The Incredible Hulk owes any of its success to the portrayal of Dr Bruce Banner by Edward Norton. Well on the tip of everyone’s lips with Marvel rolling out the big films is when, if ever, are we going to see Norton as Banner. I would have thought with the Super Soldier Serum used as a plot device in the last Hulk film we might see him cameo in Captain America, but considering that film will take place before Banner was born, we might have to wait for The Avengers.
Speaking at SXSW, Norton was asked about whether he would be doing a sequel to The Incredible Hulk. For fans of his take on the Hulk, his answer is somewhat disappointing:
“I don’t think so,” he said. “I think it has got more to do with what Marvel is doing. I get the sense they have this grand vision of unspooling a lot of their characters and then starting to put them together. I think they can only do so many at a time. Obviously, they are doing Iron Man 2 and then getting some of the new ones out.”
As much as I loved Norton in the role as Banner, it is very likely that including the Hulk in any future films might just be a permahulk situation where we dont see him transform back. Hulk went through a number of phases in his history where he was an intelligent mind in the Hulk’s body, the simple mind that changes back to Banner willingly, and of course the more traditional out of control Banner that makes for better storytelling. Dont get me started on Gray or Red Hulk.
The idea that Hulk might be considered for the Avengers would either have him as a threat (not so much a villain) following the formula of the badguy not overpowering the story of your first film. But he is certainly not going to be involved even for a cameo (as far as we know) for Captain America or Thor.
It sounds more like it is an issue of them simply not using the Hulk than Norton saying he won’t play the role, at least not until The Avengers – if at all.