'Age of Ultron' will be its own origin story — and Hank Pym isn't part of it
Marvel fans lost their minds at Saturday's announcement at Comic-Con that the "Avengers" sequel would be called "Avengers: Age of Ultron" — but they also jumped to a lot of incorrect conclusions in the process, according to Joss Whedon.
In a post-panel interview with Marvel Live, the "Avengers" director put to rest a handful of assumptions — chief among them that the movie's story would follow the Avengers' most recent comic-book adventure of the same name.
"Because we called it 'Age of Ultron' — and there was a book called 'Age of Ultron' recently — people assumed that was the storyline we're doing, which is not the case," Whedon said.
Also read: Comic-Con 2013: 'Avengers 2' to Follow Dark, Destructive 'Age of Ultron' Comic Book
In the Marvel canon, scientist Hank Pym — aka Ant Man — designs Ultron as a sentient artificial intelligence to aid mankind. But when Ultron realizes that man's greatest threat is man itself, he becomes hellbent on eradicating the species.
Marvel completed a 10-issue comic-book run last month titled "Age of Ultron" — storyline by Brian Michael Bendis — a bleak, bloodsoaked peer into a hellish future where all cities have been wiped out and superheroes are driven underground. Several key Marvel characters are killed or massively altered by time-travel and contact with parallel existence.
But acording to Whedon, that's all out the window.
"We're doing our own version of the origin story of Ultron," Whedon said. "In the origin story there was Hanky Pym, so a lot of people assumed he was going to be in the mix — but he's not."
In fact, to make the story work, Whedon said, "a lot of stuff has to fall by the wayside … we sort of are crafting our own version of it, where his origin comes from the Avengers we already know about."
And the sizzle footage Hall H-goers saw would seem to hint that Ultron comes from the tech of none other than Tony Stark. As part of the title treatment shown at Comic-Con, an Iron Man helmet that went up onscreen was blasted into a new shape: that of Ultron.
Between Whedon's words and that image, fans were already speculating that Ultron would spring from J.A.R.V.I.S., Tony Stark's personal A.I. assistant (voiced by Paul Bettany).
Another interesting bit: Whedon hints that keeping an assemblage of superheroes happily working together may not be as easy as he made it look the first time.
"Getting the team toether was so rousing, Whedon says. "Keeping the team together was a completely different drama."
Watch the entire interview here: