The Avenger: Handy with a bow and arrow, Hawkeye is so called because he pretty much never misses his target.
Team History: Hawkeye’s been an Avengers team member since 1965, and has contributed to various incarnations of the team over the years – including the New Avengers and Secret Avengers.
This guy just loves avenging.
Movie Version: After appearing briefly in Thor (2011), Hawkeye became a full-fledged Avenger in Avengers Assemble , only briefing becoming a brainwashed slave to Loki.
He kicks considerably booty in the film’s city-trashing climax, living up to his superhero moniker.
The Avenger: All-American hero whose costume, naturally, comes in red, white and blue. Basically, he’s a super-soldier. Oh, and he has a natty shield that he likes throwing around.
Team History: Though he wasn’t part of the founding team, Captain America was later attributed with a retroactive ‘founder’ status when he became leader of the Avengers.
Movie Version: Chris Evans played both the geeky and the gargantuan versions of Captain America in his first big screen outing, avoiding making the hero into a bland goody two-shoes by playing up his emotional vulnerabilities.
Avengers Assemble gave him some great modern day confusion (“I understood that reference!”), while Captain America: The Winter Soldier was an awesome mash of ’70s paranoid thriller and comic-book movie. In Cap we trust.
The Avenger: The tempestuous Asgardian and son of Odin. Wears wings on his helmet and likes to smash things with his giant hammer. Oh, and he’s a god.
Team History: In the comics, Thor co-founded the Avengers in 1963. He’s been a longstanding member ever since.
Movie Version: Looks exactly like Chris Hemsworth. So far, Thor’s appeared in three Marvel flicks – two solo films and Avengers Assemble.
His solo flicks have been responsible for successfully uniting action cinema with Shakespearean melodrama, mostly thanks to Kenneth Branagh and Hemsworth’s brilliant comic timing.
The Avenger: Not so much a friendly green giant as a really flipping angry one, Hulk is what Dr Bruce Banner turns into whenever he sees red. He likes to smash things.
Team History: Though the other Avengers were responsible for helping co-found the team, it was an attack on Hulk that prompted it.
When Loki attempted to trick Hulk into attacking Thor, the attack resulted in the formation of the Avengers. Hurrah!
Movie Version: Three actors have played Hulk on-screen in the past two decades – Eric Bana, Edward Norton and Mark Ruffalo.
Only Ruffalo really got it right (in Avengers Assemble ), mostly thanks to Joss Whedon, who nailed the character. All hail Ruffalo. We love him when he’s angry.
The Avenger: A Russian spy called Natasha Rominoff, who was introduced as an enemy of Iron Man. Rominoff soon became an ally and started calling herself Black Widow. Because why not?
Team History: Black Widow originally joined the Avengers as a ‘reserve member’ in 1973 before going on to become a key member of SHIELD’s Secret Avengers.
Movie Version: Iron Man 2 cast Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow and got her to do some cool flippy moves in the black catsuit.
It wasn’t until Avengers Assemble that we really got to see what she was made of, though. Surprisingly funny, she goes up against mobsters, Hulk and even Loki single-handedly. Badass.
The Avenger: A neurosurgeon who also moonlights as the Sorcerer Supreme – which is a fancy way of saying he protects the planet from mystical evil.
Team History: Though he’s now more associated with the Illuminati (a secret organisation that Strange co-founded to protect the Earth), Doctor Strange has also been a member of the New Avengers.
Movie Version: Has any other character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe been through quite as much of a torturous to-and-fro as Doctor Strange?
Well, no. What you need to know: Scott Derrickson has signed on to direct a Doctor Strange movie, with a lead yet to be announced.
Do we want Johnny Depp? He’s less bankable than he used to be (and might be considered too old), but it’d be interesting to see what he’d do with the role…
The Avenger: One of the angriest damn mutants you’ll ever meet. A self-healing, mutton-chopped wunderkind who ages slower than most people, Wolverine has retractable claws and an adamantium skeleton. And a whole lotta rage.
Team History: Wolverine enlisted with the Avengers in 2005 issue New Avengers #6. He became a regular player for three years in the 2010-2013 comic series of Avengers and New Avengers.
Movie Version: Hugh Jackman’s set the record for playing a superhero the greatest number of times – so far he’s reached seven, and he’s showing no sign of slowing down.
Also, he wants a Wolverine appearance in an Avengers movie. “I think it’d be fantastic,” he’s said. “I loved The Avengers .”
The Avenger: First appearing in the Marvel pages in 1972, Luke Cage is a superhuman with impenetrable skin and an accelerated healing ability. His real talent, though, lies in his supreme fighting prowess.
Team History: Cage is currently the leader of the Mighty Avengers, having been recruited to the team by Captain America. Needless to say, he’s one awesome leader.
Movie Version: John Singleton is set to direct the movie version of Luke Cage, though an actor’s yet to be cast in the role.
Idris Elba’s expressed an interest, though, and we can’t imagine anybody better suited to the role. Let’s make this happen…
The Avenger: Also known as scientist Dr Henry Pym, who created a special substance that enabled him to shrink down to the size of (you guessed it) an ant. Naturally, he uses that power to fight evil.
Team History: Ant-Man was the one who came up with the idea of uniting superheroes into a team. Clever clogs.
Since then he’s been the leader of the Avengers AI and the Avengers Academy. Eat your heart out, Professor X.
Movie Version: In a somewhat left-field bit of casting, Paul Rudd will play the movie version of Ant-Man, and we can’t think of anybody better suited to the role.
He won’t be directed by Edgar Wright, though. The director dropped out over script concerns…
The Avenger: The superhero alter ego of billionaire playboy Tony Stark. Iron Man’s exo-suit gives him an insane amount of power. It also means he can fly.
Team History: Alongside Thor, Wasp and Ant-Man, Iron Man was a founding member of the Avengers. He even donated his Manhattan mansion to the team as its base.
Movie Version: When Robert Downey Jr was cast as Iron Man, there were guffaws and gulps of apprehension.
How times have changed. Bringing a whipsmart sense of fun to Stark (a character who, let’s face it, could have been REALLY boring), he’s the face of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and we can’t get enough of him.