Captain America and Hawkeye on ‘evolving fighting’ on the set of ‘Age of Ultron’

03.03.15 2 years ago

Marvel Studios

LONDON – So far, we've run our conversations with Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Joss Whedon, and Chris Hemsworth, and next up is the first conversation we had for the day, with none other than Chris Evans.

He was actually the first sign we saw after entering the Shepperton Studios lot that we had crossed into Marvel's world. A golf car drove by us with Captain America sitting next to the driver in full costume. That's one of those things that is so surreal that it took us all a moment to register what had just happened, and by that point, they had looped back around to say a formal hello.

When we sat down to talk to Evans, he joined us in the shadow of the Quinjet, a full-size set that was pretty much completely immersive when you stepped inside. Evans is always one of the most no-nonsense and direct guys you can talk to on a set, and this was no exception:

How much is Cap reeling from the events of the Winter Solider when we meet him here?

You know, he”s adjusting. The team doesn”t have anyone to report to now. There”s no more SHIELD, so we”re all kind of depending upon one another. That gives him an opportunity to kind of take more of a leadership role, I suppose. Since there”s no one else giving him orders, he doesn”t have to question the chain of command or anyone”s motives. But it does mean he needs to rely on his team a lot more, so it”s  added a little bit more tension to the actual dynamic of the Avengers. But, you know, with these movies it”s hard to dive too deeply into any one character”s plotline, you know what I mean? That”s just the nature of how these moves are gonna have to work. Do your movie and then you come to “Avengers” and then we all gotta address a group conflict and then go back to your conflict. It”s just there are too many plots, too many characters to try and spend too much time with your own individual conflict.

At the end of “The Winter Solider,” you are starting your own mission. When you enter into this film, do we see you on that mission?    

I can”t tell you that.  

How has the group dynamic evolved and how are the relationships developing?

I don”t think I can tell you that, either. These are tough to give because you don”t wanna give too many plot points away. I can see headlines now plastered everywhere and I'd get a little talking to.

We are embargoed for quite a while so you can tell us everything.

Oh, you are? Okay, then. We”re all… everyone has their own personal… The Scarlet Witch… what can I tell you? She has a way of making each of us… she gets in your head. That”s her ability, so each one is confronted with their own personal issues and demons, and that creates personal struggles as well as conflicts for the team. I don”t wanna dive too deeply into each person”s individual conflict but it”s… it”s tense.

This is your fourth film playing Captain America. How comfortable are you with the character and what ownership have you taken with who Captain America is?

Very comfortable. You know, the first movie you”re terrified. The second one, you”re intimidated because there are so many great people, but by “Captain America 2,” you really start hitting your stride and feeling like you”re making some core progress with the character. You get a little more comfortable speaking up when you have opinions. The Russos are great and I love that movie, and it all just worked out in terms of the evolution of my personal connection with the character. So at this point, I'm feeling really good and again, like I said, it”s hard to give too much individual attention to your own plotline in a movie like this. They still give you hurdles to jump, but it”s almost kind of… I'm very excited for “Cap 3.”                        

Is there carry-over from the relationship that you and Scarlett have in “Winter Solider,” which is so funny and casual?

You know, they, they do really good stuff with Scarlett in this one with her personal stories. The bond is definitely there, and in “Cap 2,” we established it. We”re not gonna keep beating on that one. It”s built. It”s there. It”s solid. The foundation is there. This movie begins with a connection between the two of us, but she has her own arc in this movie.  

Do we get the impression in this movie that they have gotten together in-between the two movies at all, or do the Avengers only come together for these big events?

Meaning does it seem like the main Avengers characters have had other battles in-between?

Have they done anything in-between the first Avengers movie and this one?

They do a good job ’cause, you know, the movie”s only a couple of hours long. You got a lot of people to fit in there, so you don”t wanna… we really hit the ground running with this movie. The opening scene is, you know, BOOM, so we don”t wanna be like, “What have you been up to?” So you hit the ground and then you kind of pepper in dialogue like, “Man, those past couple of years have been crazy, haven”t they?” That”s in no way a cheat. That”s for the audience, to say, “You don”t wanna waste your time having reunion moments. You just wanna get these guys fighting together. Everything that Marvel does, it”s a chess move. Nothing is by accident. Everything is calculated, so sometimes there are things that even I find out, and I'm like, “That”s why you did that? You guys. You sons of bitches.”

Was there anything you talked to Joss about before you started on this that you wanted to make sure was included?

In terms of the character, Joss got it right with the first and Captain America and not only that, but he”s a fanboy, you know what I mean? He”s loved comic books so it”s not like you”re talking to someone who might not have a handle on what audiences want or who this character is at his core. The only thing I talked to him about was his ability consistency. With the second Captain America, we really pushed the envelope in terms of what this guy is capable of, which I was excited to see ’cause, you know, in the first “Captain America,” he”s just strong. In “Avengers,” it was still, in my opinion, a little bit too punch, punch, kick, kick. It”s fine but, you know, you just can”t be Jason Bourne. We gotta see this guy do stuff that”s like, yeah, he deserves a spot on this squad. In “Cap 2,” he”s pinballing off of jets and doing unbelievable things. I don”t wanna take a step back, so we gotta make sure that the scenes show that he”s continued training. His fight style needs to advance a little bit. I don”t wanna go full Bruce Lee, but there needs to be more than just haymakers and, you know, front kicks. There needs to be a style of fight. There needs to be a consistent display of strength, and he should, you know, utilize your environment in a way that”s like, “Oh, that”s right, he can pick up a motorcycle with one hand.” Let”s not forget that so that I can get punched by a human and get knocked down. It just doesn”t make sense to me. That”s a tough thing to manage, to try to remember. You know, even in “Avengers,” I punched a heavy bag across a room. If I hit a person, he”s not getting back up. It”s just the way it”s gonna go, so we can”t do this any other way. That”s it. Just trying to keep your finger on that pulse, and it”s tricky with all these characters.

What is Cap”s role in bringing these guys back together again?

Well, it”s not that he”s sounding the alarm. It”s out of necessity. Once SHIELD fell, this affected everybody and…

(Evans looks over at the Marvel guys, watching them carefully as he speaks.)

I don”t know how much I could or even should say, but there is something that affects all of us that requires us all to come back together and fight as a unit. Cap”s more than willing to take a leadership role. You know, he”s been in wars.  He understands the dynamic of a team. He”s not doing it out of arrogance or ego. He”s doing it out of necessity and functionality.

Who is your favorite Avengers other than yourself now that you”re on your second adventure together?

Who”s my favorite Avenger? That”s so tough. I, I wouldn”t… I”d put myself at the bottom of the list honestly. As a man, as people… I”d take Steve Rogers. As an Avenger? Come on, I don”t know. I really think Thor is pretty cool. I really like Iron Man just ’cause, you know, I can”t get enough of Downey.  Every single line he gives is so good. It”s really crazy watching him work if you ever get a chance. You”re just like, “God, I can see why this guy gave birth to this.” We wouldn”t be here if it hadn”t been for Downey and what he did with the first “Iron Man.” Ruffalo? Everything the guy does is just so interesting and unique. Such a good choice. You know, I”d be the first to admit it… if you had asked me who”s gonna play the next Hulk, I don”t know if he would have been on a lot of people”s radar, and yet I can”t picture anybody else now but him. He”s perfect. I don”t know. Everyone”s so great.  Paul Bettany, man…. we just had our first scene with him. He”s so good. He”s so good. He”s so good. He is. You”re gonna love him.  He”s gonna be amazing.

What have the other newcomers brought to the table?

It”s gotta be tough coming in, you know, being the new kid in the playground. People have done these movies as a group and in their individual franchises. Come in and try to not mess with the formula. But everyone”s so talented and professional. I don”t know what you wanna call it, but it just feels right, you know? When we”re sitting there yesterday having a scene with Paul, with Aaron, with Lizzy and it”s like, “You guys weren”t in the first 'Avengers'? No, shit, you weren”t.” It just feels, it just feels right. It feels normal, and they”re all so cool and so good and every couple of days, Joss will show little clips of what these abilities are gonna look like and how Lizzy”s gonna see things. They”re gonna do so many cool things and everyone is just… y'know, I”ve never been a part of a movie where everyone just gets along so well, so consistently, and even when you add new people in, the dynamic doesn”t shift at all. I don”t know. I don”t know how it”s working, but I'm just happy to be a part of it.

Is there a sense, now that you”re back on set with this team and this director, that you”ve done this before? Do you feel more confident?

A little bit. In a weird way, it feels like you never really left. When it”s your movie, there”s this weight and pressure and involvement you”re in. Every single day, you”re in every single scene and it”s, uh, it”s a lot. This movie is just fun. it”s like summer camp or something. There”s still a responsibility and everyone is still wildly committed and professional about it, but there is something about saying, “We”re in this together. We”re all locking arms, you know, and we”re all a team. In sync. It feels a lot safer in a way.

Have there been a lot of script changes since you got on set?

Oh, yeah. Oh, my god. Joss. Like, before you shoot, he”s like, “Here are nine new pages.” Joss. All right. Okay. It's not major plot changes but just sometimes dialogue shifts. Sometimes, I don”t know whether it”s that there are a lot of voices and opinions coming down, or if Joss just wakes up with a brain that can”t sit still and has a better idea and a better exchange and everything is good. Nothing is bad. It never goes. It never gets worse. Everything is like, “Man, the guy just leaks clever repertoire.” Every single scene is… even on the day and in the moment, he can be, “I don”t know if I like this.” And he”ll think for thirty seconds and come up with some brilliant exchange. God, this guy”s just good. This guy”s good at this. So there are enormous amounts of changes but nothing that really, you know, shakes the earth.

You mentioned that your fighting style has evolved. How has it evolved in this film?

Well, I mean again we”re just trying to… thefoes are a bit more of a challenge, so in a way he”s not as effective as I”d like him to be. You have to measure your enemy”s ability based on his capacity to win and sometimes Cap has to take that one on the chin. Be the one who gets thrown around a little bit ’cause, these Ultrons are pretty powerful. How has his fighting style evolved? I mean, it”s not like incorporating like wing chun or anything like that. I'm trying to incorporate a lot more reflexes. I”d love to get some scene where you understand it”s not just speed and ability. It”s the fact that he can move. Even if his hands were bound, you couldn”t get a finger on him. He can still react incredibly fast so we”re trying to incorporate that, but by the same token we”re also trying to show what this foe can do. So it”s gotta catch you some times. I don”t know… I can”t get too specific about how his fighting has evolved. It”s just a matter of maintaining the speed and strength and agility and all that stuff.

The first film really set up Phase 2 in a very interesting way in terms of where it left you guys and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Heading into Phase 3 without getting into technically how it works, do you feel like this launches the characters into some really interesting places by the end of this film? Do you have a sense of where you”re going?

Oh, sure. Even if you have to look contractually, how we”re all kind of set up, if they want to have a clean break towards the end, we”re approaching the final act, so you can really kind of pull out all the stops. So yeah, by the end of this movie, everyone does have a very interesting trajectory, and it”s not so much about the next six films. It”s… we”re ready to…

(Evans stops, laughing at himself.)

I was gonna say blow our load. That doesn”t sound good at all. You know, it”s, it”s… they”re gonna pull out all the stops.      

Obviously a big part of this film is going to be Ultron. I”m curious if you can talk a bit about what he presents as a villain to the group and also what”s it like working with Spader?

Spader, god, Spader. So good. Well, I mean, this is this thing about Joss. It”s not just about the power of the villain or his shiny light or his ability. It”s the mentality of the villain. It”s really, you know, it”s Joss. He”s a very clever writer so it”s really about… you guys are…

(He glances over at the Marvel producers again.)

… can I say whatever the hell I wanna say? Am I already in deep shit?

Marvel Guys: No, you”re good.

Don”t fuck me on this, guys.

Marvel Guys: In general terms, you can talk about Ultron.

There”s an ideology behind Ultron that makes him more unique than just a bad guy. He doesn”t wanna just kill the Avengers. He doesn”t wanna just destroy the world. He has these monologues and these beautiful speeches that kind of embody a certain mentality about what”s wrong with humanity. It represents something deeper than just, “I'm evil and I don”t like the good guys.” It”s hopefully things like that. That”s what makes you care a little bit more about the story than just, “I'm an evil bad guy.” Look at what Hiddleston did with Loki. He made a real character. He made a real conflict and Loki could be in a movie that has nothing to do with superheroes. It would just be a really interesting character study, like this guy needs a therapist. But it”s deep and that”s what makes you give a shit. I think that”s what we”re gonna have with Ultron.

You talked about the leadership role that Cap plays in the Avengers now. How does that go over with Thor and Hulk and Tony Stark? I”m sure that Tony would not want anyone else to be a leader.

Certain people are moving into different things, and there are things that we”ve each seen in ourselves in this movie, each one of our hurdles, our battles, our struggles, our shortcomings, our fears. These are the things that have become the catalyst for change and evolution and for someone like Tony, maybe he may not want to be anything but the front man. He has to kind of face that but there are people like Thor. Thor”s a soldier. I mean he”s just a soldier in another world, you know, so there”s an understanding between those two men, Captain America and Thor and it's the same with Hawkeye. These guys have all been in battle, so I think for the most part, there aren”t as many conflicting egos in terms of who”s leading this crew. There are more personal conflicts and more personal questions about who they are as people and what they”re looking for and what makes sense and what”s right and wrong. It”s not so much about who”s the front man.

One of Cap”s arcs was just about being comfortable, since he's a man out of time in a very increasingly complicated world. It seems like in this movie, it”s going to get even more complicated. He has a trust issue maybe after the last film. Villains and heroes are gonna cross paths. They are gonna trade sides throughout this movie. Can you talk about his response to that? What are his demons?  

There are more relationships in this movie, personal relationships that Cap has to witness, and I think that does make him question his own purpose in terms of, you know, this is a guy that wanted the family and the wife and kids and stability and normalcy. He wants to serve his country but what he really wanted was a normal life, and then he went into the ice and things changed. So it”s a matter of where is home? You know, he”s always been a little lost and even in “Cap 2,” it”s very much about, “Well, what do I want? What am I supposed to be doing? What completes me?” And in this one, he has to watch some of those relationships close and it raises the question “Is that the end game? Is that what he”s fighting for?”   
    
There has been a visual evolution obviously ongoing with the Cap suits and how he looks, but also for you as a performer. How much input do you have in terms of what you want to do physically and how much give and take there is?

I didn”t get enough input on this, I tell you that. I really liked that stealth suit from “Cap 2,” the  navy blue one in the opening. That was my favorite one. It was so cool and it moved well and I could breathe. It was just great. They keep changing this shit.  

In the comic books, the roster is always changing. Are we gonna see a shake up? In this we have Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye. In the comics, like in the '60's Cap, all the rest of the guys left and they became the Avengers. Is that how it”s going to be at the end of this movie?  

I don”t know how to answer that one without revealing too much. I mean, you know, it”s Marvel. They”re never gonna do the same thing, you know? They”re always gonna try and make events and surprises and give audiences what”s unexpected.

Given that your suit now has the Avengers “A” on the side of it, would you say that the team has become more of a formal organization? Now that you have outfits like that?

Certainly. I mean that”s the thing. The first “Avengers,” it”s growing pains. It”s getting to know each other, finding trust, understanding our roles and developing allegiance. This, you know, we”re a unit. Like I said, we hit the ground running in this movie and since the fall of SHIELD, we”re forced to depend on one another. So right from the jump in this movie, there”s a very clear understanding:  this is a team and we operate as a team. We”re gonna win as a team and we”re gonna lose as a team. That's the undercurrent. There”s no question about each other”s loyalty to one another. It”s just a matter of how to go about as a team jumping these hurdles.

Now let's jump ahead to the very last interview we did on-set before leaving, when we sat down with Jeremy Renner, returning as Hawkeye.

So, how is Hawkeye”s, um, um, different to — [OVERLAP]

I, I — it”s, it”s a lot of the stuff that Joss and I talked about to doing the first one, but, uh, it just didn”t work out that way.  So, it was, um, uh, it”s really exciting for me to — for me and Joss to kinda dive into the character a little bit more. Um, there”s, um, some wonderful secrets and relationships deepen.  And, um, yeah, so, there”s a lot more of, of him to deal with versus like, you know, the hypnotized version of him, you know.  

It was fun, uh, yesterday talking with Lizzy Olsen and she started really laughing as she was talking about the relationship that you had at the beginning with Pietro and Wanda — and that you were a delightful grump.  Can you talk about, uh, bringing them into the movie and how it”s been to sort of welcome them into the Avengers fold, uh, as a cast?

Yeah, those are great characters.  Uh, Scarlet Witch and and, uh, Quicksilver are great characters.  And, and, uh, my character and them have, uh, a lot to do together.  Um, um, the, the — they”re, they”re a little blurry on, on, on kind of where they stand and as far as good as bad and, um, which I appreciate, I guess.  [LAUGHS]

Um, but, yeah, it”s a — I think I”m the, um, uh, sort of policing them to see if they”re, uh, they”re worthy or not, I guess, of, of being, you know, good guys or bad guys.  I question them a lot. [CHUCKLES]

Uh, one of the biggest questions that came out of Captain America 2 was: Because the S.H.I.E.L.D. was falling –where was Hawkeye?  Are we going to get a definitive answer —
— to that question.

You”ll know in this movie, yeah. Where he”s been.  [LAUGHS] Yeah.  [CHUCKLES] Yeah, you”ll know.  It”s, uh, it”s actually a really wonderful re– uh, secret reveal.  Yeah, it”s pret– pretty awesome.  

Saw a bunch of gear and diagrams and a table full of Hawkeye arrowheads and weapons.  So, talk about these new weapons that we saw.  I saw photos of his new costumes.  

Yeah, he”s got a coat, 'cause we were fighting in the woods.  So I guess he”s gotta [CHUCKLES] — he”s got this pretty cool coat.  Um, th– I can”t move in it, but [LAUGHS] it”s, uh, it”s cool-looking at least.  [CHUCKLES] And, um, yeah, all the — the tech is always — yeah, there”s always new tech and, and, and different things.  Uh, yeah, there”s a [SIGHS] — I, I don”t wanna get into any of that sort of stuff either, but, yeah, that”s some l– new, new costumes, new tech; got some new characters and they”re good guys; they”re bad guys.  Um, a lot more of us together, uh, in the movie is all Avengers, um, which is I think there”s only once or twice that we had that.  Um, so that”s been quite fun and, um, the long days to shoot, there”s a lot of people to cover in a scene when you have like ten Avengers in a movie in, uh, in a scene, but, uh, there”s a, there”s a lot more about what I think worked in the first one. Um, they”ll have that exponentially [STUTTER] — exponentially more in this one.  

I was gonna say, what was your reaction when you first got the script, and how much changed from when you first got it to what you”re actually filming?  

Um, new — the bones of it were always there and would — the script that we got was, was really solid and great, and then, as we go along, there”s more things we find and as in any movie, um, there”s a — just a lot.  There”s so much to cover.  I don”t know how Joss does it.  Um, all I have to focus on is like small, little parts.  Like I ask — what the heck”s being built over me? I have no idea [LAUGHS] what”s going on.  I mean this world and, and all the things going on in this movie is, is just so vast and so many things going on.  And, uh, but, um, yeah, I think the — for the most part the script is, is what it was when we started, and, you know, you make minor adjustments to here and there for clarity and, um, like I said, t– it”s a big, big, big movie. 

Right.  By, by its nature, Hawkeye”s a very physical role.  He was very involved in that final battle sequence with– without having the powers or — tech of some of the others.

That”s the fun part.

Yeah.  But so how — how”s that changed in this movie?  Is it, is it, is it more physical?  Does it feel like it”s — do you have still have to kinda feel like you have to kind of stay up with the other peop– other Avengers?

Um, yeah, I b– I suppose it”s — uh, I”ve done a lot of the —  lot of that stuff already.  We still have a couple more sequences to go where it”s, you know, it”s, it”s fun.  It”s — you have to be, you have to be a smart fighter when you”re — when you don”t have the super powers, you know, and that”s what makes him [CHUCKLES] sort of super, in a way, I guess. You know, he has to use his mind as much as it his physical ability, um, and his ability to never miss.  I still miss [LAUGHS], but, yeah, stay the distance and don”t miss.

Hawkeye seems very cynical and skeptical.  How does he react to something like the vision coming up?

Yeah, that”s, that”s th– that, again, that”s, uh, you know, just like, you know, Pietro, uh, who”s, who”s Quicksilver, and, uh, Wanda, who”s Scarlet Watch.  I mean he”s always very skeptical of new people, 'cause it”s, it”s sort of — it”s military kind of thinking in the sense of like, I have to trust that you have my six or you have my back while I”m trying to manifest something up here. You have to work as a unit, as a team, otherwise we all fail or I die or somebody else dies.  So that”s where the skepticism comes in.  It”s not to just to be grumpy or not to like somebody.  It”s put th– it”s, it”s all there for a reason, and that”s — that plays a lot in this movie.

Does he still have a strong connection to Black Window for that reason?

Uh, yeah, yeah, of course.  They”ve, they”ve — they have a, a long, long history together and that — there”s more of that revealed, uh, in this well.

He is particularly skeptical with Scarlet Witch though, because I mean, uh, he has to be kind of burnt after having the mind control, 'cause — [OVERLAP]

Y– well, yeah, there”s, there”s a little bit of that, yeah.  I mean 'cause that, that happens to, uh, to, to people in the, in the movie, I guess.  You know, it”s [CHUCKLES], uh — I”m not giving away too much, but, uh, yeah, yeah.  I mean it”s, uh [LAUGHS] — uhh, he doesn”t — y– yeah.  [STUTTER] Yes, there”s animosity, I suppose, with any new comer, good or bad.

The last few years has been especially kind to Hawkeye in the Comic Books.  Um, I think that fraction is pre to date. Um, and is there any sense for you, as the Avengers as you”re finished with this, that, uh, that they”re gonna explore Hawkeye away from the Avengers?

[SIGHS] I don”t know.  I mean no.  Well, I mean there, there — there”s always opportunity in the, in the Marvel universe to, to jump into a lot of different scenarios, but it only makes sense, I think, um, that just as, as an outsider, that, you know, Captain America, those sort of things, he fits into that world pretty world, so similar in their sort of military kind of ideals.  Um, like Hawkeye”s not in Thor.  Uh, really it”s to really hard to really imagine that or — but, you know, they, they leave it pretty wide open for a lot of different venues, a lot of different scenarios to have.  Um, I do not know, um, the future.  I”m just happy to be doing it now.  

Do you have a personal favorite Avenger as a Captain?

Um, a– as the — as captain or —

Yeah, as you subbed, did you have a personal favorite?  

Oh.  Uh, I don”t know if I — you know, they”re — I think they”re all — they all have their own cool things about it.  It”s like a h– producer and an actor.  Um, there”s no other part I”d rather play then the one I”m doing.  It”s, it”s a r– it”s a real human being, and I know how to [CHUCKLES] do real human stuff.  [LAUGHS]  I don”t know the other guys do that [CHUCKLES] superhuman thing.  [LAUGHS]

Okay.  Just a kind of a follow-up from my earlier question.  How is Hawkeye dealing with the fallen S.H.I.E.L.D., 'cause, obviously, this is an organization he was a huge part of and not only — was rotten to core?  

Yeah, you know, it”s — yeah, I — for me, my take on it is, you know, it”s probably a good thing. Um, he”s kind of a loner anyway. And, uh, he”s a team player, only 'cause he sort of has to be.  He”s not really a company man. You know what I mean?  Cap, g– I guess can be that guy. Um, Hawkeye”s — is, uh, his own corn– again, a lot”ll be, uh, revealed with, uh, a few simple scenes.  You”ll understand why he is and thinks the way he thinks.  Um, but, yeah, S.H.I.E.L.D., I don”t think, was ever really that important to him.  Fury”s awesome. He want, he want — he likes Fury and will do anything for him, but a company is just not done.  He doesn”t punch in and punch out.  

With that, that on the future of Hawkeye, where they”re going with it, I mean they obviously had a s– a pretty successful season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. — where Hawkeye could've appeared.  There”s gonna be all these Netflix series where th– theoretically, they have Hawkeye show up. I mean do, do you k– do you kind of have any do– interest of — like what is, what is your personal interest as far as being more involved in the Marvel universe as Hawkeye outside the movies?

Um, I, yeah, I think they — well, there was talk of, of, uh, having, you know, some of the guys go up and jump onto TV show.  I remember mentioning something about that.  Um, again, there has, there has to be a good rhyme or reason for it, and, you know, I like the character enough and anything to do to, to explore him more, um, I”m always open to it, um, 'cause he”s n– obviously not had, uh, a franchise of his own to really deeply explore really the — who Hawkeye is.  And, um, yeah, I”ve, I”ve always liked to explore the guy more.  It”s — he”s interesting character to me.  

Does it conflict with the movies, what, what Joss is doing with the movies to have him in appear in things where they really have to keep it very tight?

If they try to — you don”t wanna — even if you — when you blow the lines like that, you still don”t wanna cement yourself into a direction to where, you know, you kill somebody off.  It”s hard to kinda bring that back.  I mean they kinda did that with S.H.I.E.L.D. with Coulson and the Avengers died; right?  And — um, they do — they try not to, to box themselves too much into those things, 'cause it leaves, uh, these options for them.  And Feige is the, is the puppet master behind all this.  So I think they”re really smart about that stuff.

Talk about the, uh, the vibe on set compared to the first film.  Um, Downey and a few of the others have talked about it so much.  Everyone”s having a lot of fun. And it just feels like a more of a like a family unit. Was that how it”s been for you?

Yeah, absolutely.  I mean I saw, I saw Downey like twice, I think, in the last Avengers, and this one, you know, uh, we”re all together a lot more.  So that makes it really, really great, and, um, also, um, tedious when we shoot it, because it”s [CHUCKLES] — there”s so many people to cover.  And, um, uh, there”s so many storylines to tell, but it makes the, uh, the off-camera stuff just so much more fun.  Um, I personally like to go to work and just work and like knock out some action sequences and get it done and, and, and we do do that, but then, when we”re all together, it”s, it”s, uh really great fun.  It”s — it is a really wonderful family unit.  It”s the best part of doing a big, crazy, action movie like this, which usually can be quite unfulfilling as an artist, but because th– all the people a– involved in this are so great, it just — it makes coming to work every day really, really joyous.

In terms of the action, Chris Evans was talking about consciously really wanting to evolve Cap”s fighting style in that scene that happened.  Did you want —

Yeah, I think that”s always, um, that”s always c– it”s still always trying to find that, and it — they alwa– again, there”s new tech and new costumes and new things.  And there”s always new abilities and new sort of, um, things, like it — for instance, if Hawkeye”s a distance guy, [SIGHS] what happens when it”s up at close quarters. And we did a little of that in the first Avengers, but, um, having to use, you know, arrows and just enhance and having to do different things like that, which en– need a little nim– you know, be nimble and slam to people”s legs and do — you have to be clever with things, clever-fighting is, is to me is, uh, what I like to l– explore a little bit more with that as well.  And then using each other, like if it was Cap and I and, say, Widow in the scene and how we can use each other”s abilities to — you know what I mean? Uh, it”s teamwork.  And say, uh, you can toss me somewhere up, uh, higher or — and that”s where these new characters are great, too, with, with the Scarlet Witch.  Um, you”ll find that her abilities are just being tapped into, um, in this movie, um, and what they can be become, which is — sh– she”s still learning what they are, um, which is really cool, man.  That — that”s to me is a nerdy, geeky dude about this world, is, like, that”s what I”m excited to kinda see what happens in the future, because that, that can be quite fun.  And, again, it happens a little bit this, but I really want to explore more of that.  

We saw in the, in the prop room, you, you talked a little bit about, like, uh, a whole bunch of arrowheads that had almost been like Starked-out.  Can you sort of talk about like, uh, some of those things.  And did you — did they tell you in advance before filming, like that you were gonna have some arrows that do this, or did sort of you arrive on set and they showed ’em to you?

Um, both.  Just both.  Um, i– it — it”s also — it”s kind of a — kinda like the bat belt, you know, of, of [CHUCKLES] — for Hawkeye.  He can — really has a lot of utility. And for writers and f– to make this scene th– creative in any scenario, we gotta — oh, wait.  He uses an arrowhead to, you know, does this and does that, um, but it”s still just the tip of an arrow.  It can only do, um, so much.  But, yeah, some things — I don”t know.  Got a couple new tech things that were, were pretty cool.  I”m like, oh, I didn”t know I had that.  I”m like all right.  [LAUGHS] That”s cool. That”s a cool one.  Yeah.

Do you wanna tease us with one of the specifics?

No. [LAUGHS] There”s a couple new one — c– cool new ones though.  

Hawkeye makes such a vulnerable character.  Um, you know, like, before this movie, did you ever already read that into it? Like the — like, I think Evan said, they are a military unit in the Avengers.  Was it easy for Hawkeye to sign up when he was like recruited or whatever or that?  He”s like I”m onboard, or was Hawkeye — I”m curious what the motivation is for Hawkeye to join a team rather than doing his own thing, you know.

Yeah, you have to see the movie for that one, brother.  [LAUGHS] Yeah, it”s a — yeah, for sure Cap is, is the cap and, um, he, he calls or Fury calls, um, that”s who he listens to.

Now, Joss”s — Joss touch was obviously all over the first Avengers, but this is — this movie”s different, because it was his from day one.  It”s strictly coming from him.  Is there — that”s — I mean and Robert talked a little about finally knowing Joss after this movie.  I mean how has that been different, working with him and, and this — the movie?  Has that been different just in terms of your relationship with Joss?

Um, well, I”m, I”m seeing him a lot more, which is nice.  You know, he”s — I”ve known him since “98 since I did Angel with him.  Um, yeah, I mean it”s, it”s great to dive into, to the char– a– and he”s just as excited as I am about, just for me personally, for us finding, you know, who Hawkeye is.  I remember the beginning of the movie, we were shooting the end of the movie as movies go; right? And we — there was this moment, um, where, you know, it”s, it”s a — more of a chatty bit for Hawkeye, and we realize, wait, well, and we”re running out of time or doing all this stuff, all this action stuff.  And he”s like I — let”s finish all the action.  Maybe we can do the little talky back, uh, back on stage or something, and it”s — he was a little afraid.  It”s like this is the first time I really kinda see him in his personality or what his sense of humor might be or what — who he really is.  And, like, yeah, I know, let”s, let”s [STUTTER] think about it for a minute. Let”s play around with it, not — and not have like 30 minutes and shoot and, you know, cement ourselves into something.  So, we — it”s been a lot of fun.  Um, you know, I, I always feel good, 'cause I know [CLEARING THROAT] him so well. I know when he likes a take and he likes something, and, and it”s always been like one and a half takes and, like, okay we”re done.  I get it.  Neat.  When I get him smiling or laughing and he feels good and, um, that”s, that”s a good feeling.  I like, I like making him happy, 'cause, um, I trust him. Even I don”t know what I”m doing on half the time, I”m like [LAUGHS], like really?  Well, okay.  Right, I”ll do it.  [CHUCKLES] And I mean I”ll fight back on a few things [CHUCKLES], but, yeah, I know how to shoot a bow and arrow.  Um, [CHUCKLES] you tell me, like, what to do.  [LAUGHS] But, uh, yeah, he”s great, man.  We”ve, we”ve had a lot of fun and he”s, you know, he”s the, he”s the mastermind behind all this stuff, uh, in these Avenger movies.  They”re impossible to write.  Impossible.  [CHUCKLES] But he does it and pulls it off.

“Avengers: Age Of Ultron” is in theaters May 1, 2015.

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