Everything about Marvel's The Avengers has been huge, which is why it's a little strange that Disney is now making some big decisions without a whole lot of fanfare. For starters, did you know The Avengers is coming back to theaters for a one-week engagement starting this weekend? Now you do. A day before it actually happens.
The reason behind the superhero bonanza's return to theaters is pretty transparent. Roughly $41 million is keeping The Avengers from taking Titanic's #2 spot at the top of the U.S. box office charts. So, in a last ditch dash to unseat James Cameron's film, Disney is sticking Joss Whedon's film back into theaters starting tomorrow, August 31. It is not returning, as several blockbusters have in the past, with new footage inserted into the film, but the Facebook announcement does tease "Don't forget to stay through the credits..." so perhaps they've added a new stinger at the end.
In less cooler news, Disney has quietly delayed the release of their elaborate Marvel Phase One Blu-ray box set, which would contain not only The Avengers, but the five standalone films that led up to it. The studio has yet to release an official statement on the delay (and our request for one went unanswered), but those who preordered the set on Amazon have received notices that their orders have been canceled and refunded. The product page now shows it as being completely unavailable.
The reason for the delay is most likely a lawsuit from a German luggage manufacturer who says that Marvel Studios did not license their briefcase design for use in merchandise. The studio had, however, gotten permission to use the suitcase in the film (it's what transports the Cosmic Cube), but housing this 10-disc Blu-ray set in a replica of said case is a trademark infringement and they're currently trying to settle the dispute.
Fortunately, this doesn't affect the September 25, 2012 release of The Avengers on Blu-ray, as that's just normal packaging. But if you were a collector hoping to get your hands on that sweet, movie-holding briefcase, you better hope that Disney pays whatever original manufacturer Rimowa GmbH is asking.