When you think about the lack of reality in The Avengers you probably think about Norse gods, a guy in a flying armored suit, a frozen super soldier and a giant green rage monster. When the US Military thinks about the lack of reality in The Avengers they think about SHIELD.
The military loves working with big budget blockbusters. They contribute weapons and people to train actors and vehicles and all kinds of support. And they don’t just contribute to realistic movies like The Hurt Locker, no no. They love contributing to movies with a lack of reality like Transformers, Battleship and Battle: Los Angeles.
That is, unless SHIELD is involved. That’s why they pulled out of working on The Avengers. The National Guard does make an appearance, and Marvel had to insert CG F-22 Raptors onto the heli-carrier because the military wouldn’t give them any.
What’s the military’s reasoning? Wired has a quote from Phil Strub, the Defense Department’s Hollywood liason:
We couldn’t reconcile the unreality of this international organization and our place in it. To whom did S.H.I.E.L.D. answer? Did we work for S.H.I.E.L.D.? We hit that roadblock and decided we couldn’t do anything.
Although it comes across like the military doesn’t understand SHIELD I think it’s more likely that they didn’t know their place in the film. Does the US Military contribute weaponry to SHIELD? Or would they be a separate entity like the National Guard was in the film and just lending their vehicles to the organization because the movie needed it?
Think about the other films the US Military has done, there’s a clear military presence: Transformers, Battle: LA and Battleship all let you know upfront that this is the military at work. In The Avengers it’s a made-up international peace-keeping organization.[Wired via /Film]