Watch an Alternate Opening to ‘The Avengers’

It turns out that Joss Whedon’s original opening for The Avengers was a lot darker than what audiences ended up seeing in theaters. In the flash-forward scene — which we spotted thanks to io9 — the epic “Tesseract event” that serves as the film’s finale has already wreaked havoc on the streets of Manhattan, and Agent Maria Hill is in the middle of a debriefing, airing her grievances against S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury. Click through to watch the clip now, and let us know in the comments if you prefer the drastic shift in tone, or if you think that Whedon made the right choice for the film by going with a lighter open.