Even though that Fantastic Four back to Marvel Studios rumor sadly proved untrue, one other Marvel Studios bit of news was confirmed. Mark Ruffalo is bringing The Hulk to Asgard for a reportedly significant role in the third Thor solo film, Thor: Ragnarok, according to JoBlo.com.
Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner/Hulk will be sharing the screen with fellow Avenger Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the two Avengers noticeably absent from next May’s Captain America: Civil War, which is essentially Avengers 2.5 so it’s nice to see the team’s two heavy hitters haven’t been forgotten.
I’m a big fan of these smaller scale Avengers team-ups. It worked wonders for Captain America as he partnered with Black Widow in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and I’m expecting similar great things with Thor and Hulk.
Unlike Cap and Black Widow, it’s highly likely Thor and Hulk will find themselves on opposing sides especially with Loki manipulating events in Asgard. And for those of us who didn’t get enough from their first encounter in The Avengers, this much anticipated rematch could be one of the biggest fights in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Beyond creative excitement, the move is a shrewd one for Marvel Studios as it looks for ways to spotlight Hulk despite Universal Studios having the distribution rights for standalone Hulk films.
From a financial standpoint, adding Hulk should bring in more green as well to the Thor franchise. Of the 12 Marvel Studios films, Thor ($181 million) and Thor: The Dark World ($206 million) are No. 9 and No. 8 respectively.
We’ll see the clash of the titans in the Taika Waititi-directed film on Nov. 3, 2017.