UNIVERSAL PICTURES BEGINS PRODUCTION
ON THE HULK, SET TO OPEN ON JUNE 20, 2003
Universal City, California,March 27, 2002
Universal Pictures has begun principal photography on "The Hulk," the feature film based upon one of Marvel Comics' most memorable and popular superhero series and directed by acclaimed filmmaker Ang Lee ("Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") from a screenplay by James Schamus. The film's producers are Gale Anne Hurd, Marvel Studios Chief Executive Officer Avi Arad, James Schamus and Larry Franco. Marvel Comics founder Stan Lee and Kevin Feige are the executive producers.
Eric Bana ("Chopper," "Black Hawk Down") stars as scientist Bruce Banner, whose inner demons transform him into The Hulk in the aftermath of a catastrophic experiment. Bana plays both the human Banner and -- through groundbreaking visual effects technology provided by the Oscar®-winning Industrial Light + Magic (ILM) -- the superhuman Hulk.
Jennifer Connelly, who just received the Academy Award® for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Alicia Nash in the Oscar®-winning "A Beautiful Mind" and won rave reviews for her performance as a hapless Coney Island resident in "Requiem For A Dream," portrays Betty Ross, whose scientific genius unwittingly helps unleash The Hulk, and whose love for Banner finds its impossible resolution in the film's denouement.
Sam Elliott, who recently starred opposite Mel Gibson as the no-nonsense Sgt. Maj. Basil Plumley in Randall Wallace's "We Were Soldiers," plays Betty's father, General Ross. Josh Lucas, who appeared opposite Connelly in "A Beautiful Mind" as Professor Martin Hansen, plays Glenn Talbot, a romantic and professional rival of Bruce Banner's. Academy Award® nominee Nick Nolte, whose recent credits include "Affliction" and "The Thin Red Line," plays a sinister figure who returns from Banner's past to haunt him.
Lee's behind-the-camera team includes cinematographer Fred Elmes ("The Ice Storm," "Wild at Heart," "Blue Velvet"), Academy Award® winning production designer Rick Heinrichs ("Planet of the Apes," "Sleepy Hollow," "The Big Lebowski," "Fargo"), costume designer Marit Allen ("Ride with the Devil," "Eyes Wide Shut," "Smilla's Sense of Snow") and editor Tim Squyres (all of Ang Lee's films and Robert Altman's "Gosford Park"). ILM's Dennis Muren, an eight-time Academy Award® winner for films including "E. T.: The Extra-Terrestrial," "The Abyss" and "Jurassic Park," will supervise visual effects.
Ang Lee's concept for the film combines all the elements of a blockbuster visual effects-intensive superhero movie with the brooding romance and tragedy of Universal's classic horror films -- for The Hulk is at once a superhero and a monster, a wish fulfillment and a nightmare. Lee and his team have gone back to the moving, early incarnations of the character created in May 1962 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, staying true to the subversive spirit of the early Marvel years, while completely updating and projecting The Hulk into the dangers and aspirations of contemporary times.
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