Joss Whedon, Cobie Smulders And More Comment On Maria Hill's Place In THE AVENGERS

Talking in detail about how she won the coveted role of Maria Hill in The Avengers, director Joss Whedon and actress Cobie Smulders look back at the audition process and reveal new detail about how the character butts heads with her boss, Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury.

Joss Whedon already has his plate full with bringing together all of the different characters introduced in Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger, but that didn't stop him from including S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Maria Hill in Marvel's The Avengers as Nick Fury's second in command on the Helicarrier. "The idea behind Agent Maria Hill was I needed someone to bounce off of Nick Fury so that everybody is not in accord," the writer and director of the film revealed.

"I also needed someone to step up on the Helicarrier when Coulson is out in the field and last but certainly not least, for the love of God, I needed another woman in this movie," he added. "I love the character from the comics because of the tension with Nick Fury. She doesn’t necessarily think he’s doing things right and that gives the character a nice arc as well. It’s also something we can honor from the comic book and still bring in a new voice to the movie world."

To find the perfect Maria Hill, Whedon reveals that they brought in several different actresses to actually read with Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury) in order to endure that they found the right actress. That would prove to be How I Met Your Mother's Cobie Smulders. "We saw some really strong performances and then Cobie came in the room and it was fascinating because everyone had their own prediction of who might get it. They all read a fake scene with Samuel Jackson and then we went right next door and watched them instantly. Everyone was great in the auditions, but what it all boiled down to was the fact that when Cobie pointed that gun at him, I thought she might shoot him,. Even though I wrote the scene in the moment, I really thought she could take him down. Cobie has an absolute authority and physical confidence that isn’t ostentatious but instead, is very precise and absolute."

Cobie Smulders had this to say about landing the biggest role of her career. "I was just blown away when I found out that I got the role. To be able to part of the Marvel Universe and play such a great character was something that still has not settled in and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity. At the beginning of the film, assembling The Avengers team is one of the major reasons that Nick Fury and Maria Hill do not get along. She thinks that they’re a huge threat, especially the Hulk. They’re very volatile characters and I think that she’s a bit more by the rules and would rather take things out in military style rather than bringing together this team of loners—loners in the sense that they do their own thing. But then after what happens, she sees that we need them."

Executive producer Louis D’ Esposito asks, "Can you imagine how daunting and intimidating it would be to come on set when you’re not a Super Hero, you don’t have any super powers, and you’re going toe to toe with Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Hulk, Black Widow and your boss Nick Fury? What’s amazing about Cobie is even when she is surrounded by all of the other characters in the film, she still stands out and pops on screen. Agent Hill is here to stay, and in ‘The Avengers’ she becomes an important part of the S.H.I.E.L.D. team."


Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America
Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark/Iron Man
Chris Hemsworth as Thor
Jeremy Renner as Clint Barton/Hawkeye
Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Ramanoff/Black Widow
Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner/Hulk
Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury
Tom Hiddleston as Loki

RELEASE DATE: April 26th, 2012. (UK) May 4th, 2012. (US)

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