I’ve seen it twice now and those 141 minutes of Avengers: Age of Ultron fly by way too quickly.
While the cameos didn’t make it, Whedon did film a 195-minute cut of the film and for all my fellow Avengers addicts like myself, we kinda need the Lord of the Rings Extended Edition for the biggest Marvel epic yet. Here’s five of the biggest reasons some of which are confirmed scenes Whedon (in interviews with Empire Film Podcast and Collider) shot while others I’m hoping were cut for time (spoiler-heavy so consider yourself warned)…
The Hunt for Baron Von Strucker
At the end of Captain America: Winter Soldier, we see Von Strucker scheming and planning his next step.
It looked like he was going to be a major player or at least a mild headache for the team since he was creating his own enhanced agents.
The Avengers clearly have dealt with some of Von Strucker’s experiments based on Captain America’s response, so it could be fun to watch the team battle some minor enhanced operatives before learning the location of Loki’s specter and bringing in Von Strucker, who really should have been the big bad on this season of Agents of SHIELD (a major misstep and missed opportunity considering his fate in the film).
Lack of Loki
Whedon confirmed that Tom Hiddleston did shoot scenes for the film as part of Thor’s dream sequence, but got cut out as Marvel execs didn’t think Loki was necessary.
We did shoot something, but it didn’t play. The movie has so much. It’s so filled. We didn’t want it to feel overstuffed. I really wanted to have Loki in it, but I understood the decision that there were now too many voices in the chorus.
There really is never a good reason to deprive Marvel fans of Loki even if it’s just a quickie cameo.
Dream on, Dream Away
Marvel Studios weren’t big fans of two pivotal moments in the film — the dream sequences and Hawkeye’s hidden family.
Whedon wanted both to stay in their entirety, which is why the clip of the Dora Milaje seen in the cave in the trailer didn’t make the film’s final cut. Marvel Studios didn’t care for Thor’s subplot with Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgard), where Thor wants to know the meaning of his dream.
In talking with Collider, Whedon described why Thor’s segment was so brief in the film.
“The original scene was that Thor went to speak to the Norn and how it would work was that he’d go in the pool and the Norn possess him, basically, and Erik Selvig asks all the questions, and the Norn, speaking through Thor, give the answers. So Chris [Hemsworth] got to do something different, and he really threw himself into it, and he did a beautiful job, but it wasn’t well regarded by the test audiences and I feel it’s probably largely because it was a rough cut with no effects, but also because it’s something that in a Thor movie would work brilliantly, but in this movie is just a little too left of centre.”
“The dreams were not an executive favourite. The dreams, the farmhouse, these were things I fought [for]. With the cave, they pointed a gun at the farm’s head and ‘Give us the cave’. They got the farm. In a civilized way – I respect these guys, but that’s when it got really unpleasant. There was a point when there was going to be no cave, and Thor was going to leave and come back and say, ‘I figured some stuff out.’ And at that point I was so beaten down, I was like, ‘Sure, okay… what movie is this?’ The editors were like, ‘No no, you have to show the thing, you just can’t say it.’ I was like, ‘Okay, thank you, we can figure this out!’ You can tell it was beaten down, but it was hard won.”
The team had a sense of togetherness that didn’t exist in the first one and they fight like a trained, battle-hardened unit.
An Avengers training session or simply more hanging out eating pizza or shawarma playing sling the shield or having an archery contest would be fun and further establish the bonds of the team when they’re not saving the world. And the fact we didn’t get this Falcon/Tony Stark encounter in the film? Boooo.
More Quicksilver please
The fallen Avenger got a lot more character development scenes written out, which further established his rivalry with Hawkeye, another great nod to the comics.
“Hawkeye genuinely hates this guy, and that’s the guy who saves him. I knew it would be resonant, and make everything else work better and matter more.” We don’t really see that hatred in the movie, but Quicksilver’s sacrifice would have worked slightly better if we had seen more of “The most arrogant, the most annoying one.”
In an alternate ending, Aaron Taylor Johnson does suit up with the rest of the New Avengers, Whedon revealed.
“I said to Aaron, ‘The only way you’ll stay alive is if the Disney executives say, “Hey idiot, this is a franchise, and we need all these people and you’re not allowed to kill them off!”‘ We did actually shoot him in the last scene, in an outfit, with his sister. We also shot him, waking up, saying, ‘Ah, I didn’t really die from these 47 bullet wounds!’ Actually, we shot something else with that, but… maybe I’ll let you know about that later. But the intent was to earn this, and then you have to stand by it.”
I definitely would have preferred Quicksilver remain alive just because I don’t need a sense of real life consequences in my superhero movies. But maybe I’m the old fashioned sort that doesn’t need to have characters killed off to make something feel important.
Hey, if you want to get a real jump on the crowd, Amazon has the movie up for pre-order already: Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron 2-Disc BD Combo Pack (3D BD+BD+Digital HD) [Blu-ray]