Avengers, Marvel’s The (film) When an unexpected enemy, led by Loki, an exiled Norse god, emerges to threaten global safety and security, Nick Fury, Director of the international peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., finds himself in need of a team to pull the world back from the brink of disaster. Spanning the globe, a daring recruitment effort begins. The resulting super hero team of a lifetime, named The Avengers, consists of Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Hawkeye, and Black Widow. Released in 3D and IMAX on May 4, 2012, after an initial release in Australia, France, and other countries on April 25. Directed by Joss Whedon. Stars Robert Downey, Jr. (Tony Stark/Iron Man), Chris Evans (Steve Rogers/Captain America), Mark Ruffalo (Bruce Banner/The Hulk), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Scarlett Johansson (Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow), Jeremy Renner (Clint Barton/Hawkeye), Tom Hiddleston (Loki), Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury), Gwyneth Paltrow (Pepper Potts). 143 min. Based on the Marvel comic book series, “The Avengers,” first published in 1963. From Marvel Studios; distributed by Disney.