Concept art for long-already released Marvel movies continues to come out with the latest arriving from concept artist Phil Saunders who has revealed some unused designs for the titular villain in Avengers: Age of Ultron (H/T CBR). Among them is one of the looks for the character that he says was specifically asked for by writer/director Joss Whedon, who wanted more "grounded" technology incorporated into the design of the villain, specifically mechanisms like pistons and gears. Saunders notes that with this note "We ended up pursuing a direction that was frankly too ‘endoskeleton’ for my taste." Producer Kevin Feige apparently vetoed the design though and steered the team toward the look seen in the film.
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More #ultron from #avengers #ageofultron. Director Jos Whedon wanted more ‘grounded’ tech (read pistons and gears, etc.) than my earlier designs, so we ended up pursuing a direction that was frankly too ‘endoskeleton’ for my taste. Thankfully Keven Feige stepped in and steered us toward what made it to the screen, but for a while I got to paint some cool hardware! #marvel #marvelstudios #mcu #conceptdesign #conceptart #conceptartist #digitalart #digitalillustration #photoshop
Two more alternate designs were also revealed by Saunders with one being a very early draft of the character and another being scrapped but later repurposed for the structural design of Iron Man's Mark 50 armor in Avengers: Infinity War.
Though Marvel's never said if we'll see Ultron return in one form or another, they certainly have plenty of places where he could pop up. The studio's updated movie release schedule currently includes Black Widow on November 6, 2020, The Eternals on February 12, 2021, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on May 7, 2021, Marvel’s Spider-Man 3 on November 5, 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on February 11, 2022, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on March 25, 2022, Black Panther II on May 6, 2022, and Captain Marvel 2 on July 8, 2022. Disney+ also has The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, WandaVision, Loki, What If...? Hawkeye, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, and Moon Knight on the way.