Marvel Buzz: Kevin Bacon as X-Men Villain, Norton Not Hulk?

July 9, 2010
Source: Deadline, HitFix

Edward Norton / Marvel / Kevin Bacon

There are a couple of Marvel related casting stories today that we should mention, although both of them are kind of sketchy, so I'm going into this a bit cautiously. First up, Deadline says Kevin Bacon (Footloose, Tremors, Apollo 13, Taking Chance) has been cast in "the villain role" in Matthew Vaughn's X-Men: First Class. Alas, they don't know who he is playing (at all), so we have no idea who the villain will be. Bupkus! Additionally, HitFix is claiming that Edward Norton will not be returning as Bruce Banner, aka the Hulk, in Joss Whedon's The Avengers movie, instead Marvel will be casting "an unknown" in his place. Really?

There's obviously a much bigger story behind all of this Hulk news than we know. First off, it's never been officially confirmed by anyone that Marvel is actually planning on bringing back the Hulk in The Avengers. It's been rumored, and of course some will claim he will be in it, but it's never been made official. Secondly, Norton has always dodged the question and played it off like "we'll find out eventually" whenever he's been asked about returning in the two years since The Incredible Hulk first arrived. HitFix's article is rooted in the idea that Marvel is planning on making a huge announcement regarding The Avengers at Comic-Con, potentially involving the director (Whedon?) introducing the cast and Avengers line-up, without Norton.

They say that Marvel has "moved on" and that their inside "Marvel sources" are saying that they've "made a decision to hire an unknown, and they informed Norton that they won't be using him in the film." That only brings up many more questions. Who is the unknown? How much time will we spend with Bruce Banner? Will Hulk be the villain? Will he still be completely CGI, and if so, does that mean we won't see much of his non-CGI alter ego? More and more questions, but no answers yet! I've put out some emails to some people for updates, but it sounds like we'll have to wait until Comic-Con in a few weeks to find out the real truth.

Find more posts: Casting, Movie News, Opinions, Rumors



I do love Kevin Bacon. I wonder who he's gonna play. But hopefully not the hulk. They can't just replace Norton like that.

Daniel Felts on Jul 9, 2010


I'm not gonna speculate on the Bruce Banner casting. Kevin Bacon has the villian? yes please.

Xerxex on Jul 9, 2010


I bet marvel leaked fake news about Norton so people will be surprised at comic con

tim dahill on Jul 9, 2010


Norton was a great casting choice initially. He brought a depth to the character of Banner that was sorely needed without being emo like Ang Lee's. But not picking up Lettierer to direct The Avengers (not saying that was a bad call) seemed to indicate a change from The Incredible Hulk. especially since it seems Marvel is on one big freight train right now with all the movies coming out. what they need to do is get some more of the Marvel Knights stuff coming out to keep the fans engaged.

harm on Jul 10, 2010


If Norton isn't back they shouldn't even show Banner, just have all his appearances be in Hulk mode

Antoni05 on Jul 10, 2010


I think #5 is on to something. All-CGI Hulk with "unknown" guy in green (screen) suit 😛 Bacon will be the hollow man... err I mean invisible man. Sorry he's too baby faced for a baddie. Last 2-cents: both Edward Norton AND Eric Bana were great Banners, hated to see Bana dumped, hope Norton won't.

Akirakorn on Jul 10, 2010


Not interested in yet another reboot of The Hulk, no Norton = no need to to see it. As for Bacon, I simply like the guy and have always felt that his best work is yet to come.; just don't see it happening in another overhyped comic book movie.

Hattori Hanzo on Jul 10, 2010


Dumping Norton in order to go out of their way to bring in an unknown actor would be a huge mistake. You get ONE shot at making an incredible Avengers movie, then every sequel that follows will either thrive from the original's success or flounder in the nasty after-taste. Get it right on the first try, or fans will be screaming for a reboot after the first midnight showing ends.

Chris H. on Jul 10, 2010


No Norton=stupid

Dan on Jul 10, 2010


I think if the Hulk is going to be in the Avengers movie then Bruce Banner is probably going to have a small part in it. Norton would only be in the movie for 10 mins tops. Why pay him a but load of money for 1 day of shooting. I liked the Hulk movie but it wasn't because of Ed Norton. Who I believe is a great actor by the way.

DustinDestroy on Jul 10, 2010


Norton IS Bruce Banner. Marvel kills me sometimes. The guy loves the Hulk character and helped the movie out behind the scenes. He helped write it for crying out LOUD! I put Hulk and Iron Man right by each other. I can't watch one more than the other because their both AWESOME! I loved Norton's Bruce extremely more than poor Eric Bana's. Wasn't Bana's fault for that script but he doesn't look Banner-ish. He looked like he could hold his own whereas Norton's Banner looked weak. That is the Bruce Banner I'm used to! That first Hulk movie's script was just ... blah! Marvel needs to KEEP Norton and not try and sweep him under the rug like they did Terrence Howard! That's IF Hulk's even in the movie 🙂

Judasbarron on Jul 10, 2010


loved Norton as Banner. makes sense for Marvel to dump him business wise. save money and avoid conflict ala Warmachine - Terrence Howard. I would rather see him stay but will wait and see how it develops. Banner is important to the Avengers story if Hulk is the villain. if not then Hulk in ass kick mode is fine with me.

karl on Jul 10, 2010


Norton probably costs too much and they can spread their budget around better if they cast an unknown. Bacon can play a good bad guy sometimes, it'll be good to see him onscreen again , hes been missin in action 4 awhile.

B Realistic on Jul 10, 2010


Kevin bacon in his heyday would have been the absolute perfect Gambit. I remember saying that 18 years ago when I first started reading the x-men comics and dreaming of a film. And back then I was certain Picard would be the perfect professor X.

LinkfX on Jul 10, 2010


kevin bacon? i think he would be a perfect choice to play mr.sinister anyone else think so too?

Spider94 on Jul 10, 2010


Kevin Bacon could make an excellent villian as long as it is not some BS human character (looking at you X-2) however, I seriously doubt that he has been cast and there is no idea who he will be playing that simply does not make any sense.

dave on Jul 10, 2010


I don't know what happened to the 2nd Hulk film, but it certainly didn't solve what it was intended to do. Terrible locations, horrible editing, and lackluster dialogue made this one a pretty dull flick so I'm not surprised Norton's laid to rest. As for Bacon, he has a skill for acting, so I'm glad to hear he'd be on board. Still... Fox hasn't made a good Marvel Superhero film since 2003 in my opinion, so I'm not expecting much yet until I sit my ass down in a theatre and judge for myself... or if it gets such horrid reviews, I steal a dvd copy from a co-worker and judge it for free a la Wolverine (Bleh! Rotten!)

The Follower on Jul 10, 2010


Im sick, sore and tired of these egotistical assholes who have the audacity to call themselves movie executives thinking they run it all, the time has come to make a stand and if I stand alone then so be it!!! If they hire an unknown and kick Norton to the kerb I will boycott not just this movie but all movies that this arse of a company produces!! I MEAN IT!!!!

Dar-El on Jul 10, 2010


bacon is a great actor...hope it's not true about norton, they should leave him as banner he did a great job and i loved the movie

thejugfather on Jul 10, 2010


Bacon - Suprised. Norton - So bummed.

Nick Sears on Jul 10, 2010


why would they even think of replacing norton when his HULK was good??? and the marvel executives reasons out it is not a monetary issue. then what the hell is it? I mean norton loves to go back to another hulk movie... i am terribly disappointed about their move to replace him. i hope many will be disappointed...

Iggypop on Jul 12, 2010

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