'Avengers' is cherry on Disney's sundae

Two years ago at Comic-Con in San Diego, Marvel Studios assembled its cast of superheroes for “The Avengers” and officially announced Joss Whedon as the tentpole’s helmer. Whedon left the stage telling fans, “I have had a dream all my life and it was not this good. I’m going to blow it. I’m very nervous.”

At the April 11 preem for the film that stars Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hems-worth), the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) — all introduced in previous pics — Whedon could finally let out a sigh of relief. “I forgot to fail,” he said outside Hollywood’s El Capitan.

The pic assembles Marvel’s biggest superheroes and villains in a single summer tentpole. “A lot of people told us it would be impossible,” said Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige. “But we kept our heads down and made the movies we wanted to make.”

To have “The Avengers” is just “the cherry on top of the sundae,” said Walt Disney Studios’ Rich Ross. “It’s incredible to see this cast assembled.”

Feige sees “The Avengers” as the first of a franchise. “Remember, this is ‘Avengers 1,’ ” he said, referring to clever dealmaking that locked down the cast for at least eight films.

Feige and Whedon know how to keep the fans happy.

“I read the websites, I read the blogs, but we believe we are the fanbase,” Feige said.

Whedon agreed, adding, “Everyone has different opinions, but I grew up reading ‘The Avengers.’ I am the fanbase. I’m the guy I need to please. If it wasn’t good, I’d be pissed.”

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