It has been assumed for a while now that Marvel’s upcoming superhero team-up film The Avengers would follow the continuity of the original comic books run, and involve a plot where Loki would unleash the Hulk. Here is more information on that comic storyline from Wikipedia:
“Loki’s schemes eventually came to include Earth itself and these schemes often drew some of Earth’s superhuman heroes to defend Earth and, often, Asgard itself. He first battled Thor on Earth in modern times after escaping from the tree by making Heimdall shed a tear. Loki was then able to manipulate the Hulk into wreaking havoc in an attempt to lure Thor to Asgard, which inadvertently led to the formation of the Avengers. Thor was one of the founding members of this superhuman team, and Loki often found his goals frustrated by them, even when they appeared close to success.”
However, a new rumor claims that the shape-changing alien race known the Skrulls are being used as the main antagonists for The Avengers. Could this be true?
Comic Book Movie has two sources “close to the production” who claim:
“The Skrulls will ‘brainwash’ and use the Hulk in a similar fashion Loki did in the comics. Don’t expect a full on alien invasion, though; that will have to wait for a sequel. The Skrulls’ role will be largely clandestine, similar to the way S.H.I.E.L.D. operates. … Apparently, the Skrulls won’t be the only alien race to be introduced in The Avengers; their enemy, the Kree, will also have a presence as Earthly allies. This isn’t surprising information, considering a young actor by the name of Kevin Pennington has been rumored to portray a character by the name of Noh-Varr; who just so happens to be a Kree. Though I couldn’t get confirmation that Noh-Varr is Pennington’s role, at his point, all signs are pointing to ‘yes.’”
For those of you who don’t know who the Skrulls are, here’s a description from Marvel:
“The Skrulls are an extraterrestrial humanoid race who have created a vast interstellar empire, the oldest known empire still in existence, within the Andromeda Galaxy.. A Skrull can mentally cause the unstable molecules that comprise his or her body to become pliant, enabling him or her to assume other forms through muscular expansion and contraction. Once a new shape has been assumed (human, animal, alien), it takes a conscious act of will to assume another form or revert to natural.. Although the Skrulls became aware of Earth (due to its nearness to a natural warp-space access point) eons ago, it was not until recent times that they considered Earth’s threat. Their first regular surveillances of Earth began in the 1930s. To date most of the Skrulls’ excursions to Earth have been extremely small-scale, with no more than a handful of soldier-infiltrators being dispatched at any given time. It is not yet known how the death of the current ruling family will affect official policy toward Earth or the government of the empire in general.”
I had previously heard from my sources within Marvel Studios that Loki would play a big part in The Avengers movie, so I’m not sure if this information is true. Who knows, with Joss Whedon supossedly doing an extensive rewrite on Zak Penn‘s screenplay, anything is possible. For now, consider it just a rumor.