Clark Gregg, Tom Hiddleston return to the world of 'The Avengers'
May 3rd, 2012
01:09 PM ET

Clark Gregg, Tom Hiddleston return to the world of 'The Avengers'

This is not Clark Gregg's first rodeo.

The actor has played Agent Phil Coulson, right hand man to Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury, in two "Iron Man" movies, as well as "Thor."

Even so, he was in awe of the scope of this summer's first potential blockbuster, "The Avengers."

“I thought ‘Iron Man’ and ‘Thor’ were as big as they could get but this surpassed all of them," he told CNN.

Tom Hiddleston, who reprises his "Thor" role as Loki, spoke to us back in October about the changes with his villainous character in the two films.

"He’s definitively more menacing. A lot more," he said.

"Loki, in 'Thor,' is a lost prince, and there’s a degree of vulnerability and confusion about his identity. In 'The Avengers,' he knows exactly who he is. He’s fully self-possessed, and he’s here with a particular mission. There’s something about Loki that’s been expanded. He is an enormously powerful being. He’s the god of mischief, and between the end of 'Thor' and the beginning of 'Avengers,' he’s evolved. It is as if he’s been on three years’ worth of military training."

Hiddleston lived up to that on the set.

"There was one day where I managed to slightly mischievously steal Captain America’s shield and Thor’s hammer. I was parading around the subterranean tunnel with the shield – and one of the producers saw me and was like, 'What are you doing with those?'"

With a cast including Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo and more, Clark Gregg admitted that he was "surprised" they were able to pull off the movie so well.

"Ensemble movies are tough to pull off because it’s hard to thread it all together to where you care about the whole thing," he said. "You spend some time with each character and not enough time to make it all about them. On top of it, to throw in the science fiction elements of this world and the identification of the threat, and then the way these people operate together as a team."

But "Avengers," he added, "came together visually beyond my wildest imagination. It’s one of my favorite moments I’ve ever had."

When not on the set in Cleveland, Ohio, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, the group got along splendidly, according to Hiddleston.

"You finish up at work and it’s like, 'Does anyone want to have a beer or something?” And we had some fun houses," he recalled. "Chris Hemsworth had a good table tennis [set]. I have to say that Loki beats the crap out of both Thor and Captain America at table tennis."

And then there was the night "where Chris [Hemsworth] sent a round robin text message saying, 'Avengers assemble!' We ended up at a bar in Albuquerque, and it’s just the place where everyone goes to hang out on a Saturday night. What was quite interesting was your regular Albuquerque bar-goer sort of looking around going, 'Is that Jeremy Renner doing a lunge on the dance floor? I think it is.'"

But on camera, with so many characters in the movie, one has to be the stand-in to ground things for the audience. To some extent, that falls to Gregg's Coulson, who grew up as a fan of Evans' Captain America. But Gregg said one of the Avengers also takes that role. "The eyes of this movie really seem to come from Steve Rogers [a.k.a. Captain America] and his emergence in this new century."

As for SHIELD, the organization Coulson has worked for over four movies, Gregg said, "You see the purpose of SHIELD and whether it has flaws in its execution, as well as its own moral shortcomings."

Loki, of course, has no use for morals, and Hiddleston pondered the idea of his own group of supervillains: "A little bit of help from Darth Vader if I might want to do this. Hans Gruber from 'Die Hard.' Maybe Scar from 'The Lion King.' Robert Patrick from 'Terminator 2' – the T-1000. Probably Schwarzenegger from [the first] 'Terminator.' Iago, absolutely [from Shakespeare's 'Othello']. That’s a pretty awesome group of people."

If you plan to check out "The Avengers" at a midnight screening, share your iReport from the line, as well as your review of the movie. (Click below as well to hear iReporter Richard Crouse's interview with Ruffalo.)


soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Mira

    Chris Evans was the one who sent the Assemble sms not Hemsworth – it's been repeated so many times, you really should fix it.

    I loved the movie. I liked Loki in Thor but it was how he was written in Avengers that had me check out Tom Hiddleston as an actor. Thank you, Joss Whedon! :D You better write Avengers 2!

    May 24, 2012 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Sus

    I loved this movie. I was genuinely excited when I left the theater and I don't think I stopped grinning the entire film.

    Hiddleston is amazing as Loki (someone has to cheer for the anti-hero/villain) and in anything else he does. I can't wait to see more of him in other projects.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  3. Jon

    It was Chris Evans aka Captain America who sent the "Assemble" text. Makes alot more sense when you think about it. Cap was getting the crew together.

    May 9, 2012 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
  4. jesse

    Silly movie, wont give away spoiler, but once you see the movie you will realize they only needed one hero and the fight only last about 5 seconds. All that build up and a back story about black widow, once its over you'll realize Joss Whedon should stick with chick flick hero movies or tv shows like Buffy.

    May 8, 2012 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Guest

    WHY NO ANTMAN?!?

    May 8, 2012 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
  6. gah

    in most of the pictures of hiddleston i've seen of him not in character he has a huge smile that makes me wonder how on earth such a seemingly happy and nice guy could play such an evil character so well. either way, i thoroughly enjoyed Avengers and his portrayal of Loki

    May 7, 2012 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • jshillingford

      I could not agree more about how good Hiddleston's performance was. A superhero movie is only as good as it's villain, I think, and Loki more than met the bar on that.

      May 8, 2012 at 7:53 am | Report abuse |
  7. Scott

    I saw this on Tuesday at a premiere. It was AMAZING!! I was hoping it would not suck and be at best good, but it far exceeded my expectation and was GREAT! You must go see it on the big screen. I barely go out to the movies any more because I have a 3D TV at home. But this was worth it.
    And stay for the entire credits.

    May 4, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Leon David Peris

    This would make a super movie.

    May 3, 2012 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Michael Peter Caliazzo

    What a Great movie this would be.

    May 3, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Katie

    I'm genuinely excited for this film. I would have gone to see it no matter what, but reading about the camaraderie of the cast as well as seeing the glowing reviews has only increased my anticipation.

    May 3, 2012 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |

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