realization... You'll see her actively making some choices in her life, for better or worse."
Costel (Isaac Andrews), the boy saved by Hawkeye and Quicksilver at the end of the movie, is the same boy who appears at the beginning, looking at one of the Iron Legion's drones in the Sokovia's market place (accurately the first body occupied by Ultron after his birth).
The movie sets up future Marvel movies. The presence of Ulysses Klaue and the fictional country of Wakanda sets up Black Panther (2018), Thor's visions of an apocalyptic event on Asgard and the Infinity Stones sets up Thor: Ragnarok (2017), The assemblance of the New Avengers and departures of Tony Stark and Hawkeye sets up Captain America: Civil War (2016) and Thanos taking the Infinity Gauntlet sets up Avengers: Infinity War (2018).
In Thor's vision, later on in the film, a brief shot of the four currently revealed Infinity Stones are seen coming together to form sixty-six percent of an ethereal image of the Infinity Gauntlet (this includes the Orb, the Scepter, the Aether, and the Tesseract). In this shot, it is revealed that the Aether and the Tesseract are actually containers, of sorts, for the Infinity Stones within. The Tesseract is shown to be shattered, revealing a more ovular blue gem, and the Aether disperses to reveal an ovular red gem.
Despite Ultron and The Vision having two seemingly different personalities, they share the same origins. They both came from the Mind Stone. Ultron was born from a dormant intelligence within the Mind Stone, whereas The Vision was born from the remainder of the Stone's contents. So in a way, they are the "good" and "bad" of the Mind Stone, which suggests that the other Infinity Stones may possess their own sorts of intelligence and personality.
Before the release of the movie, Loki's scepter was confirmed to house, and be powered by, an Infinity Stone. Many speculated that the Stone in question was the Mind Stone, given how it was used by Loki in The Avengers (2012). Here, it is revealed by Thor himself that Loki's scepter was in fact the Mind Stone, except it wasn't the blue gem visible to everyone. The blue gem seen in the previous movie, featuring the scepter, is actually a container for the Mind Stone, while the Stone itself is yellow. In the Comics, however, the Mind Stone is blue.
Paul Bettany described the Vision as a nascent newborn: "He's both omnipotent and totally naive, the sort of danger of that and complex nature of a thing being born that is that powerful. The choices he makes morally are really complex and interesting."
There are two posters for this movie, one has Captain America in front of Iron Man, and another that has Iron Man in front of Captain America. This foreshadows Captain America: Civil War (2016), where Iron Man and Captain America clash over their superhero beliefs, and lead superhero armies against each other.
Neither Quicksilver, nor Scarlet Witch, are called by their superhero names in this film. They are referred to as "the Enhanced", "the Twins", or their full names Pietro and Wanda Maximoff. However, Tony Stark calls Wanda a witch during his fight with the Hulk.
Cobie Smulders described Maria Hill as being shell-shocked from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014): "We're coming into this movie where we don't really know who's a good guy and who's a bad guy and she's trying to figure out that throughout this film. She's not getting any sleep, she's doing all the work. She doesn't have the kind of manpower that she had in S.H.I.E.L.D."
Robert Downey, Jr. described Ultron's creation as a process of recognizing limitations: "The downside of self-sacrifice, is that if you make it back, you've been out there on the spit, and you've been turned a couple times, and you feel a little burned and traumatized. Tony Stark wants a break from saving the world, having done so at least nine times now. So his focus is more on how can we make it, so that there's no problem to begin with. That, you know, there's a bouncer at our planet's rope. That's the big idea."
In the comics, the Wasp was the one who gave the Vision his name, shocked upon seeing him for the first time. In the film, he's named by both Thor and Ultron. Thor refers to him as the "vision" he received in the form of a prophecy, and Ultron refers to him as the object of his "vision" for the future.
Ultron takes various Iron Man armors for his body. This is an homage to Tony Stark designing a sentient armor in the comics, which lost its morality and tried to kill Stark. Incidentally, that was Ultron's doing. He'd developed an android, named JOCASTA, who eventually rebelled against her master, and became an Avenger, and Tony Stark's mechanical aide, but suffered from being programmed to rebuild Ultron.
The elaborate sculpture depicting the Avengers battling Ultron on top of a rock, as seen during the end credits, resembles the same rock that Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) saw in his vision, with all of his comrades lying on top of it, either dead or dying.
In the comics, the supervillain Ulysses Klaue was manipulated into battling the Avengers by the Crimson Cowl, who was Ultron operating under an alias. This event appears in the film, but leads into the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe film Black Panther (2018), where Klaue becomes an antagonist of the hero.
During the party in which people are attempting to lift Mjlonir, everyone fails except Steve Rogers, who is able to move it slightly (you can see Thor's smile quickly disappear when he does). This is a reference to the fact that Rogers is one of the only humans who are considered worthy to wield Thor's Hammer, and does so in one of the comic books.
Joss Whedon describes Ultron as having a mission: "Ultron sees the big picture, and he decides to implement radical change, violent and appalling, in order to make everything better. He wants to save us."
Joss Whedon describes Ultron as a know-it-all "teenager". In the movie, one of Ultron's lines is the very stereotypical teenager phrase, "Leave me alone!", which he says to Captain America as he attempts to distract Ultron so Black Widow and Hawkeye can secure The Cradle. Even earlier, when Ultron is ditched by Wanda and Pietro, he tries to call after them, in a manner similar to a kid being blown off by his friends.
Ulysses Klaue gets his hand cut off by Ultron. In the comics, his hand was cut off by the Black Panther, which he replaced with a sonic emitter made of vibranium. This is most likely to be seen in the Black Panther (2018).
In Iron Man Three (2013), if you look closely during the scene where Maya, Tony, and Pepper are discussing the huge stuffed bunny in the living room, you can see Tony has hung a stocking for J.A.R.V.I.S. The stocking just so happens to be the same colors as Vision (red, green and yellow), the android, into which Tony and Bruce put J.A.R.V.I.S., in this film.
In the mid-credits scene, Thanos retrieves an Infinity Gauntlet from a vault, and puts it onto his left hand. In Odin's vault in the original Thor, an Infinity Gauntlet can be briefly seen, but it is right-handed, confirming that there are two gauntlets in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
All of the main, original Avengers in this film are manipulated in some way by Scarlet Witch, with the exception of Hawkeye. Incidentally, Hawkeye was the only member of the original Avengers to be under the mind control of Loki in The Avengers (2012).
In this movie, Quicksilver dies saving Hawkeye and Costel (the kid Hawkeye saves before boarding the carrier), from Ultron firing at them from the Quinjet. In X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), Quicksilver's movements are so fast, that it almost seems that time has frozen, allowing him to move in the midst of almost motionless bullets in mid-air, and even changing their trajectories by simply moving them around. There is evidence in this movie, that Quicksilver can do the same as his "Days of Future Past" counterpart, in the scene where he crosses Mjölnir (Thor's Hammer) trajectory and tries to grab the weapon in mid-air, only to be, to his very surprise, violently taken away with it (since it can only be wielded by "those who have been found worthy"). As Quicksilver is the first major protagonist to die in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, controversy has sparked about how he could have easily avoided such a fate. The reason Quicksilver did not do the same as his X-Men counterpart (and survive the attack) is partially because of the licensing agreement between Marvel and Fox, as no references to Quicksilver's affiliation with the X-Men could be made in a Marvel movie, and no references to his affiliation with the Avengers could be made in an X-Men movie. The other reason being that the Screenwriters for this movie, purposely shrank the scope of Quicksilver's powers, significantly limiting his capabilities, which also served to distinguish him from his X-Men doppelganger.
Foreshadowing Quicksilver's death, Captain America tells Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, and Quicksilver that, "If you get hurt, hurt 'em back, if you get killed, walk it off." While Cap is saying all this, they switch between showing the three characters, to whom he's talking. When he says the line "if you get killed, walk it off", Quicksilver is shown.
At the end of the film, Natasha is sent a video of Barton's son wearing a "Nathaniel Pietro Barton" onesie. This shows he is named after Natasha (Black Widow) and Pietro Maximoff (Quicksilver), the two people who saved his life.
In the comics, Vision was created by Ultron, to kill the Avengers. In this movie, he's created by Ultron, given a mind, and base set of ideals by Bruce Banner and Tony Stark, and later given life by Thor to aid the Avengers.
The band that Steve Rogers sees in his hallucination is called The Roy Thomas Players. Roy Thomas was Marvel's Editor-in-Chief during the 1970s, succeeding Stan Lee. This homage seems a bit meager, considering that Thomas co-created (with artist John Buscema) both Ultron and the Vision, during his long and influential writing stint on the Avengers comic (1966-1972).
First full movie since Iron Man (2008) that Tony Stark has not had an arc reactor in his chest (the arc reactor had been removed by the time of the epilogue scene in Iron Man Three (2013), when Tony visits the rubble of his house).
In the mid-credits scene, where Thanos (Josh Brolin) takes an Infinity Gauntlet in his left hand, and it says "Fine, I'll do it myself". This glove is the true Infinity Gauntlet. In the comic published in 1990, Thanos used the Gauntlet to reunite the six Gems of Infinity, in order to increase his powers, after receiving the mission to annihilate half of the population of the entire universe, which was ordered by Mistress Death (the personification of death in the Marvel Universe). While this is the Gauntlet that Thanos will be using, two Gauntlets exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including the one shown in the vault in Thor (2011).
During Ultron's rage about being compared to Tony Stark, the disks and plates that make up his cheeks seem to disappear, and then move back into position when he is confronted by Thor, Captain America, and Iron Man. It is possible that when angered, these cheek plates retract, to allow his jaw more articulation, mainly for expressing speech, and possibly as a nod to the open-mouthed face of Ultron in the comics.
When Iron Man, Vision, and Thor are shooting thunder and lasers at Ultron, Ultron's metallic head starts to heat up, becoming red, and making his eyes glow, which is a nod to the comic book look of Ultron.
In order for Iron Man to use his Mark 44 (Hulkbuster), a satellite that Iron Man calls "Veronica", would launch a pod containing the Hulkbuster Armor, deploying itself around Iron Man. Another pod is deployed, and follows the Hulkbuster during its battles. The floating and following pod contains spare and extra parts, in order to replace certain damaged or missing parts the Hulkbuster might incur.
The Vision's creation in this film, shares many parallels with Frankenstein's monster, such as the controversy of his creation, and the lightning Thor calls down to finish the process, and bring him to life.
Even though the tag line for The Avengers is "Avengers Assemble", the word assemble was never used in this movie. It is teased at the end of the movie, when Captain America looks at the new Avengers and says, "Avengers" but gets cut off by a black screen.
Ultron's very first body (dubbed Ultron Mark 1) resembles a very worn out, heavily damaged endoskeletal Iron Legion drone. However, his limbs appear very asymmetrical. This is because Ultron actually created that first body from the disassembled Iron Legion Drone 03, as well as using other parts, which accounts for the patchwork-esque look. Strangely enough, the robotic bodies seen earlier on before the title card, that later become Ultron's drones, share this same, asymmetrical aesthetic. In fact, the only one of Ultron's forms to sport a symmetrical appearance, is the body he has, by the time he meets Wanda and Pietro Maximoff in Sokovia, dubbed "Ultron Prime".
Though each and every one of Ultron's forms throughout the film were named, they are never explicitly referred to as such. Ultron's mangled, broken body is never referred to as "Ultron Mark 1", his second body is never referred to as "Ultron Prime", his Vibranium-plated Prime body is never referred to as "Ultimate Ultron", and his drones are never referred to as "Ultron Sentries".
During Thor's vision of the Infinity Stones, that have appeared in the Marvel Universe, they line up in their crystal forms in front of a yellow nebula that bears a striking resemblance to the Infinity Gauntlet.
The Ultron Sentries are heavily based on Ultron's comic book variation. Their eyes and mouth glow blue, but when Ultron takes control of its body, their eyes turn red, closely resembling Ultron's comic book counterpart.
Both this film, and Thor (2011), have the hammer's "worthiness" as a fairly significant contribution to the plot. Only Thor can wield Mjollnir (the hammer) in Thor, while Thor and The Vision can wield it in this film. However, even though the worthiness is a large part of the hammer's story and involvement, in Thor: The Dark World (2013), it is hung on a coat hook and left. This technically deems the coat hook as "worthy", seeing as it is not on the floor when Thor goes to pick it up, unlike Quicksilver, who attempts holding it while running and is pulled backward by its sheer weight (and the fact he is not worthy).
In the second trailer, viewers might notice Black Widow carrying two rifles. Apparently, when the movie was released, she didn't wield those two rifles. Only one rifle was used by Bruce Banner, a.k.a. Hulk, in order to help Black Widow escape from her prison cell.
After the party in the Avengers' tower, each Avenger, excluding Black Widow, try to lift the Mjölnir. According to Marvel Comics, on the hammer is written: "Whosoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor", making Tony Stark's "fingerprint" theory somewhat correct.
When Quicksilver is shot by Ultron, he has about eight gunshot wounds all over his body. When he falls down next to Hawkeye, you can only see three gunshot wounds - one in the middle of his chest, one on his left arm, and one on his right leg.
Prior to the release of the film, people were wondering why the Hulk and Iron Man (in Hulkbuster armor) were fighting. One popular theory is that they were simply sparring to see who was stronger. Of course, in the final film, they were fighting because Scarlet Witch manipulated Hulk.
Throughout the whole movie, the Hulkbuster is referred to as "Veronica", and it is only mentioned three times. Once, when Tony was talking to Banner about creating Ultron. Once, after all of the team got mind-tricked by Scarlet Witch, and once mid-fight with the Hulk, when Tony asked for a hand.
While on the table, recovering from his injury, Hawkeye says he will be made of plastic, the doctor says, "No Mr. Barton, it's made of you, even your own girlfriend won't know the difference". He says "I don't have a girlfriend". Later on in the movie, we meet his wife.