With “Avengers: Age of Ultron” just five weeks away from hitting theaters, Disney has released a baker’s dozen of what they’re calling “fun facts” (hat tip to ComicBookMovie) that offer new insight into characters like Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and tech like the Hulkbuster armor.
Arguably the biggest reveal included in these facts are the details regarding the Scarlet Witch’s powers. Unlike the rest of the heroes introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver don’t have powers based in science, technology or training. While we’re still waiting for the details on just how this duo came to possess their abilities (the mid-credits scene in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” hinted they may have something to do with Loki’s Chitauri scepter), the fun facts describe Wanda Maximoff’s abilities in detail.
8. New characters entering the Marvel Cinematic Universe from the comic book world are Wanda (Scarlet Witch) and Pietro Maximoff (Quicksilver), who have powers that have not yet been seen on screen. Pietro is lightning fast and Wanda possesses the power of telekinesis, and she is able to fire neurons in people’s brains remotely using her powers and as a result can manipulate their minds.
While Quicksilver’s super-speed has been more or less adapted exactly as it exists in the comics, Scarlet Witch’s hex power has undergone a transformation. In the comics, her powers have gone from vague “probability altering” to omnipotence-level reality warping. The film will instead will focus on telekinesis and mind control, as evidenced in the trailers we’ve seen.
The other big news deals with the creation of the Hulkbuster armor, specifically who was behind it.
10. The Hulkbuster is an iconic piece of Iron Man tech-a prebuilt super-suit designed to take on the Hulk. The Hulkbuster Armor was developed by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner, after they studied the Hulk’s physical actions and strength levels in an effort to find a way to contain him and minimize the damage caused by his rages. A satellite in low orbit is always around Banner and at a moment’s notice, Tony Stark can deploy the Hulkbuster armor, get into it and stop the Hulk in his tracks-theoretically.
The Hulk vs. Hulkbuster fight has formed the backbone of most all of “Age of Ultron’s” trailers, and now we know that Banner at least had a hand in creating the armor in order to keep his Hulk side in check.
You can check out the other 11 facts below. “Avengers: Age of Ultron” opens on May 1.
1. Hulk got a welcomed upgrade to his wardrobe with the addition of stretchy pants, which he wears underneath his clothes. No more will he be caught in the embarrassing situation of being half-naked in shredded clothing when he Hulks-out-the pants, made of high-tech, microfiber fabric, stretch with him.
2. Thanks to Tony Stark’s engineering skills, Hawkeye received an upgrade to his weaponry. He now has many new arrow tips that serve different purposes. Some of these are explained in the movie and others the audience will just get the joy of seeing deployed on screen. Hawkeye’s quiver has also changed-it is more automated and faster loading, and is capable of holding nine arrows.
3. Hawkeye’s bow also received a makeover, with the classic black color being changed to maroon. Added features to the bow include an infrared-sighting device and a sonic-sighting device.
4. An exciting change was also made to Captain America’s shield. It now has the ability to be called back, much like the Iron Man suits. Instead of having two handles in the back, the shield now has a magnetic element that clips onto Cap’s gauntlet.
5. Courtesy of Tony Stark, Black Widow gets to flaunt new fighting batons, which are based on Escrima Sticks. But Black Widow’s two sticks are charged exactly the same as her stingers, so when she jabs, she is not only striking her opponent, but delivering a massive jolt of power as well.
6. 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.
7. The Avengers Tower set is designed to serve the story in multiple ways. In the movie, the Tower, designed and built by Tony Stark, is a gathering place for The Avengers-a place to plan, do business, relax or study. There is a lounge area, three laboratory areas plus a machine room, a gym, a relaxation area and a locker room. The Tower was also designed to provide everything Tony Stark needs for his work and research.
9. Another new character on The Avengers team is Vision, played by Paul Bettany, who previously had voiced Jarvis in the Iron Man films. He’s an artificial life form whose look is truly unique. Vision’s powers are spectacular and he represents a new power base for The Avengers team.
11. The redesigned Quinjet has a more militaristic look this time around and the pilots are now able to have a good look at the environment around them while flying. The design of the canopy was based on a helicopter cockpit with glass in front and below, which will give audiences a tremendous sense of speed when the Quinjet is flying through city airspace. The interior has been stripped down to a more utilitarian, sleek space as well, with many of the luxurious finishes and padding removed for an edgier look.
12. A unique asset to the production in Seoul was the use drones and remote control cars to put the camera in places that could never be achieved by camera operators or helicopters. The production enlisted the expertise of brothers Menstru Pa, who is the Korean National Champion in drone flying, and Pak Min Keu, who is the Korean National Champion in remote car racing.
13. Dressing the Super Heroes for a pivotal party scene was a task that fell to veteran costume designer Alexandra Byrne. Since it is the first time that Thor has ever been seen in party clothes, Byrne worked with Chris Hemsworth to find the right combination of jeans, jacket and shirt that would dress his shape and not look themed or fancy. Dressing Tony Stark was easier, especially since Robert Downey Jr. wanted a very sophisticated look. Subsequently it was off to London’s famous Savile Row for tailoring. After five fittings, Tony Stark emerged looking quite elegant.
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