UPDATED: It's looking pretty real now, according to Variety.

Is it true? Will Buffy The Vampire Slayer and beloved voice-of-a-nerdish-generation writer/director Joss Whedon be directing the big-screen adventures of Marvel's The Avengers? Well, Mike Fleming at Deadline.com says so. So… Really? Maybe. Whedon's been rumored to be in talks to direct the film for a while and Nikke Finke's site has a track record of being right a lot of the time. If nothing else, the way the news has spread from site to site stands as a testament for a lot of folks wanting the story to be true. Will the "final negotiations" Fleming writes of being "told" about turn into the real deal? Maybe if enough people wish it so, it will become real.

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