Marvel confirms the news to HitFix.com, after the site broke the rumour yesterday
Marvel has confirmed that Edward Norton, who played Bruce Banner and his big, green alter ego in The Incredible Hulk , will not be returning to the role in The Avengers . That doesn’t mean the Hulk won’t be in The Avengers ; what it means is that Marvel is recasting.
The story was broken by HitFix yesterday, and Marvel later responded in a statement from Marvel Studios President of Production Kevin Feige to the website:
“We have made the decision to not bring Ed Norton back to portray the title role of Bruce Banner in The Avengers . Our decision is definitely not one based on monetary factors, but instead rooted in the need for an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members. The Avengers demands players who thrive working as part of an ensemble, as evidenced by Robert, Chris H, Chris E, Sam, Scarlett, and all of our talented casts. We are looking to announce a name actor who fulfills these requirements, and is passionate about the iconic role in the coming weeks.”
All of which seems to be a coded way of saying, “he an awkward so-and-so to work with”.