There’s been a lot of movement on the Marvel movie front lately; quite literally in the case of some release date changes. Now a spy (apparently from deep inside the ranks of Marvel Studios, if he’s to be believed) tells Aint It Cool News why The Avengers has been moved back a year: they want Jon Favreau to direct it.

Avengers is delayed a year because of financing issues but also because the plan is for Favreau to helm it. Everybody here loves the guy and he wants to do it, but it would have been impossible for him to do before the date change given his Iron Man 2 commitments. Also partly the reason why he agreed to do the Stark sequel on such an accelerated schedule was so he could get given first dibs on this. It would still be a punishing schedule for him, so hes not firmly confirmed yet, but he is certainly the presumptive director at this point.

Other news: rumored Thor casting may be quite true; according to the spy Alexander Skarsgard is Kenneth Branagh’s choice to play Thor, and daddy Stellan would have a cameo as daddy Odin. Also, the spy says that Branagh approached Josh Hartnett because of his work as Iago in O (which is the sort of detail that kind of makes me believe this spy). And if you’re interested in how Marvel feels about Fox and Tom Rothman… well, click here to read the rest of AICN’s piece.