Incredible Hulk Director Gets Honest About Mark Ruffalo's 'Kiddish' New Hulk

By Savannah Sanders Posted:
Hulk MCU Marvel

According to The Incredible Hulk's director, his Hulk is "very far" from Mark Ruffalo's current version of the hero. 

Ruffalo's Bruce Banner may be one of the original Avengers; but back in 2008, it was Edward Norton who first played the angry green giant in the MCU's The Incredible Hulk

Since Ruffalo replaced Norton in 2012, the less-than-jolly green giant has evolved, with the latest version of the hero being Smart Hulk.

How Mark Ruffalo's Hulk Differs From Original Vision

Hulk in She-Hulk

In talking with, The Incredible Hulk's director, Louis Leterrier, discussed the various Hulk personas, including Mark Ruffalo's Smart Hulk who describes as a "bit more kiddish" than other characterizations:

"Hulk is a complex character within the Marvel Universe. You want the primeval Hulk... the rage Hulk. And then when you go Grey Hulk and Smart Hulk you lose that a little bit and you get a little bit more kiddish with it."

As for the "kiddish" description, Leterrier has a point. 

The simplicity of the raging Hulk from The Avengers and Captain America: Civil War produced a goofy and innocent personality for Smart Hulk, a stark contrast to Edward Norton's Hulk in 2008. 

As for those other versions of Hulks, Leterrier planned to utilize those characterizations in an unrealized sequel, acknowledging that "there's so many characters:" 

"But that was the fun of where I was in my movie, with the access to consciousness and all that stuff. That was really fun. And that's what I was aiming to do. But take my time with it. Because there's so many characters they want it all fast [laughs]."

But even so, there's no denying that Smart Hulk is a departure from Leterrier's original plan, saying, "yeah, we're very far from my Hulk:"

"I like 'She-Hulk,' but then you know, yoga between Hulk and... I was like 'Okay! yeah, we're very far from my Hulk.'"

Is Marvel Studios Taking Notes From Hulk Director?

Smart Hulk may be "kiddish" in comparison to Louis Leterrier's initial vision, but evidence suggests a version of the director's scrapped sequel may surface in 2024's Captain America: Brave New World

In addition to rumors of a Red Hulk, which Leterrier planned for his second Hulk film, Brave New World also stars Tim Blake Nelson as the Leader and who the director set up back in 2008.

The 2024 film is also confirmed to bring back Liv Tyler's Betty Ross, Bruce Banner's love interest from that early film. 

There's also talk that Ruffalo may finally follow in Edward Norton's footsteps and eventually star in a Hulk-centric film, namely World War Hulk

While all that remains to be seen, it does appear that the Hulk's past and present are coming together. 

And, even though the Marvel Studios' current take on the green guy contrasts with Louis Leterrier's, who's to say the Avenger won't continue to change, evolve, or even revert as the MCU moves forward?

The Incredible Hulk is available to stream now on Disney+; Captain America: Brave New World smashes into theaters on July 26, 2024. 

- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.