Joss Whedon was kind enough to come out for an Avengers screening at the Hollywood DGA for a little Q&A. Among the many interesting details he shared, most notable are the hero he had scripted and cut and the possibility of a secondary villain.
Apparently there was a point in time when it looked as though Scarlett Johansson might be unable to reprise her role as the Black Widow. Should you recast her? No way. Instead, Whedon wrote up a draft including the superhero with the most costume changes in comic history—the Wasp! Whedon went so far as to say the initial script was a "very Wasp-y draft." In fact, apparently, "it was way too Wasp-y. 'Cause I was like, 'She's adorable!' I'm just gonna write her!'"
While you're imagining a Wasp-filled Avengers movie, let's talk villains, too. Sounds like Whedon's biggest conflict with the studio was over whether Loki could carry the film on his own as head baddie. Whedon didn't think so, the studios did. Whedon admits that Tom Hiddleston is the reason it ultimately did work. But who was the added villain meant to be? Whedon declined to answer because they might "crop up another time." The motivation, though, was that Whedon felt the Avengers needed "someone to hit." Korvac, maybe? Or is he simply referring to Thanos, who still managed to sneak in after the credits?
Couple other interesting points:
- Whedon's early drafts relied too heavily on "dry wit."
- Agent Coulson's death was mandated by the studio, not Joss, but was also encouraged by actor Clark Gregg himself.
- Joss' favorite scene was the one between Loki and Black Widow.
Perhaps most interesting of all, though, is that Joss confirmed that the lineup would change. While talking about figuring out how to do an Avengers story, he said:
I used to read The Avengers and part of the ethos of the team was that it changed their line-up every month. Their 150th issue was just a bunch of faces. 'Who will be in the team now?!' We had the first issue as a poster in the offices. Now that I'm working on the sequel I said, 'Let's the second issue up there! Let's change it up a little bit!' The second issue is, 'Introducing... Giant-Man!' They were already changing it up after one issue. That's what they always do.
Maybe it'll be the Wasp or, perhaps, Giant-Man. Or why not both? After all, they were married in the comics.