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Hugo Weaving has said that while he would have been up for reprising his role as Red Skull in Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame, Marvel proved 'impossible' to negotiate with.
Weaving was the villain in 2011 movie Captain America: The First Avenger, and was all up for making a comeback in the final two chapters.
The Russo brothers also confirmed he'd been approached, but it was not known why he didn't end up in the finished movies, until now.
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He told Time Out: “Oh, yeah. I loved playing that character Red Skull – it was a lot of fun. We were all obliged to sign up for three pictures: I was thinking [Red Skull] probably wouldn’t come back in Captain America but he may well come back as a villain in The Avengers.
“By then, they’d pushed back on the contracts that we agreed on and so the money they offered me for The Avengers was much less than I got for the very first one, and this was for two films. And the promise when we first signed the contracts was that the money would grow each time.
“They said: 'It’s just a voice job, it’s not a big deal'. I actually found negotiating with them through my agent impossible. And I didn’t really wanna do it that much. But I would have done it.”
Instead, actor Ross Marquand, of The Walking Dead fame, voices the character in Infinity War and Endgame, in the pivotal scenes on Vormir, with the character being rendered in CGI.
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Weaving also spoke about not appearing in the new Matrix movie too, though added that while he'd have been up for that too, he'd already committed to appearing on stage at the National Theatre at the same time.
“I was in touch with [director] Lana Wachowski, but in the end she decided that the dates weren’t going to work,” he added. “So we’d sorted the dates and then she sort of changed her mind. They’re pushing on ahead without me.”
Weaving played the original villain of the trilogy, Agent Smith, pursuer of Keanu Reeves’ Neo.
Wachowski is soon to roll cameras on the long-awaited fourth movie in the series, some 17 years after Matrix Revolutions in 2003, with Reeves returning alongside Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity, with Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Jessica Henwick and Neil Patrick Harris also on the bill.
It is due to premiere in May, 2021.