'Mother' thesp tapped to join Marvel superheroes

Marvel Studios has decided to recruit Cobie Smulders for “The Avengers,” the actioner that will team up superheroes Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, the Hulk and Hawkeye for summer 2012.

Smulders, best known as a regular on CBS’ comedy “How I Met Your Mother,” is wrapping up a deal to star in the pic that Joss Whedon is writing and starts helming sometime in April, while “Mother” is on hiatus.

Disney releases “The Avengers” on May 4, 2012.

Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L. Jackson are the leads in the ensemble.

Smulder’s deal would integrate her S.H.I.E.L.D agent character in nine films, as is typical for actors landing roles in Marvel’s pics. Character would work closely with Jackson’s Nick Fury, and eventually becomes the head of the espionage and law enforcement group.

Pic would mark Smulder’s first major film outing. She had once been considered for Whedon’s adapation of “Wonder Woman” at Warner Bros.

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