Those who were hoping that Jennifer Connelly -- pretty much the one good thing about Ang Lee's 2003 film Hulk -- would somehow make the nimble transition into playing Betty Ross again in the complete re-do version now being prepped can stop their fantasizing. 29-year old Liv Tyler has been cast as Ross, the long-time love interest to Ed Norton's Dr. Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk, which will begin shooting in Toronto this summer. As noted in The Hollywood Reporter, the Ross character has been a fixture of the Hulk comic since 1962; she is a fellow scientist who works with Banner to help him tame the beast within, not always successfully. The HR story also has plot details to reveal: the film will open with Banner and Ross estranged from each other, "but with the pursuit of the Hulk heating up and Banner on the run trying to cure his condition, Ross finds herself swept back into his life."
This casting move, coupled with her leading role in the upcoming horror film The Strangers -- a new still from that film was released today, by the way -- suggests Tyler's stock as a leading lady is very much on the rise, which is a trend I support. As for director Louis Letterier, I'm one of those poor, unfortunate souls who still hasn't seen either The Transporter or its sequel Transporter 2, so I'm in no position to comment on whether he deserved to be handed the keys to a high-interest franchise like this, but here's hoping this team that's being assembled makes something interesting out of it. Norton and Tyler are both intriguing actors, and I can imagine that at the very least they'll find some nice angles for their characters, whether the movie as a whole works or not.