"They'll have to [find a different director], because I'm not going to be available," he told MTV News recently. "It's something I'm being the executive producer on, so I'll definitely have input and a say." Jon Favreau won't be assembling 'The Avengers' for Marvel and Paramount Pictures. Despite directing 'Iron Man,' which was a phenomenal success with more than $318 million at the domestic box office, and 'Iron Man 2' (which is in post-production), the actor-writer-director won't be helming the superhero team-up extravaganza.
"They'll have to [find a different director], because I'm not going to be available," he told MTV News recently. "It's something I'm being the executive producer on, so I'll definitely have input and a say."
The comic book series, first introduced in 1963, assembled five Marvel superheroes -- Ant-Man, Wasp, Thor, Iron Man and The Hulk -- to fight off villains that one individual character couldn't beat (Captain America was added later). In subsequent decades more superheroes (and villains) joined or left the group.
The film, scheduled for a 2012 release, is in pre-production, and names bandied about for hero roles include Scarlett Johansson as the Black Widow, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury and Lou Ferrigno as the voice of the Hulk.
Favreau told MTV that his focus on a single member of "Earth's Mightiest Heroes" might not be the best fit for the team-up film. "It's going to be hard, because I was so involved in creating the world of Iron Man and Iron Man is very much a tech-based hero, and then with 'Avengers' you're going to be introducing some supernatural aspects because of Thor," he said. Though the mix works well on the pages of a comic, he said, translating that to the big screen might be more difficult. "You need somebody who has the perspective of all the different franchises to bring them together."
Favreau will be spending his time instead mixing reality and fantasy on the big screen in a different way: He's attached to direct 'Cowboys & Aliens,' a comic book yarn about settlers and Indians who have to put aside their differences to battle extraterrestrials when a spaceship lands in Arizona. Yippie kai yay, Gort!