ANAHEIM, CA - Robert Downey, Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Cobie Smulders and Tom Hiddleston appeared at Disney's D23 Expo today to promote their new movie "The Avengers" and provided the first real footage at the May 2012 release. The most important news of the day for "Avengers" fans? Your villain is confirmed and it's none other than the devious Loki.
With production still underway in Ohio with director Joss Whedon and star Chris Evans, studios president and admitted Disney fan and card carrying D23 member Kevin Fiege was left to hold court. And instead of showing yet another teaser trailer, Feige premiered what was an impressive 4 minute-plus clip from "The Avengers."
The scene starts off in what appears to be a S.H.I.E.L.D. hellicarrier as Loki (Hiddleston) is being held a contained, secure room. Nick Fury (Sam Jackson) and the Asgard god bicker and the S.H.I.E.L.D. head lets him know the room was designed for someone stronger than him (no doubt, the Hulk). Meanwhile, Black Widow (Johansson), Agent. Maria Hill (Smulders), Thor (Hemsworth), Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), Captain America (Evans) and Iron Man (Downey, Jr.) are watching their conversation from other parts of the ship. A montage appears of each hero and their specific skills as we hear Stark saying, "Let's do a roll call, shall we? We have a pair of killer assassins [footage of Widow and Hawkeye], a demi-god [Thor throwing his hammer on Captain America using his shield as protection] and a living legend who is living up to his reputation [another shot of Cap]."
As Stark comes from behind a bar with a drink in hand, Loki says, "I have an army."
Stark fires back, "We have a Hulk."
Cut to the first shoe of the Ruffalo motion captured Hulk roaring.
The cast then appeared on stage and when Downey Jr. was introduced at the end, received a standing ovation from the 4,500 or so in the Anaheim Convention Center crowd.
On a side note, unlike their Pixar counterparts, Marvel Studios did not announce any future Marvel films during their part of the Disney presentation.. There was scuttlebutt that the company could confirm a "Doctor Strange" feature, but Fiege remained silent on that possible tentpole.
"The Avengers" opens May 4, 2012.
Look or more on "The Avengers" and D23 on HitFix this evening.