James Spader Talks THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, What Attracted Him to the Marvel Franchise, and Working Around His Schedule for THE BLACKLIST

     September 30, 2013


Earlier today, Collider was able to participate in a conference call with actor James Spader for his new edge-of-your-seat drama series The Blacklist, which airs on Monday nights on NBC.  Naturally, during the interview, talk briefly turned to his upcoming role as the villain Ultron for the sequel, The Avengers: Age of Ultron.  While we will run what he had to say about his work on The Blacklist, and what drew him to that role, we wanted to be sure to share what he had to say about how he ended up as part of the Marvel universe.

When asked about what made him want to sign on, James Spader talked about how he first met Kevin Feige a couple of years ago with the desire to become a part of the Marvel world, having been a fan of comic books as a kid, his sons’ interest in comics, and how Joss Whedon told him that he wasn’t thinking about anybody else for the role.  He also said he hopes for a smooth transition between when he finishes The Blacklist and when he goes off to London to shoot The Avengers 2.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

james-spader-the-avengers-age-of-ultronQuestion: What intrigued you about working with Joss Whedon and The Avengers team?  What was the hook that made you want to get involved?

JAMES SPADER:  Well, I had met with Kevin Feige a couple of years ago and just told him that I would love to come into that world, at some point, if the circumstances were right.  It was for a lot of reasons.  There was a time in my life where I used to go over to my friend Will’s house when I was kid and I never had any comic books in my house, but he had trunk loads of them.  I used to go over there and bury myself in his room with his comics and devour them.  And then, I put that down in my life.  I have three sons and a couple of them, along the way, have shown a real keen interest in that world.  So, before it was too late, I wanted to try to see if I could be part of that. 

One of the great luxuries, as an actor, is that you’re able to participate in projects where the process of making the thing or the world you’re entering is so foreign to you, and that foreign world, in many cases, forces you to work in an entirely different way.  The challenge becomes so different, and I was intrigued by that.  I’ve been doing this a long time, and it seemed like it would be great fun to do something that I have no frame of reference for.  So, the right thing came along and Kevin Feige called me up and said, “I found the thing.”  And Joss Whedon gave me a call and said he really wasn’t thinking about anybody else for it and he thought it would be great fun to do.  So, here we go. 

As exciting as your Ultron role is, in The Avengers 2, how is that going to impact your involvement with The Blacklist?  How will the schedule work out?

SPADER: I’m hoping that it’s gonna be a fairly smooth transition, but I don’t know.  We’ll wait and see how long The Blacklist plays, and whether it plays a full season or not.  If it plays a full season, then I’m sure I will be packing my bags on the last few days of our production on The Blacklist, in preparation to get over to London to start shooting The Avengers.  


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