- Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow
Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow
DVD cover art for Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow
Directed by Jay Oliva
Produced by Gary Hartle
Eric S. Rollman
Screenplay by Christopher Yost Story by Greg Johnson
Music by Guy Michelmore Editing by George P. Rizkallah Studio Marvel Animation
Distributed by Lions Gate Entertainment Release date(s) September 2, 2008 Running time 78 minutes Country United States
Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow is a direct-to-video animated film. It is fifth in a series of animated films from Marvel Animation, based on Marvel Comics by Lions Gate Entertainment. It was released on DVD and Blu-ray on September 2, 2008. The project was originally announced under the title Teen Avengers and later changed to Avengers Reborn. It was then referred to as Next Avengers before being given its full title. A preview of the film (under the Avengers Reborn title) was included on the DVD of the Doctor Strange: The Sorcerer Supreme animated film. It is the first of the Marvel animated films to be rated PG as opposed to PG-13.
A battle with Ultron leaves The Avengers defeated, with six of the heroes killed during the fight, and the world at the mercy of Ultron's machine army. Iron Man / Tony Stark is told by Captain America to take the Avengers' children to an underground fortified refuge hidden above the Arctic Circle. The children are James Rogers (son of Black Widow and Captain America), Henry Pym Jr. (son of Giant-Man and Wasp), Azari (son of Black Panther and Storm), and Torunn (daughter of Thor and Sif).
Stark secretly raises and trains the children for 12 years. One day The Vision arrives at the refuge after hiding for over a decade from Ultron. He has come to inform Stark that Francis Barton, son of Hawkeye, is also alive.
While the curious children are eavesdropping on Stark and the Vision, James accidentally activates a series of Iron Man-style robots, called the Iron Avengers, that mimic the looks and abilities of Captain America, Hawkeye, Black Panther, Thor, Black Widow and Giant Man. Because they are programed to defeat Ultron upon activation, they take off to do so, whereupon they are detected by Ultron's worldwide sensors, revealing the location of the refuge. Ultron proceeds to the refuge and invades it. Stark, now dressed as Iron Man, is able to stall Ultron long enough for the children to escape, but he is eventually subdued and captured. Ultron is also able to reprogram the Iron Avenger robots to follow his commands.
Sneaking into Ultra City to rescue Stark, the four young Avengers run into Francis Barton, Hawkeye's son. They decide to team up with him, and his group of resistance fighters, to rescue their guardian.
The five manage to escape with Stark from Ultron's trap in his citadel, and they head to the desert, along with an older Betty Ross, where Bruce Banner (The Hulk) has decided to hide out and keep away from other people for their own safety. After he refuses to help them, James comes up a plan to lure Ultron there so he can cause the Hulk to appear, destroying the robot.
The young Avengers fight a losing battle with the mechanical doubles of their parents, but they manage to awaken the Hulk, who defeats the Iron Avengers and ultimately destroys Ultron, ripping him in two. Ultron begins to rebuild himself, so Torunn decides to carry his body into space, throwing the two pieces in opposite directions, ensuring that he cannot rebuild himself. She nearly suffocates and freezes in the process, resulting in her father, Thor, rescuing her and explaining why he left her on Earth. Thor invites Torunn to join him in Asgard, but Torunn chooses instead to return to her family on Earth. As a parting gift, Thor sends her back to Earth in full Asgardian armor.
With Ultron finally defeated, the five young Avengers prepare to return to Ultra City, to deal with Ultron's remaining forces and rescue the populace.
Cast and characters
- James Rogers (Noah C. Crawford): Son of Captain America and the Black Widow and leader of the teenage Avengers. Named after Captain America's sidekick Bucky, he has inherited the exceptional fighting abilities, agility and reflexes of his father and mother. James originally had a wrist bracer designed by Tony Stark which could generate an energy-based shield that looked like Captain America's shield, which he used in the same manner as his father had. When his wrist bracer got destroyed by Iron Widow, James regains his father's shield after destroying his robotic copy. Like his father, James has great difficulty remaining passive and shows a great sense of responsibility once he becomes aware of the seriousness of a situation. He has a hidden crush on Torunn.
- Torunn (Brenna O'Brien): Daughter of Thor and Sif who possesses the innate powers of superhuman strength, resillience to physical damage and flight shared by all Asgardians. As a weapon, she wields a magical Asgardian sword much like her mother's. Like her father's hammer Mjolnir, the sword bears an enchantment which recognizes Torunn as its only user, and it also has the power to control thunder and lightning.
Initially Torunn tries to act as "Asgardian" as she can - that is, launch herself straight into the thick of battle without considering the consequences - hoping it will make her father take notice of her, but in reality she is very insecure since while her brothers are orphans, Thor apparently just abandoned her. Torunn eventually becomes humble as the story progresses. She has a crush on James Rogers and hints about it throughout the film, though neither ever openly admit as much.
- Azari (Dempsey M. Pappion): Son of Black Panther and Storm (who is not mentioned by name in the movie). Azari inherited his father's enhanced senses, agility and martial skills, and from his mother's side displays the ability to generate and manipulate powerful electric fields. Named after his paternal great-grandfather, Azari is the most orderly and level-headed of the young Avengers and often tries to get the others to follow Tony's orders (unlike his father, who was known for disagreeing with Stark), though he eventually ends up joining his friends in disobeying them in favor of better interests.
- Pym (Aidan Drummond): Pym's full name is Henry Pym, Jr., son of Giant Man and Wasp, and youngest and smartest of the five children. He has the ability to change to tiny or giant size, and has inherited his mother's ability to shoot energy stings. When he shrinks, he grows wasp wings which allow him flight; when fully grown, he gains proportional strength and durability. Pym is the resident tech-head of the group, able to figure out complex devices quite easily.
- Francis Barton (Adrian Petriw): Son of Hawkeye and Mockingbird. Unlike the other Avenger children, Francis was accidentally left behind following the Avengers' final fight with Ultron and grew up as a fugitive in Ultra City, where he became the leader for a group of human refugees known as the Scavengers. Francis displays exceptional accuracy with his longbow and carries a quiver with explosive and trick arrows. Much like their fathers, Francis and James argue with each other at first, but eventually become friends. At first he seems cold and indifferent to his new friends, but as time passes, he shows himself to be just as much the jokester and flirt as Hawkeye was. He also expresses closer interest in Torunn.
- Iron Man / Tony Stark (Tom Kane): Surviving Avenger. The original builder of Ultron. Following the Avengers defeat, Tony gathered their children and hid them away in the Arctic, seeking redemption for his greatest mistake by trying to keep the children safe in memory of their parents and his friends.
- The Vision (Shawn MacDonald): Surviving Avenger. Using his ability to remain intangible, Vision acted as Tony's spy for keeping track of Ultron's progress in subjugating it. The Vision returned because Ultron had found a way to defeat his intangible state and wounded him severely. Tony did not have time to repair his body, and the kids end up carrying around his head until the end of the film.
- Thor (Michael Adamthwaite): The Norse God of Thunder, and surviving Avenger. After his father Odin died, Thor went back to Asgard to rule, leaving his daughter Torunn in the care of the Avengers. Thor appears at the end of the film to rescue Torunn from dying in outer space by transporting her to the Bifrost Bridge and welcoming her to Asgard after she has discovered the human side of her nature.
- Betty Ross (Nicole Oliver): Daughter of General Thaddeus "Thunderbolt" Ross and love interest of Bruce Banner / The Hulk. She has remained alive by hiding with the human survivors of New York whom Hawkeye and his son had gathered.
- Bruce Banner (Ken Kramer) / The Hulk (Fred Tatasciore): Bruce Banner has remained alive under Ultron's rule by hiding in the desert and avoiding any contact with others to keep his emotions (and thus, the Hulk) in check. The only person capable of controlling his rage is Betty Ross. Since Bruce Banner proved unwilling to help defeat Ultron, James Rogers devises a plan which eventually leaves the Hulk no choice but to participate in the fight.
- Jocasta (Nicole Oliver): The A.I. computer of Tony Stark's refuge for the children.
- Ultron (Tom Kane): The main antagonist. Tony Stark created Ultron to be a force for peace, but its programming evolved and Ultron eventually decided to take over the Earth. It attacked the Avengers, killing most (Captain America, Wasp, Hawkeye, Black Panther, Storm, Giant-Man, and Black Widow), and set out to conquer the world.
- Iron Avengers: A team of robotic replicas of the Avengers (excluding Iron Man himself) based on the technology of the Iron Man armor, created by Tony Stark both as a tribute to the Avengers' tradition and as aides in an eventual confrontation with Ultron. However, Ultron uses a computer virus to make them his pawns. All Iron Avengers are capable of jet-powered flight and possess superhuman strength and resilience due to their robotic structures.
- Iron Captain America: The field leader of the Iron Avengers, and the only one shown to be capable of speaking. Iron Captain America wields two shields in the movie, the first a newer version that could slice through almost anything. In the attack on the citadel the first shield is destroyed by acid, so in the desert battle he wears the original Captain America shield. Iron Captain America was destroyed by James when the young Avenger cut the robot in two with his father's shield.
- Iron Black Widow: Iron Widow can switch her hands for inbuilt guns and has an extra pair of arms. She was destroyed by the Hulk in the final confrontation.
- Iron Black Panther: Iron Panther has the martial arts skill, instincts and agility of the real Black Panther of the Avengers. He has the ability to transform into a robotic panther. It was destroyed when Azari used his electrical abilities to blast the robot.
- Iron Giant-Man: Iron Giant Man is the biggest of the Iron Avengers, standing approximately 60 feet tall (unlike the original Giant Man, it is incapable of changing its size). Like the real Giant Man, it's very strong and durable, and it could additionally fire energy blasts from its forehead. It also stored several Iron Wasps (see below) within its torso cavity to act as auxiliary units. Iron Giant Man was destroyed when the Hulk tore off his head.
- Iron Thor: Iron Thor is the only Iron Avenger that mimics a living Avenger. The robot was destroyed when Torunn stabbed it in the stomach and ripped it in half.
- Iron Hawkeye: The Iron Hawkeye's hands are fitted with fold-out bow-like devices which fire energy-charged projectiles. Francis destroyed Iron Hawkeye by shooting explosive arrows in the robot's feet, back and face.
- Iron Wasps: Robotic versions of the original Wasp which were stored in the Iron Giant Man and acted as its auxiliary units. The wasps could be released from Iron Giant Man's mouth and attack by shooting energy blasts like the real Wasp. The Iron Wasps were eliminated by the Hulk after they tried to exterminate his human form.
- Ultra City Drones: Ultron's servants in Ultra City, acting as Ultron's guards, enforcers and eliminators.
The Next Avengers made their comic book debut in Avengers #1, as part of Marvel's Heroic Age event. In the preview, the team is shown fighting Immortus. This reality has been designated as Earth-555326.
They appear in the first six issues of the Avengers (2010), but play a small role. When the current Avengers travel forward in time, they are knocked out by the Next Avengers and brought to Hulk and Iron Man. Later, they perform recon work, and witness the defeat of Ultron by Kang and his Legion. Finally, they kill Immortus after he murders their reality's version of Stark and Hulk.
The movie met with mostly mixed reviews. It holds a 6.4 rating at the Internet Movie Database.
- ^ "Marvel Animation Age - "Next Avengers" To Be Released In September 2008". Marvel.toonzone.net. http://marvel.toonzone.net/news.php?action=fullnews&id=13. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
- ^ "Preview: Avengers #1". Comic Book Resources. 2010-05-19. http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=5187&disp=table. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
- ^ Avengers #001-007 2010
- Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow at the Internet Movie Database
- Official site
- Next Avengers @ Marvel Animation Age
- IGN interview mentioning the film
- First Look: Avengers Reborn
Avengers Creators Comic book titlesCurrentPreviousLimitedOther continuities Initial characters Members lists EnemiesBaron Zemo • Collector • Count Nefaria • Egghead • Grandmaster • Graviton • Grim Reaper • Immortus • Kang • Korvac • Legion of the Unliving • Lethal Legion • Loki • Master Pandemonium • Masters of Evil • Morgan le Fay • Nebula • Space Phantom • Super-Adaptoid • Supreme Intelligence • Squadron Sinister • Taskmaster • Thanos • Ultron • Zodiac • Revengers Headquarters Storylines In other mediaTelevisionThe Avengers: United They Stand • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest HeroesFilmVideo games Alternative versions Book:The Avengers Live-action films based on Marvel Comics Single films Film series Blade Daredevil Fantastic Four Ghost RiderGhost Rider • Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance Cinematic Universe Iron ManIron Man • Iron Man 2 Others Men in Black The Punisher Spider-Man X-Men See also Marvel Animation Animated Features Television seriesCurrent seriesIron Man: Armored Adventures (episodes) • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes (episodes • characters)Former seriesUpcoming seriesUltimate Spider-Man (2011) • Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. (In development) Series GroupsMarvel Anime (episodes) • Marvel Knights Animation Parent: Marvel Studios (Marvel Entertainment) Web site: Marvel.com
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