Marvel Studios may have Comic-Con in San Diego this year, but they made a strong showing Saturday afternoon at the D23 expo, the second-ever convention held by their parent company, Disney.
May 2012′s The Avengers closed out the nearly three-hour Walt Disney Studios presentation, including an exclusive clip and surprise appearances from Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow), Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye), Tom Hiddleston (Loki), Cobie Smulders (Maria Hill) and Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man, duh) — director/screenwriter Joss Whedon, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo and the rest of the cast were busy filming, with Feige noting that there are two weeks left in production. The show had advertised appearances from “Avengers cast members,” but didn’t announce any individual actors in advance.
Avoiding Avengers movie news all together? Don’t click through to the jump. Interested in a description of a cool (yet not especially spoiler-y) sequence shown at D23? Go right ahead!
The scene, introduced by Marvel Studios president of production Kevin Feige, depicted Loki in a high-tech prison, talking with Nick Fury. Loki refers to the Tesseract — the Marvel Cinematic Universe name for the Cosmic Cube, as first introduced in the post-credits scene of Thor and further expanded upon in Captain America: The First Avenger. Loki tells Fury that he wields “real power,” and Fury dismisses him, walking away and saying to tell him if “real power wants a magazine or something.”
While this is going on, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow and Bruce Banner are seen observing the conversation in a separate room with Banner quipping, “He really grows on you.”
This led to a montage of quick cuts from the film (including a very fleeting look at what appeared to be Captain America and Thor fighting each other), along with a conversation between Tony Stark and Loki — with Tony Stark notably appearing behind a bar. Stark details the Avengers lineup — “a couple of master assassins, a demigod, and a living legend that actually lives up a legend” — and Loki retorts back, “I have an army.” “We have a Hulk,” Stark replies.
The montage sequence also included a monologue from Fury, detailing the purpose behind the Avengers — that they were organized to take on the threats that S.H.I.E.L.D. can’t. In Comic-Con Hall H tradition, the clip was shown twice — pretty much back to back.
What did the Avengers cast have to say for themselves? Not much, actually — perhaps because the Marvel Studios section of the presentation came at the very end of a program that was running late, no one from the cast didn’t actually spoke to the crowd (unlike talent from all of the other films previewed), other than Downey Jr. saying “we’ll see you next summer” and calling for the clip to be played again.
At the start of Feige’s presentation, a reel was shown of the five previous Marvel Studios films — Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk (no Edward Norton footage was shown), Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger. The clips focused on the interconnectivity of the movies, scenes like Tony Stark appearing at the end of Incredible Hulk and Johann Schmidt discovering the Tesseract at the beginning of Cap. That vignette ending with the tagline “assembly begins next summer.”
Feige, wearing a “Star Tours” cap, began his part of the show with words on his own Disney fandom, mentioning that legendary Disney songwriter Richard M. Sherman composed the Stark Expo theme in Iron Man 2, and that Alan Menken (who scored Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, among others) wrote music for Captain America.
The Walt Disney Studios presentation also included looks at 2012′s animated feature Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly voicing a well-meaning 8-bit arcade game villain), March 2012′s John Carter (stars Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins and Willem Dafoe were all in attendance), the Sam Raimi-directed Oz: The Great and Powerful, Pixar’s next feature Brave, Monsters University, The Muppets and Tim Burton’s expanded, stop-motion Frankenweenie.
Pixar also announced two new projects, neither of which have official titles yet (though they had fun with that fact). One was dubbed “The Untitled Pixar Movie About Dinosaurs,” slated for holiday 2013. The high concept of that one is that the meteor that wiped out the dino population ended up missing Earth, meaning that dinosaurs still roam the planet in the present day. That’s being directed by Bob Peterson, and produced by John Walker.
Summer 2014 (yep, three years away) is the scheduled release for “The Untitled Pixar Movie That Takes You Inside the Mind,” directed by Pete Docter and produced by Jonas Rivera. Docter said the film expolores a “world inside your own mind.”
Keep reading Newsarama for more from the event — tomorrow, Marvel chief creative officer Joe Quesada is hosting a presentation, and we’ll be there, covering it live.