She-Hulk Finale Almost Brought Back Edward Norton As The Hulk

She-Hulk director Kat Coiro revealed that Edward Norton was considered to be brought back for the She-Hulk finale in a swap-out with current Hult actor, Mark Ruffalo.

By Charlene Badasie | Published

The creative minds behind She-Hulk: Attorney at Law considered bringing Edward Norton back for a season finale cameo. The revelation was made by series director Kat Coiro in an interview with The Direct, where she said it was a very real possibility. “There was a lot of talk about the fact that the last time they were together a different actor was playing the Hulk,” she told the publication. “And we did entertain the idea of swapping Mark out. But that did not come to pass.”

In the finale, titled “Whose Show Is This?” a chaotic fight scene brings several of Jen Walters’ friends and enemies together in a massive brawl. This includes a rematch between Bruce Banner/Hulk and Emil Blonsky/Abomination who first faced off in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk starring Edward Norton. While his performance was hailed by fans, the actor walked away from the role due to creative differences with Marvel Studios.

At the time, Kevin Feige issued a statement about Edward Norton’s recasting. He explained that the studio decided to go with an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of the other talented cast members. “The Avengers demands players who thrive when working as part of an ensemble,” the Marvel boss said. “This is evidenced by Robert, Chris H, Chris E, Sam, Scarlett, and all of our talented casts.”

edward norton
Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk

After Edward Norton parted ways with Marvel, Mark Ruffalo took over as the Hulk in 2012’s The Avengers. He has played the character in all subsequent appearances. And while the cameo never materialized, She-Hulk did reference the casting change in its second episode.

While telling Jen about the last time he fought Blonsky, Bruce says he was a “completely different person” back then, prompting his cousin to break the fourth wall to laugh at the inside joke. Interestingly, bringing back Edward Norton as the Hulk could still be a possibility. He could appear as Multiversal Hulk in the highly anticipated Avengers: Secret Wars, or as a version of Bruce Banner without any powers.

But it’s unlikely that the acclaimed actor would be interested in reuniting with the studio that fired him from the franchise after just one outing. And based on Feige’s previous comments, the former Marvel actor may have been difficult to work with. The Incredible Hulk star was reportedly controlling on set and insisted on rewriting parts of the script himself, behavior that Marvel Studios did not tolerate.

So it’s not surprising that the She-Hulk team didn’t get their cameo. The risk of having those problems repeated was probably too high. Not to mention that having Edward Norton appear in a minor role would require a larger salary budget for the Disney+ series.

Had Edward Norton been a team player, it wouldn’t have been the first time an MCU title brought back an actor to reprise their role. WandaVision saw Evan Peters appear as Pietro Maximoff/Quicksilver after playing the character in the X-Men franchise. He replaced Aaron Taylor-Johnson from Avengers: Age of Ultron. Additionally, Spider-Man: No Way Home famously brought Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s web-slingers to team up with Tom Holland’s version of the superhero.