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Johansson, Renner Back as Black Widow, Hawkeye in “Avengers” Sequel

Acclaimed actors Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner reprise their beloved, kick-ass roles as Black Widow and Hawkeye, respectively, in Marvel's new action-adventure “Avengers: Age of Ultron.”

Acclaimed actors Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner reprise their beloved, kick-ass roles as Black Widow and Hawkeye, respectively, in Marvel's new action-adventure “Avengers: Age of Ultron.”

When Johansson dons Black Widow’s gear for the new film, she has one clear goal in mind: keeping true to her character. She says, “The most important aspect of my job as an actor, who’s been carrying this character from ‘Iron Man’ to ‘The Avengers’ and ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier,’ is to keep consistency with the character’s arc and have the character’s evolution be one that is cohesive. You want to feel like the character is growing as opposed to just staying the same.”

Although Johansson worked with different directors over the course of inhabiting the Natasha Romanoff character, it was her first meeting with director/writer Joss Whedon that allowed her to explore her character’s past. “In my first meeting with Joss, I had the chance to talk about Natasha’s backstory and her sordid past,” recalls Johansson, “and I wanted to make sure that she stayed sort of gray, not really black or white. What’s exciting and compelling about the character is that she’s not Cap; she’s not righteous. She was in S.H.I.E.L.D. because it’s where she belonged, not necessarily that it was the right place to be. Now we find The Avengers in business as usual mode but it’s changing. So it’s my job to make sure that Natasha, through that change, stays true to the Natasha that I started with in ‘The Avengers.’”

In Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” a new threat to humanity raises its head—the powerful Ultron. Johansson informs, “Ultron’s everyone. He’s everywhere. I guess he would be like big brother in a way—the evil big brother. He’s much greater than The Avengers combined, although it turns out not to be true but it feels like that.”

Meanwhile, when Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye hits the big screen again in Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” audiences will learn a lot more about him. Hawkeye spent most of Marvel’s “The Avengers” in a Loki-induced hypnotic state but this time around he is standing toe-to-toe with the rest of the team and his character deepens as the story unfolds. Renner comments, “It was really cool to be able to explore Hawkeye’s human side and that was my main attraction to doing Hawkeye in the first place because he’s a character that is human and he’s flawed and has limitations.”


The expanded look into Hawkeye’s personality and background also means different relationships with the other members of The Avengers team. Renner comments on Hawkeye’s relationship with Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark/Iron Man, saying, “It’s a little different now after exploring a little bit about Hawkeye’s past in the last one. This one is deepening their relationship a little further. With Hawkeye and Stark there’s a lot more to explore and Downey’s just a ton of fun to work with. He knows how to keep it alive and fresh and you never know what’s going to come out of his mouth. I like that.”

As far as the team dynamic goes on and off the set, Renner says, “None of us Avengers get along that well and that’s a really great thing; it’s a dysfunctional family. But off set we do all get along very well and the cast has probably been the best part of making these movies. In this one we’re together a lot, which is great for us but terrible for Joss Whedon because it’s tough to wrangle 10 crazy actors that love each other and just want to talk. It’s like kindergarten class. He literally has to whistle to get our attention. Ritalin just needs to be served at lunch. But it’s been a lot more fun and connective tissue with us off set and on set because we had a lot more to do in this together.”

Marvel Studios presents “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the epic follow-up to the biggest Super Hero movie of all time. When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to The Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure.

Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” stars Robert Downey Jr., who returns as Iron Man, along with Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Mark Ruffalo as Hulk and Chris Evans as Captain America. Together with Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, and with the additional support of Don Cheadle as James Rhodes/War Machine, Cobie Smulders as Agent Maria Hill, Stellan Skarsgård as Erik Selvig and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, the team must reassemble to defeat James Spader as Ultron, a terrifying technological villain hell-bent on human extinction. Along the way, they confront two mysterious and powerful newcomers, Pietro Maximoff, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and Wanda Maximoff, played by Elizabeth Olsen and meet an old friend in a new form when Paul Bettany becomes Vision.

Written and directed by Joss Whedon and produced by Kevin Feige, Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” is based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series “The Avengers,” first published in 1963. Louis D’Esposito, Alan Fine, Victoria Alonso, Jeremy Latcham, Patricia Whitcher, Stan Lee and Jon Favreau serve as executive producers.

Get set for an action-packed thrill ride when The Avengers return in Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” in Philippine cinemas on April 22, 2015.

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