Warning: This post includes potential spoilers for The Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Despite Joss Whedon's dismissing them as "nonsense," rumors of a live-action feature based on Marvel's "Planet Hulk" storyline refuse to die. And while Mark Ruffalo has long championed another solo movie for the Avengers' Jade Giant, he isn't sure that 2006-2007 comic book arc is the direction the studio should go in -- at least not yet.
“I don’t think [Planet Hulk] is the way to go yet,” he tells MTV. “I think you need more Banner. The whole thing is just him as Hulk, on a planet, fighting other gladiators.”
Written by Greg Pak from an idea by then-Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada, "Planet Hulk" launches the character into space after the Illuminati (a cabal formed by Tony Stark, Namor, Reed Richards, Doctor Strange, Black Bolt and Professor Xavier) determined he was far too dangerous to remain on Earth. Although the intention was for the Hulk to be stranded on a peaceful planet, his shuttle instead crashes on Sakaar, a violent world in which gladiators are forced to battle for the emperor, the Red King. Hulk becomes embroiled in a rebellion that ends with him being crowned the new ruler of Sakaar.
“He falls in love, has a Hulk baby," Ruffalo summarizes, "… and then the Avengers nuke the planet.”
With that, HitFix's Drew McWeeny chimes in, insisting that although he doesn't think Marvel is developing a Planet Hulk movie, he thinks fans of that storyline will be happy with what occurs between The Avengers: Age of Ultron and its sequel:
Without giving away why and how, let's look at the state of things for Bruce Banner at the end of Age of Ultron. Banner continues to play a key role in things in this movie, and when the final war with Ultron spills onto the battlefield and out of the virtual realm, he has a major part to play. Unfortunately, that ends with him onboard a Quin jet on his way off the planet, with no way to immediately turn things around. He's going to have to ride out the trip. It's pre-programmed and he can't stop it.
From there he posits that Banner will wind up wherever the Guardians of the Galaxy are, which could lead to the introduction of elements from "Planet Hulk" without fully traveling down that path. Plus it would keep Banner in the picture more than the comic did.
Guardians of the Galaxy opens Aug. 1, while The Avengers: Age of Ultron arrives May 1, 2015.