By Marc Strom
The "Incredible Hulk" panel at New York Comic-Con 2008 had the entire room buzzing with new footage and the revelation of Tony Stark's cameo appearance in the film, and we've got a full report for you!
The panel began with producer Gale Anne Hurd, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige and director Louis Leterrier making their way to the stage.
The first clip of the show featured Gen. "Thunderbolt" Ross and Emil Blonsky in full military uniform discussing the possibility of Blonsky taking a certain Super Solder Serum that would allow him to go toe-to-toe with the Hulk. We then saw the gruesome process, which sees disturbingly large needles stuck into Blonsky's neck and spine as Ross' voice over explains how the process will work.
Blonsky himself, actor Tim Roth, appeared on the stage at the end of the clip to huge applause from the audience.
Asked how he decided to take the role of the Abomination on, Roth remarked that he first ran it past his kids-something he saw as essential when your face is going to be pasted on lunch boxes the world over.
While Roth was a fan of the Hulk as a kid, he had never encountered the Abomination before being offered the role, and that afterward he went back to read the villain's appearances in the comics.
Feige remarked that they chose the Abomination as the villain because "he's as big as they come," noting the Hulk almost looks like the underdog next to him.
The Abomination with
his game face on
As for the possibility of an Avengers movie in the future, Feige said it all depended on how "Iron Man" and "Incredible Hulk" do in theaters this summer, but that "I'd certainly like to see that happen, yes."
Leterrier and Feige discussed how they were able to include everything from the Hulk mythos that they set out to, teasing that fans will even see a grey Hulk in the film.
The second clip of the show had Banner trapped by Ross' forces, unwittingly unleashing the beast within. The Hulk rips his way through a bevy of tanks and soldiers before coming face-to-face with a still very-human Emil Blonsky.
No needle can
scare Tim Roth
Blonsky ran through shrapnel, futilely shooting at the Hulk while engaging in some wicked gymnastic moves. Once the battle dies down, Blonsky and the Hulk are left quietly facing each other until the Hulk kicks Blonsky in the stomach.
The floor was then opened to any questions the audience might have for the panelists, with the following highlights from the panel members:
Roth thinks Blonsky "is having fun," that he really likes all the action he sees in his military life but his body's running out.
"I wonder what
if I took this?"
Asked about rumors of Nick Fury or Tony Stark appearing in "Incredible Hulk," Feige remarked, "I like when people are surprised in movies." Noting that there are some rumors that are true and some that aren't, he also teased the audience, saying, "you'll find out soon enough" which are which.
Will the super soldier serum tie into Cap? Leterrier would only note that the serum in the clip shown is Captain America-blue.
Leterrier finds working with CGI very liberating, since he can constantly enhance a scene even after they've shot the actual footage.
The Abomination will have many of Roth's mannerisms when he appears onstage, as the actor did motion capture to animate the creature.
Getting ready to
Leterrier, who grew up in France, didn't know very much about the Hulk comic series as a kid. However, the TV show was very popular in France, and as a consequence had a strong influence on the film.
While discussing the TV series, Lou Ferigno, who played the Hulk in the show, walked out on stage at the mention of his name, causing quite a stir in the audience.
Ferigno revealed he will be making a cameo, with Leterrier saying he wanted to give the actor more than a simple walk-on in the film. Encouraging Ferigno to do his "Hulk smash!", Leterrier commented that it was quite good and asked if Ferigno would like to record the Hulk's voice some time next week.
That's right, True Believers: The Hulk will speak, and he will have Lou Ferigno's voice.
The panel wrapped with the world-exclusive debut of a not-yet-finished trailer for "Incredible Hulk" which will appear in front of "Iron Man" when it hits theaters May 2.
Featuring footage previously shown as well as new footage from scenes shown earlier in the panel, the new trailer will get fans blood pumping in preparation for the movie's big debut on June 13.
But the real news was the clip shown at the very end. Thunderbolt Ross, sitting at a bar drinking his sorrows away when none other than Tony Stark walks in promising a solution to his "unusual problem."
The Hulk will talk. He will smash. And Tony Stark will be there on the sidelines. If that isn't enough to make your heart race in anticipation of this summer, then we don't know what will!
Need some Jade Giant right now? Read classic Hulk stories in Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited! And remember: "The Incredible Hulk" comes to a theater near you on June 13!