Whedon suits up to write, direct 'Avengers' sequel

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Joss Whedon has been hired on again as boss of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and their superhero pals for a sequel to "The Avengers."

The news came Tuesday from Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Officer Robert Iger, who said during a company earnings call that the filmmaker is returning to write and direct the sequel adapted from the Marvel Comics tales.

Iger also said Whedon is helping to develop a Marvel-based TV series for ABC. Marvel is a Disney subsidiary.

No details were provided on a start of production or release date for the sequel to Whedon's "The Avengers," the year's biggest hit with nearly $1.5 billion at the worldwide box office. But the film will have to get in line behind a busy schedule of solo sequels featuring "Avengers" co-stars.

Robert Downey Jr. is filming "Iron Man 3" for release next May, while "Thor" star Chris Hemsworth will have his own sequel out in November 2013. Chris Evans' "Captain America" sequel will follow in April 2014.

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