Ed Norton, The Incredible Hulk

Universal Pictures

Looks like Edward Norton isn't so incredible after all.

Marvel Studios confirms that it's searching for a new actor to play Dr. Bruce Banner/the Incredible Hulk in Joss Whedon's highly anticipated summer 2012 blockbuster The Avengers. Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth have already joined the cast.

Norton starred as the hotheaded Hulk in the studio's 2008 hit The Incredible Hulk and was expected to reprise the role for the star-studded superhero flick.

What's most incredible, perhaps, is the studio's reason for giving Norton the boot.

"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," said Marvel Studios President of Production Kevin Feige in a statement. "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."


Fired or not, we're pretty sure Ed's turning into the Hulk right about now.

(Originally published July 11, 2010, at 1:45 p.m. PT)


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