The title alone is tantalizing enough – Item 47. Just what is Item 47? And just how would the latest Marvel short (dubbed “One-Shots”) tie into the increasingly large and complex cinematic world that Marvel has crafted? We’ve known for weeks that the next One-Shot would appear as a bonus on the upcoming The Avengers home-video release (and, well, duh, of course there’s a new One-Shot, as is becoming par for the course after both Thor and Captain America got one), but the events of that film looked to have (spoiler alert?) taken the star of the previous One-Shots out of commission.

Now, thanks to EW (who also debuted that first still up above), we’ve got a bevy of new information about Item 47, including plot, stars, and just what that title means. Even better? The skew of Item 47 signals Marvel’s interest in exploring the “real world” that’s currently home to all manner of superheros, and that’s the sort of interest that can expand the universe exponentially.

The outlet reports that Item 47 stars Lizzy Caplan (awesome) and Jesse Bradford (also awesome) as “a down-on-their-luck couple who find one of the discarded alien guns from the finale to The Avengers — and proceed to make some incredibly bad decisions.Really, what would you do if your city was attacked and a giant Chitauri gun fell into your hands?

The title of the film “refers to the gun itself, which S.H.I.E.L.D. would like very much to retrieve from the hapless young troublemakers.” Marvel Studios co-president Louis D’Esposito, who also directed the film, explains further, “The world is topsy-turvy now. There’s been an alien invasion, and things are crazy…So when this gun ­literally fell into their lap, this is a sign: We’re going to rob a few banks, we’re going to buy a boat, we’re going to the Caribbean, and all our problems will be solved.”

This all sounds like a great idea – save for the fact that two S.H.I.E.L.D. agents are in hot pursuit of “Benny” and “Claire” (yes). Those agents are familiar ones to both Marvel fans and genre geeks alike – they will be played by Maximiliano Hernández, from Thor and The Avengers, and Lost’s Man in Black Titus Welliver, making his Marvel debut.

The short is the “longest, most elaborate of the Marvel shorts so far” (Item 47 clocks in at 12 minutes, compared to the previous One-Shots, which were both under 4 minutes), and EW echoes our speculation that it could serve as a entry point into exploring the Marvel universe, be it with “regular” people or by way of introducing us to other superheroes. Scripts are currently being cooked up to accompany Iron Man 3, Thor 2, and Captain America 2. When it comes to using the shorts to bring in other superheroes (EW mentions Black Panther, Iron Fist, and Wasp), D’Esposito says, “there’s always a potential to introduce a character. We have 8,000 of them, and they can’t all be at the same level. So maybe there are some that are not so popular, and we introduce them [with a short] – and they take off. I could see that happening.”

Item 47 will be available on The Avengers Blu-ray, which hits shelves on September 25. There will also be a special screening of the short at Comic-Con next week.

Till then, let’s relive Marvel’s best One-Shot (so far) and spend some time with our beloved Agent Coulson below, as he stars in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor’s Hammer.


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