Iron Man 3 Interview: Robert Downey Jr. & Marvel Deliver Details

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Iron Man 3 stars Robert Downey Jr. and Don Cheadle, director Shane Black and Marvel head Kevin Feige gathered at Comic-Con and gave us a special inside scoop as to the film’s details. All this before the gang headed to Hall H to reveal details about Marvel’s future beyond Iron Man 3 to the world.

Robert Downey Jr. Comic-Con

Feige immediately stressed there would be a difference between the feel of The Avengers and Iron Man 3. “We’re not aiming for bigger necessarily," he said. "We’re aiming for different, fresh and new."

Although it will be a varied experience for audiences, the film’s director seeks to still channel certain emotional elements, as The Avengers wallpaper captured so well.

“To me it’s an idea about doubling the intensity that Avengers managed to capture -- the lightning-in-a-bottle feel of really stuffing so much into a limited space. We’re trying to get as much into this as we can. We’re looking to get a ton of thrills in a short space and make a nice little stew for you,” Black promised. “Fresh and different, but there is still the idea about being big.”

For Downey Jr., he sought to further delve into what it means to be Tony Stark.

Avengers, I think, even surprised us to a certain extent. Looking back you can dissect why it was the right movie with the right people. We feel the same way about this now. I feel that the Rhodey/Tony relationship had not been developed as much as they might be. In the comics it was always to me the heart of what was great about them,” Downey said.

“Also, we tried to be practical in a post-Avengers world: What are his challenges now? What are some of the limitations that might be placed on him? What sort of threat would have him, as usual, ignore those limitations?”

Iron Man 3 also allowed the actor to reunite with his Kiss Kiss Bang Bang director.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is one of my favorite experiences. The script was practically perfect but we improvised anyway,” Downey Jr. admitted.

“You improvised anyway,” added Black as everyone laughed.

Perhaps trying to deflect the joke, Downey Jr. began to heap praise on Black.

“The main thing is Shane’s storytelling and the emotional depth that happens without taking things too seriously,” Downey Jr. said. "That is kind of what Jon (Favreau) had set up. There were times on Iron Man 2 when Favreau, Don (Cheadle) and I would call Shane the night before we had a big scene the next day. He asked as payment once that we pick him up a piece of salmon and some blueberries. So he became known as code name: Blueberries. And he’s working for about the same fee now.”

Iron Man 2 may have drifted into a darker era of Tony Stark’s life, and the cast and filmmakers aren’t giving any details away in terms of specifics. But, Downey Jr. did say this in terms of why he thought Black was perfect to helm the third Iron Man film.

“I think if you look at the history of the films that Shane has written and directed, there is a real desire for me as someone who loves movies that it harkens back to some of those themes that occur in mainstream films,” he said.

When the question turned to Cheadle, he seemed to know its subject… War Machine and what audiences can expect in Iron Man 3.

“There are some different variations that War Machine goes through in this film. I don’t want to give them away, but it's fun to see them morph and shift,” Cheadle said. “And the Iron Man suit is really spectacular in this one, I think, the innovations to it.”
Iron Man 3 Comic-Con Press Conference

That question had to be followed up with: How will the Iron Patriot fit into Black’s world?

“Keep a straight face, Don,” Downey said.

“I will,” Cheadle responded.

The last thing Feige wants to leave us with is the fact that he believes that The Avengers was a close of a chapter for Marvel. “Iron Man 3 is the beginning of the next phase,” he said. “Certainly Tony’s journey will spring forward but it’s the most self-contained story we’ve done since Iron Man 1.”

The company seems to be on a “do no wrong” path, but the studio head is keenly aware of how to keep their success streak going. “The trick is to try and make great movies that are all different and fresh,” Feige said.

“I think what you’ll see with Iron Man 3 is some very unique plot points and direction, which is the same thing with Thor 2 and Cap 2.”

“What Kevin is trying to tell you is that we were able to take some risks, which is very admirable in a superhero movie and why I wanted to do it,” Black added.

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