Speaking to Australian outlet, The Age, actor Samuel L. Jackson, the highest grossing actor of all-time looks back on working with director Joss Whedon and the rest of The Avengers cast.
On working with Joss Whedon-
Samuel L. Jackson: Joss Whedon is very good at what he does. He’s incredibly smart, and he’s a great director and writer. The script was constantly evolving. We would get eight or nine pages, and two days later he would say, “I was thinking about that… Now it should be this.” Once you look at it all on screen, it all comes together – and it’s very nice.
Why he thinks the movie performed so well at the box-office-
SLJ: Joss knows more about the comic book genre than most people, especially within this particular franchise. He has an understanding of the relationships of the characters and he understands the Marvel world. He put the story and the characters together in a very unique and wonderful way.
How much direction did Joss provide on-set-
SLJ: He was very hands-on and he was always incredibly focused on set. Actors like to come in, look at the script and then say, “I’m going to make this mine.” So I’d start saying words and then Joss comments, “Wait a minute… That’s not what I wrote in the script.” He wanted us to say exactly the same words that he wrote because that’s how these comic book characters talk. He only had to tell me once and I got it right away. He understands the language of comic books and that’s how we needed to sound.
What research was required for the role-
SLJ: I’ve been reading the Fury comics since I was a kid. I remember when it was Nick Fury and his Howling Commandos in the War World II war comic books. That’s when I was introduced to him, and then I moved on. Then all of a sudden, I pick up an Avengers comic book and I was like, “Hey, that’s me!” It’s amazing. It’s great.
On a change to the appearance of Nick Fury that no one has noticed thus far-
SLJ: At a certain point in the production, it only took the makeup team 20 minutes to put on the eye patch and scars. However, the first time it took about an hour-and-a-half because we had to go back and forth to Joss. We’d have to ask things like, “Is this too much? Is this not enough?” We actually changed the scar to the comic book scar for this movie, which is something that a few people have noticed. If you look at the Iron Man and Thor movies, the scar looks like two little cat scratches.
There's a bit more over at the site including what Samuel thought when he first met the cast and what the atmosphere was like on set. The Avengers is already out on blu-ray/dvd in Australia. America will have to wait a few more weeks, till September 25th.
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The Avengers is an American superhero film produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name. It is the sixth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film is written and directed by Joss Whedon and features an ensemble cast, which includes Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner and Samuel L. Jackson. In The Avengers, Nick Fury, director of the peacekeeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D., recruits Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, and Captain America to save the world from destruction.
Development of The Avengers began when Marvel Studios received a grant from Merrill Lynch in April 2005. After the success of the film Iron Man in May 2008, Marvel announced that The Avengers would be released in July 2011. With the signing of Scarlett Johansson in March 2009, the film was pushed back for a 2012 release. Whedon was brought on board in April 2010 and rewrote the screenplay that was originally written by Zak Penn. Production began in April 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, before moving to Cleveland, Ohio in August 2011 and New York City in September 2011. The film was converted to 3D in post-production.
The Avengers was released in the United States on May 4, 2012 in 2D and 3D.
Running Time: 2 hrs 23minutes
Release Date: May 4 2012 (USA)
MPAA Rating: PG 13 for for intense sequences of action and violence, some disturbing images, and language
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Hiddleston, Cobie Smulders, Jeremy Renner, Clark Gregg, Stellan Skarsgård, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson and Lou Ferrigno The Incredible Hulk (voice) .
Directed by: Joss Whedon
Written by: Zak Penn (initial screenplay), Joss Whedon (revised screenplay)