James Spader will face off against Earth's Mightiest Heroes as the villain in Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron," the sequel to 2012's record-breaking "Marvel's The Avengers." The Emmy Award-winning actor will play Ultron in the Avengers' much anticipated return to the big screen from writer/director Joss Whedon. The film comes to theaters on May 1, 2015.
Spader earned three Emmy Awards for his role as Alan Shore on "Boston Legal" and "The Practice," and will return to television this fall in NBC's highly anticipated series "The Blacklist." Most recently Spader was seen in the critically-acclaimed film "Lincoln" directed by Steven Spielberg and has previously worked with a long list of accomplished film directors including David Cronenberg, Curtis Hansen, Sidney Lumet, Mike Nichols, Tim Robbins, Robert Rodriguez, Steven Soderbergh, and Oliver Stone. David Mamet also directed Spader in the Broadway play Race.
"Avengers: Age of Ultron" will bring the Marvel Universe's biggest heroes together again to face one of their biggest villains, with "Marvel's The Avengers" director Joss Whedon returning to write and direct the sequel. "Marvel's The Avengers" was released in 2012 and went on to earn $1.5 billion worldwide, making it the third-largest grossing movie of all time.
Spader is represented by ICM Partners and his lawyer Melanie Cook at Ziffren Brittenham.
In the comics, Ultron is a highly evolved super android created by founding Avenger Henry Pym (Yellow-Jacket, Giant-Man/Ant-man), and is one of the Avengers most famous villains. Since the upcoming Ant-man movie being adapted by Edgar Wright is slated to be released in Marvel’s Phase III set of movies the origin of Ultron is expected to be altered for the Avengers sequel.
For the Avengers: Age of Ultron it is highly assumed Ultron will be designed by Tony Stark, based on the Comic-Con teaser trailer and rumored plot concept implying Ultron could be an upgraded version of Stark’s current AI partner JARVIS.
"I knew right away what I wanted to do with him," Whedon recently told Entertainment Weekly. "He's always trying to destroy the Avengers, godd--- it, he’s got a bee in his bonnet. He's not a happy guy, which means he’s an interesting guy. He’s got pain. And the way that manifests is not going to be standard robot stuff. So we’ll take away some of those powers because at some point everybody becomes magic."
No word yet on whether Spader will be doing motion capture, or just voicing the villain. With the movie making slight alterations to Ultron's origins there could be the possibility Spader could play an Ultron with flesh and blood.