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So here's the new (final?) AGE OF ULTRON poster, which looks about as generic as one can expect from a movie that has never once needed a poster or any kind of advertising to gaurantee a blockbuster opening. Truth be told, the Marvel movies have generally had pretty bland posters, the one exception possibly being the second one for FIRST AVENGER.
But whatever. Not a lot of new information get's conveyed upfront (Vision is still mostly obscured, if Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver eventually become not boring-looking we're not seeing what that looks like here) but the full credits at the bottom are telling a different story - maybe.
For starters, we finally get confirmation that Stellan Skarsgaard and Anthony Mackie are both in the cast - though who can say what exactly their roles will be (I'd like Falcon and War Machine to have at least one "Main Guys' Black Friends" side-eye moment.) Also Haly Atwell (Agent Carter) which is... interesting.
But the one sticking out to me? Additional music from Danny Elfman. What's that about?
Briefly: The "additional music/pieces" credit for scoring is generally only used when pieces of music from a different score (by a different composer) are showing up. Now, it's very plausible that the film is simply borrowing a piece of music just to use it (that happens - directors fall in love with temp-tracks all the time.) It's also possible that the credit refers to the use of an Oingo Boingo track, though the credit would generally be different for that.
The only character in this movie remotely previously associated with Elfman is Hulk, but that's because Elfman scored the 2003 Ang Lee version - if Marvel is going to reference a previously Hulk movie, it'd probably be the one they made that's still (technically) part of their continuity, right?
Either way, I'm sure the answer is pretty mundane. But thinking on it gave me a crazy idea that I now can't get out of my head without sharing it. So here goes. There's effectively maybe 0.000001% chance this would happen, but if I had my cosmic way over all such matters the reason a Danny Elfman track would show up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe would be to accompany the arrival a familiar hero with his familiar (Elfman composed) theme:
As in: Tobey Maguire as the now-adult Peter Parker from the Sam Raimi-directed, Elfman-scored SPIDER-MAN movies that pre-dated the now-aborted Andrew Garfield/magic blood/robo-rhino version.
Hear me out.
Here's what's known about the immediate future of the SPIDER-MAN movies: Marvel originally wanted to strike a deal to get him into the hero versus hero CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR movie in some capacity. The role is being recast not only younger, but with a rumored emphasis on possibly shaking up the franchise's ethnic status-quo with either a non-white Peter Parker or a movie debut for Miles Morales, the Black/Latino second Ultimate Spider-Man.
So, picture this scenario:
- Spider-Man shows up in AGE OF ULTRON. Doesn't have to be for the whole movie, just for a scene - maybe he's helping in a battle, maybe it's an "Oh hi guys!," something like that. He's NOT an Avengers-level hero, traditionally, so it makes sense he'd be operating on their periphery.
- When he shows up, he's accompanied by Elfman's familiar main theme and sounds a lot like Tobey Maguire. Just to get the audience thinking on those lines.
- At a certain point, Maguire (briefly) appears again as Peter Parker, with some sort of quick business (piece of costume sticking out?) and a reprise of the theme to indicate that, yes, this is not only Spider-Man but THAT specific version of Spider-Man, retroactively making the Raimi films (or just the first two, if you like) part of the MCU extended canon.
- Maguire-Spidey reappears as a full-blown supporting character in CIVIL WAR, where he fulfills much the same role as the comics re: joining Team Iron Man, revealing his identity to the public and coming to regret doing so. But this time, it goes much worse for him - he dies. Yes. Spider-Man (a hero still more familiar/loved worldwide than any of the MCU characters) buys it in CIVIL WAR. He can die heroically (Ooh! Maybe he takes the sniper-bullet for Captain America for the adaptation fake-out?) Tears, sadness, "This generation's Optimus Prime death," etc.
- Post-credits stinger for CIVIL WAR: Introduction of a seemingly random young kid who seems especially moved by the death of Spider-Man: Miles Morales.
- However many months later, Miles emerges as the main character of the new Marvel-But-We're-Pretending-Sony-Is-Making-Any-Meaningful-Decisions-About-This SPIDER-MAN movies; which can no procede with his supporting cast, origin, etc.
Would it work? Who knows. Maybe I'm nuts. But I'd be all over that, and not just because I more or less made it all up on the fly. But I'd argue it offers a lot of benefit: Marvel get's a huge WRATH OF KHAN moment for CA:CW without having to lose one of "their guys," Sony gets to re-issue full=-priced new Blu's of the Raimi Trilogy now that they're MCU building-blocks, picky fanboys get a "proper" MCU Parker at least for a moment, Miles Morales becomes a massively talked-about figure to a general public that never heard of him and Sony-But-Really-Marvel get's a fresh start for their new series that'll be covered as a colossal event for introducing who will immediately become (with apologies to T'Challa) THE Black Superhero.
Either way, we'll find out what really happens so enough. Unless Marvel just steals this idea.Which isn't going to happen.