‘Avengers’ Star Mark Ruffalo Isn’t In ‘Cogan’s Trade’ And Won’t Film ‘The Normal Heart’ This Year

At long last, “The Avengers” are finally assembling. Mark Ruffalo, taking over the role of Bruce Banner from previous “Hulk” star Ed Norton, is about to get green and mean in front of cameras in New Mexico, an endeavor that’s bound to soak up much of his time over the next several months.

But Ruffalo, a man of many talents — his directorial debut “Sympathy for Delicious” hits theaters this weekend — has more on the horizon beyond the Marvel Studios epic. However, despite rumors to the contrary, those plans do not include “Cogan’s Trade,” the Brad Pitt-starring crime caper about a high stakes poker game gone wrong.

“That’s not true,” Ruffalo told MTV News of his reported involvement in the Andrew Dominik-directed film. “I don’t know why that’s [been reported]. That’s not happening. They’re already shooting that. It’s almost done, actually.”

Ruffalo addressed another long-developing project as well: “The Normal Heart,” an adaptation of Larry Kramer’s semi-autobiographical stage play about the rise of HIV-AIDS in New York City in the 1980s. The actor told us last June that he had signed on for the project alongside “Glee” mastermind Ryan Murphy, but things look a bit more tentative now.

“I don’t know if that’s going to happen this year. That’s kind of been put on the backburner,” he said, adding that he’s heard nothing but rave reviews for the ongoing Broadway revival of the stage play.

And speaking of the stage, Ruffalo said that he’d love to get himself back into the theater. Though his career as a film actor and director is blossoming, Ruffalo declared his passion for stage-work in appropriately dramatic fashion: “I keep telling my wife that I’m either going to die in her arms or on the stage. It’s kind of sad, but romantic a little bit!”

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