Mark Ruffalo Gets Honest About His Anger Management Issues

By Gillian Blum Posted:
Hulk, Mark Ruffalo

Mark Ruffalo's spotlight panel at Emerald City Comic-Con has gifted fans with a lot of exciting behind-the-scenes tidbits and stories, now including a way the actor connects with his MCU character, the Hulk.

Ruffalo discussed his experience in the MCU in depth at ECCC, from his exclusion in Thor: Love and Thunder to replacing Edward Norton, and even a defense of his character's arc in Avengers: Infinity War.

Fans even got some unique insight into how Ruffalo relates to Bruce Banner as a man, comparing himself to his fictional counterpart.

What's Mark Ruffalo's Hulk Secret?

Hulk, Mark Ruffalo

At Emerald City Comic-Con, Mark Ruffalo discussed his own anger management issues that he's made strides to fix, reminiscent of his MCU role as the Hulk.

A fan asked at a Q&A what Ruffalo relates to most with his character, to which the actor explained that being told to control his anger "was my whole childhood and much of my teens:"

Q: "With playing the Hulk for such a long time, is there anything you relate to in any version of the Hulk on a personal level?"

Ruffalo: "'That’s my secret.' (laughs) I think we all probably– Little kids really relate to the Hulk, because… everyone’s always telling them, 'Don’t! Stop! Stop it! Don’t do that! You’ll break things! You’re out of control!' That was my whole childhood and much of my teens. That anger, that unexpressed anger, as nice as I might seem, my kids would probably tell you I could be angry. That’s always been something that I’ve related to, especially when I was younger. I mean, I’m getting older and mellower."

He then spoke about how when he was younger "there were holes in the wall from coffee mugs and fists from being rejected constantly, and just being angry:"

"But as a young actor, I told the story before, I had posters in the weirdest places in my apartment, because there were holes in the wall from coffee mugs and fists from being rejected constantly, and just being angry, and having to express that anger. So, I relate to that."

Back in 2012, Ruffalo expressed something similar to NME, saying "I’m no stranger to that kind of anger and rage," but emphasizing that he has grown and matured over time nonetheless.

"I’m no stranger to that kind of anger and rage, but over time, I’ve [become] like a rock that’s spent many times being tumbled around in the sea, I’ve sort of gotten the edges polished off of me. I’m not fighting the same fights that I was back then, the same demons."

What's Next for Hulk in the MCU?

Speculation about Ruffalo's next appearance as the Hulk — be it as the angry Hulk or the current Professor Hulk (officially Smart Hulk) version — is all over the place, from World War Hulk rumors to questions about a potential retirement.

Regardless, there are more Hulk-adjacent stories to come, with She-Hulk and Skaar now established in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, where fans last saw Bruce Banner.

Hulk himself also has many other versions fans would be interested in seeing, from a gray Hulk like Joe Fixit to Maestro from the comics.

Either way, fans who want their Hulk fix don't need to be angry, as She Hulk: Attorney at Law is currently streaming on Disney+. All of the Hulk's other appearances outside of The Incredible Hulk are also streaming there as well.

- About The Author: Gillian Blum

Gillian Blum has been a writer at The Direct since 2022, reporting primarily from New York City. Though she covers news from across the entertainment industry, Gillian has a particular focus on Marvel and DC, including comics, movies, and television shows. She also commonly reports on Percy Jackson, Invincible, and other similar franchises.