On the eve of the Marvel Studios panel at Comic-Con International, director Joss Whedon has confirmed The Hurt Locker star Jeremy Renner will play Hawkeye in The Avengers.
"There will be some avenging that takes place during the film and that's about all I can tell you," Whedon tells OnTheRedCarpet.com. "I think it's well-known that Jeremy Renner is joining us as Hawkeye, which is so exciting for me and the rest of the cast."
Rumors circulated for months that Renner would portray Marvel's outspoken archer, leading to a report in early June that the Oscar-nominated actor was in final negotiations for the role. The studio remained quiet about Renner, perhaps waiting for the announcement of Whedon's involvement, or for the official introductions at Comic-Con. However, most everyone else seemed to treat Renner's casting as a foregone conclusion.
The confirmation comes quickly on the heels of a report that Marvel had reached a deal for Mark Ruffalo to play Bruce Banner in The Avengers, replacing Edward Norton. Presumably, Renner and Ruffalo will join Whedon and cast members Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson and possibly a couple of others Saturday afternoon in Hall H.
The Avengers opens on May 4, 2012.