There have now been two recent attempts to turn The Incredible Hulk into a major movie franchise and neither of them succeeded. In a way, it’s not surprising since the character is a difficult one to relate to and he generally requires a ton of complicated CG effects work. Both Ang Lee and Louis Letterier’s films have their supporters, but the fact that Marvel chose to recast Bruce Banner for The Avengers speaks volumes. You would think that after two failed attempts, Marvel would simply cut their losses and move on, but it appears that may not actually be their intention. With the reaction to the Hulk in The Avengers being surprisingly positive, he could get another standalone film after all. The question is, will this one actually stick?
In a recent article for Forbes, Marvel’s Paul Gitter explained their strategy for assembling The Avengers and discussed what the future might hold. In doing so, he revealed that the popularity of the Hulk has been climbing steadily:
“‘It’s just like you would think — Iron Man and Captain America sell more than Thor,’ says Gitter. However, The Hulk may soon surpass them all. Marvel executives have been ‘pleasantly surprised by the phenomenal response’ to this green superhero, and expect this fan affinity to further strengthen once the movie opens. ‘His sales are up in a major way. We repositioned him from where he was always misunderstood to now depicting him in a more heroic and aspirational manner.’”
He confirmed that they are planning to spin him off into his own TV series next year (to be produced by Guillermo del Toro, which we already knew about), but the article also hints that the new show will be “presumably supported by a big budget franchise movie in 2015.” Whether or not that is speculation on the part of the article’s author remains to be seen, but the implication is that it would follow Captain America 2 in 2014. I have heard a lot of good things about Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, and I think there will always be interest in the Hulk, but it’s really a matter of finding a writer and director who understand the character. What do you think, would you be interested in another Hulk movie from Marvel or is he a lost cause at this point?