Quint goes one on one with Jon Favreau about IRON MAN at Comic-Con!!!
Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with my 1:1 interview with Jon Favreau from the San Diego Comic-Con. This happened just after the big panel where he showed some footage from the movie. Click here if you haven’t read that report!. We start off talking Indiana Jones, which immediately followed his presentation. Then get pretty well in to what he has planned for the film, specifically how the Mandarin fits in. Plus he drops a bomb about plans for a collaboration with well loved IRON MAN comic artist… well, you’ll see. Also watch out for a couple incredible sound-o-text spots to download an MP3 where you can hear my yammering troll voice and Favreau’s masculine, confident human voice.
Quint: Did you see the INDIANA JONES thing?
Jon Favreau: I heard what happened, but I left before they revealed her.
Quint: Karen Allen looks exactly the same.
Jon Favreau: Yeah, I remember her from ANIMAL HOUSE, right? I had a crush on her then.
Quint: Well then she still looked good in SCROOGED too, which was a little more recent… Well, she found the fountain of youth and was able to figure that out, but dude, you still stole the panel. The INDY 4 thing was cool, but I still think there wasn’t any better… in terms of showmanship and response…
Jon Favreau: Yeah, I think we worked the room really well. The thing is, get on get off… Show them something. Hit them in the face, and then just get out of there. So many times when I’ve been involved in these things it always feels like… because the rooms are so big… You go up there and you try to say too much... it could be like an eternity. There are almost 7,000 people in that room and I mean you have no idea what it’s like on stage there. It’s a very overwhelming room and I remember I was there for ZATHURA and nobody cared and just that feeling being on stage and everybody’s waiting for the next thing and then last year we were in a smaller room for the MARVEL panel and that was kind of fun, but having come to two of these, now my third, you sort of know what the room wants, what it expects. I had been reading online what people were looking for, what they are curious about and so we went to great pains to do something really cool today, but that didn’t take away from what we are doing on Saturday.
Quint: Yeah, so there’s more on Saturday?
Jon Favreau: There’s not more footage, but there’s more…
Quint: Well, you’re going to have more people…
Jon Favreau: There’s a Q and A. There’s more information, you know, that’s our… we have to fill a big slot.
Quint: Here you just wanted to get the juices flowing…
Jon Favreau: We wanted to rock the room. We wanted to get a good buzz going and also there’s been so much curiosity and we haven’t shown any teasers or anything, because it’s a comic book movie and because it’s the first MARVEL movie we really wanted to sort of reward the COMIC-CON fans with the first look at anything and by the way that was a thing that’s never going to be shown anywhere else. That was just cut for COMIC-CON. That’s for people who want to know “Is Robert Downey [Jr.] Tony Stark?” “Did we handle it…?” “Are we staying true to the books?” You know? “Are we going to be a kiddy movie or are we going to go for it?” We wanted to show the fans that they aren’t being forgotten with the first MARVEL STUDIOS production.
Quint: And with as much practical effects as you did, it made it possible, I’d imagine, to be able to do that.
Jon Favreau: Yeah, we did a mad scramble to get a couple shots going with ILM and they’ve been very cooperative, but if we were relying completely on the CG we wouldn’t have had anything; it would have been a little PowerPoint show and tell. Here we could actually begin to tell a story, because all that stuff… that’s all in camera…
Quint: Well the Mark-1… that’s what people were flipping over too and just watching him… that shot of the dude trying to get the headshot and it ricocheting back off…
Jon Favreau: Yeah. There’s humor in it, but it still takes the source material very very seriously and then Robert’s going to be coming down on Saturday and it’ll be great to get that dialogue going and he so loves the fans and loves the property and so by getting some cast down here it’ll even up the ante a little bit on what we are able to deliver.
Quint: Well we need to hit some points here. I’ve heard rumors that Mandarin doesn’t really play that big of a part in this first one.
Jon Favreau: Yeah and this is what we sort of did, we looked at the source material and we found the guy that is… because villains has always been, I think, the soft spot in the IRON MAN mythology.
Quint: He doesn’t have his rogue’s gallery, like SPIDER-MAN.
Jon Favreau: Yeah, you don’t have… and in action movies, it’s always the villains that define the movie. Usually it’s the villain that steals the show.
Jon Favreau: And certainly in the SPIDERMAN films the villains were as exciting as the hero and they have the freedom to do anything and so they are always more dynamic. As an actor, you always want to play the bad guy and with IRON MAN we just laid out and the one guy who was the main dude that has to be his nemesis, if he has one, was The Mandarin, but the Mandarin was always an interesting character, because he wasn’t the guy who was going to square off toe-to-toe with him and trade punches. You also have a weird thing where he has magic/technology that he uses with his rings and it was very difficult to find an approach to stay true to the books, but also do something satisfying and something that didn’t seem completely ridiculous, because a lot of that stuff doesn’t hold up well if you just lift it right out of the books.
Quint: Yeah, you’re trying to place it in the real world…
Jon Favreau: Exactly, so how do you place The Mandarin in a real world without making him some weird cartoonish caricature and how do you… so what was the essence of The Mandarin and the essence of The Mandarin was always that he was the mastermind. He was always sort of the Sauron of it and as we approached the material, we also didn’t want to have it be just the thing where we make a movie and if it does well, we scramble and figure out what the next one is. We said, “well OK, what’s the whole… how do we track this story over the course of a few movies, if we get so lucky…” with the hopes that if it stands alone, it does stand alone and you have great stuff, but then as you sort of peel it back further, it’s like THE HOBBIT and LORD OF THE RINGS. You look at THE HOBBIT, it’s a great, great book and my favorite of all of the LORD OF THE RINGS series, but you want to learn more as you get deeper into it and so one sort of plays as a fable and an origin story and then you want to play everything out, so it’s there, but you ain’t going to see The Mandarin shooting lightning bolts out of a magic ring at Iron Man in this movie, so… The fans will recognize it and the people who don’t know about it… it’s not going to be a prominent thing for them…
Quint: Kind of Zod them in a little bit…
Jon Favreau: But, it will be… he still is sort of… I would call him the nemesis.
Quint: Are you still down for it, if this one does as well as everybody thinks it will, to come back and just get the next couple going?
Jon Favreau: I’ve got to tell you I’ve never had an experience this good, because MARVEL is… they are the people who control the purse strings on this thing, it’s their money. They are fans. They know the value of the source material. It’s not like they have to lobby with a Hollywood studio for what’s in the books and having people from different departments of the movie studio saying it’s irrelevant. They want to make the best possible movie they can and they want to give the fans a fair shake and show the fans what to expect with the studio and you can see it in the casting and you can see it with… as you begin to see little bits and pieces of the movie from either images that are released or things that you see from spy footage… you begin to get a sense of the way they’re making these movies and this is a make or break year for them and I think between our movie and THE HULK, they want to show the fans that this is… that there will be a continuation of quality and that there’s going to be a lot of excitement and from the perspective of a director, there’s Kevin Feige basically… there’s Avi [Arad] who is a producer now and Jeremy Latcham, who is a creative exec on this thing and that’s the whole team. They are there on the set and we go through the process with the actors of what story are we telling and whatever the best idea wins and it never feels like there’s a studio head who’s got a half a dozen films that they’re trying to divide their attention between who are handing out mandates. This is a creative process and they have been involved on a lot of really really good movies working for other people. There’s a tremendous amount of freedom as a filmmaker. It really feels like I’m making a very big independent movie and the actors are great. They have been nothing but pros and… wonderful performances really make your job easy as a director and then MARVEL knows how to work the effects right and now as that’s coming together working with our primary vendor is ILM. They’re coming off of a very hot year between PIRATES and TRANSFORMERS… sort of have that resource I think has been a really… They started off as a leader in the industry, then a lot of other big houses came up and gave them a run for their money and I think that they’re really breaking that now and emerging as head and shoulders above the rest. The creative team that they have on this… we have Hal, who did animation for PIRATES and we have Ben Snow, who was working the visual effects for KING KONG at Weta… you know, the best people in the industry and I have John Nelson who did GLADIATOR and a number of Ridley Scott movies supervising the visual effects for us and I just have a dream team, so watching those effects fall into the film and having great actors makes my job so fun.
Quint: So you’re going for that photo-real look… not so stylized, but obviously fitting the suit, because you have a good working practical suit…
Jon Favreau: That’s right, so we have Matty Libatique, who I’ve always loved his work and have always wanted to collaborate with him since I saw his work in TIGERLAND and REQUIEM (FOR A DREAM) and he was real excited and he is a real artist. The trick is you want to make it gritty. You want to make it real and grounded, but you also want to make it a big escapist adventure for people who just want to see a popcorn movie, too, so you can’t get bogged down in the style of it and make it feel too indie, but you also don’t want to make it just all gloss and you don’t want to make it a big glossy kid’s movie either. I think we have found a really nice… we have been able to straddle those two concerns.
Quint: I love the focus on character in what you brought, because I can see the temptation easily to have just brought the cave sequence with you.
Jon Favreau: And I had even cut together an even longer piece and MARVEL was like, especially Avi, was like “if you show too much too soon… you’ve got a whole year to go… you got to do enough just to show them and get them excited and reward them, but you don’t want to blow it all, because you’ve got an hour and a half movie coming out… or a two hour movie… whatever it works out to be in a year. You don’t want to peak too early. You want to keep it exciting…”
Quint: I noticed the little production art above the computer.
Jon Favreau: Yeah.
Quint: That looked like the Iron Monger to me…
Jon Favreau: I like to lay a few breadcrumbs for people out there for people and you know, there’s enough stuff that was found out by the fans that you want to keep… I want to be the type of filmmaker that whenever something comes out it’s not just a boiler plate marketing press release. I want to create a dialogue, which I feel like I have with the fans. I pay attention to what they say and they pay attention to what I say and we both share a love and respect for the material, so I just want to be a filmmaker that acts the way fans do. I want to be a filmmaker that as a fan, I want filmmakers to act.
Jon Favreau: And so I get to sort of see it from both sides, you know? After I get offstage doing my presentation, I want to see what Indy’s doing. You know what I mean? I’m excited to be there, I’ve got the best seat in the house.
Quint: Yeah and it must have been surreal, because you went off to the side to get a quick photo taken as the INDIANA JONES music starts playing and you’re like…
Jon Favreau: I know, I know, I’m in a whirlwind. I tell you, it’s a different world now, because I’ve never been involved with a movie that has had this sort of excitement beforehand. ELF was something that sort of snuck in under the radar and then when it opened it did business. It became a hit, but it wasn’t a hit before it came out.
Jon Favreau: And ZATHURA never quite got a leg up… never fought it’s way through the market place. When I did panel here, it was to a half-filled house that was waiting for the next panel after me. So whereas a lot of people get frustrated by how many leaks happen or how much speculation there is, I welcome it. I think it’s all part of the dance and I’m excited by it.
Quint: Well, you also kind of set the tone though, because by using so many practicals that look fantastic there, you don’t have to go “but they don’t understand, because half of it’s not there… or this is only the placeholder for the CG or something…”
Jon Favreau: Right. Yeah, no… If you look at TRANSFORMERS, it really didn’t build up a buzz until that ILM animation started coming out in the trailers leading up in the few weeks before the movie came out. I don’t even think they did much in COMIC-CON the year before, because so much of it was done on the computers and then when it peaked and it hit, it was a movie that you just had to go out and see and it was a fun ride. It really was… I think it delivered on what people want when they see a movie like that. With us, though, we have a different case to try. There was nobody who was like “are they going to stay true to the cartoon” in TRANSFORMERS… “Are they going to stay true to the toys?” With IRON MAN, its like “How is not just Jon, not just the cast, but how is MARVEL going to handle things now that they have nobody to point the finger at?” “It’s their responsibility and how are they going to treat us as people who have… some of us spending forty years reading this stuff?”
Quint: You have also already gotten us primed. There’s a reason why that house was packed. TREK had a lot to do with it, of course, and INDY, but I think the reason people will be walking away talking about IRON MAN is because you’ve have that build since the last CON with that first image. The first art came out and everything that has come out, from the snuck footage to every interview, people know that you’re going for a certain respectability and going for a certain look for the thing and so I think that they were already primed, so if you had brought that and everybody was cold they would have been big, but I think the reason why people exploded when the repulsors on the hand sent them into mach overdrive or whatever… They blew up bigger than anything because they were so ready to be knocked out by some footage.
Jon Favreau: I think so and this is also… as big as IRON MAN is in the comic book community, there’s still a lot of educating that needs to be done to the general population, because most people when you say IRON MAN, they think of the Black Sabbath song, they don’t think of this guy and that’s why COMIC-CON is such an important place to sort of make our case. As we sort of joke with the MARVEL guys, “we’re playing to our base,” and we cut a trailer that was very different than how we would cut it for general population to educate them on who Iron Man is. This wasn’t “who is Iron Man?” This one is “how are we handling Iron Man” and “what version are we doing of Iron Man?” as there are 40 years of books and there was this certain…
Jon Favreau: Even Stan Lee says there was a certain precariousness to who Tony Stark was as a character. I mean here you were right there at the time of Vietnam with a weapons designer, he admits that’s about as tough of a challenge as you could give yourself and I don’t know if politically the world is very different… we find ourselves as a country at war and a weapons manufacturer is a guy that you have to really do some deft storytelling and make some interesting choices to make it exciting and somebody that you root for and understand and see the movie threw their eyes. I think Robert Downey playing him the way he does and the way we handle the story is going to make it work, but IRON MAN is a tricky, and always has been, a tricky hero even in the Civil War books that are out. He’s lost a lot of fans, because he’s always been a guy who has sort of marched to a different drummer and how do you stay true to that while still making a movie that’s relatable and make a character that you’ll want to root for?
Quint: Well, I don’t think I have too much more.
Jon Favreau: Cool, well always, you’ve been there on the little movies and it’s nice to have you here on one that looks like everything’s sort of working out well and it’s growing and… You’ve been good to me… There’s also a little thing on Amazon, where I did a little five minute DINNER FOR TWO thing with Robert Downey…
Quint: I posted that.
Jon Favreau: Oh you did? Oh that’s right, I did see that you did that. That was great that you mentioned that, because…
Quint: I’m a big fan of DINNER FOR FIVE, but still a lot of people don’t know about it. I hope some people came to it because of that article.
Jon Favreau: That’s great, because it’s one of those things that, you know, we’re really proud of it, there’s forty-nine episodes. It wasn’t available to everybody, because it was only available on IFC and not everybody gets IFC. So it’s great now on Amazon to be able to have it available to people to check out.
Quint: Do you think you would go back to that to do some sort of special?
Jon Favreau: We’ve been talking about it. We’ve been talking about doing something with the cast. It’s a hard thing logistically to do, because you need a lot of time to edit it. It’s not just something you do in the press junket, but we’re trying to figure out a way to do it. I would love to do a DINNER WITH FIVE, with Gwyneth [Paltrow], Robert, Jeff Bridges and Terrence [Howard]. That would be a dream DINNER FOR FIVE and Peter Billingsly is an exec. producer on this movie and he’s the guy who ran that whole show with me, so we could pull it together and we’ve been talking to Paramount about it, so we would love to do some sort of special leading into the release of the film.
Quint: That’d be cool. There was a lot of response off of just that “conversation for two,” no dinner involved with no cigars.
Jon Favreau: For sure and then I’m about to do a panel after this too… it’s in 45 minutes and I just don’t want the people in the panel to know this, but you could put it up like while I’m in the panel… I don’t think you’ll write this fast anyways…
Quint: No no…
Jon Favreau: Me and Adi Granov got to know each other during… he actually contacted me through the myspace page and he says “you know all the stuff on your myspace page is my stuff” and I was like “oh my God, we’re using your designs as a springboard into what we want to do and we brought him in to work with Phil Saunders and then later with the team from Stan Winston, who designed the actual practical suit and we flew him out and we did a signing last year at COMIC-CON… Adi and I got to know each other and we started talking and he and I are going to do a four issue run, where I’m going to write it and he’s going to do all of the artwork. I’ve already written two of them and that’ll be out leading up to the movie.
Quint: Are these directly involved with the movie or are they like after or before?
Jon Favreau: It’s the same suit design. I wanted to have the freedom, because part of the difficulty in the movie is that you have to do something that plays to a general audience, not just to the comic book audience, so it limits you. So in a comic book, you get to do whatever you want, so I sort of draw on the old book mythology a lot more and I made the bad guy Fing Fang Foom, because that was sort of like everybody… all the fans were like “oh man, the bad guy should be Fing Fang Foom,” and there’s no way in the first movie you could do that, but in a comic book with Adi drawing of course you want it to be a giant fucking dragon, you know what I mean?
Quint: Yeah, yeah.
Jon Favreau: And what’s cool too is that Fing Fang Foom is like… such a weird villain, and it turns out that he’s been around since before Iron Man actually. He predates Iron Man by a couple of years, because he was part of the old Stan Lee horror and mystery series of books that it was even… I think it was even before it was called Marvel. When did it turn to Marvel? Was it…
Quint: Sixty…four…? (I was wrong, it was 1961)
Jon Favreau: This was before Fantastic Four I think, so it was a lot… me and Adi had a lot of fun, because he was like “it’s so easy to write comics compared to movies,” you know, you just write out panel ideas and they can do anything you want and so he and I would just laugh on the phone and I’d email him ideas and he’d go back to me and send back sketches, so it was just a really fun way to collaborate. It’s of course, a lot more work for him, than for me, but he’s going to be coming out here and we’re going to do an announcement…
Quint: That’s awesome.
Jon Favreau: Which is fun too, because here… you know COMIC-CON started off to be about comics and now its… the movies are stealing a lot of the thunder, it’s good to go back and give a little to the comic book fans too, so there you go… there’s another little scoop. Alright man, you’ve always been great and I appreciate it.
And there it is. Favreau’s a good guy and I’m glad that he’s really knocking it out of the park. I’m so psyched to see this thing. I’m working with Paramount to arrange some sort of edit bay visit… and I might have some exclusive Iron Man goodies for you by Monday morning. Keep looking back for those. Okay, time for sleep! -Quint email@example.com
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July 28, 2007, 2:18 a.m. CST
July 28, 2007, 2:35 a.m. CST
by George Newman
...But now it is the brightest beacon of hope for the future. <p> Don't let us down Fav
July 28, 2007, 2:36 a.m. CST
Any video from the panel make it out yet?
July 28, 2007, 2:43 a.m. CST
I love the attitude of "I want it to be like Adi Gravnov's suit" and that's it. Awesome. Just bring it to life.
July 28, 2007, 3:16 a.m. CST
by THE KNIGHT
That would definitely be an interesting read. I'd love to know how post production is going.... LET QUINT VIST THE EDITING ROOM PARAMOUNT! <p> Good job quint!
July 28, 2007, 3:22 a.m. CST
by Colier Rannd
From the moment he opened the MySpace page I have had great respect for Jon. He's not just paying lip service but actually getting involved with fans. And he's lost a lot of weight since last time I saw him. He looks good! Hope this all goes great for him.
July 28, 2007, 4:21 a.m. CST
Crimson Dynamo? Whirlwind? Spymaster? The BLIZZARD? Do these names mean NOTHING to you?
July 28, 2007, 5:20 a.m. CST
...Arrived late to the Con, 1st thing I heard from an Exhibitor/Friend: "Did you SEE the Iron Man footage!?" ('cause he knows I'm usually there all/every day) ...and I LOVED what Jon did with Zathura (and his Con presentation there of), and his opinion of the Con changing under Hollywood's gaze in the last 4 years especially!!
July 28, 2007, 5:51 a.m. CST
Main villians: Spider-Man/Green Goblin, Doc Oc, FF/Dr. Doom. Capt America/Red Skull, X-men/ Magneto, Thor/Loki,....Iron Man/err....
July 28, 2007, 6:04 a.m. CST
He nearly get a lifetime pass just for "Swingers", but this interview makes me respect him even more.
July 28, 2007, 7:35 a.m. CST
by mr. brownstone
That movie makes me shit myself with laughter. It's got such a great, uncomfortable vibe. There should be a scene where Tony Stark awkwardly bitch slaps a bell boy.
July 28, 2007, 8:10 a.m. CST
Ultimo, Madame Masque, Crimson Dynamo, Titanium Man, Obadiah Stane, Justin Hammer, Mandarin, the Melter, the Living Laser, err...Mister Doll... and, as his alcoholism and current god complex prove, Tony Stark is also his own worst enemy. None of those baddies may be a-list material in terms of villainy but IM has got a better and more varied rogues gallery than Captain America or Superman. No, think about it! Who has Supes got other than Lex Luthor and Brainiac? And who is there for Cap apart from the Red Skull? Zemo, who is just the Red Skull in a bad costume? Batroc ze Lepair?
July 28, 2007, 8:47 a.m. CST
Planning his vengence. Which he will soon unfold.
July 28, 2007, 8:59 a.m. CST
Awesome interview!! thank you. I love how he talks about the tone of Iron Man.. striking the right balance. And he does listen to his fans and the fans of the real Iron Man books. I wish him nothing but the best. I hope the movie is a huge success!!! I am thinking it will be.
July 28, 2007, 9:18 a.m. CST
It gets old hearing about Supes and his supposed 'thin rogues gallery' so here goes...BESIDES Lex and Brainiac...Darkseid, Metallo, Parasite, Toyman, Doomsday, Bizarro, Zod & Phantom Zone baddies...these are pretty good villains...plus I would also include Lobo and Mr. Mxyzptlk. Even Eclipso (under-rated!) got started in Action Comics. Gotta remember to cut and paste that list for the next Superman tb ;^)
July 28, 2007, 9:21 a.m. CST
This guy is a freak of nature, he was born without the the "bullshit" gene. From all that I hear he is a class act straight down the line. <p> This sounds like a cool enough movie, although for me Downey's performance is going to be the key, but it's worth saying again how nice it is to hear from someone at Favreau's level who's so unpretentious and grounded.<p> Not to go too deep, but I will never forget a magazine piece Favreau wrote a decade or so ago in praise of MONOGAMY... about how cool it is to just be close to and fuck one woman, and not to sleep around... & not for some preachy Christian reasons but just because that's where the best love (& lovin') are at, for those men lucky enough to know it... well, I'm a hard-line monogamous guy too, always have been, and that essay really stuck with me. A class act.
July 28, 2007, 9:29 a.m. CST
BRING KEVLAR-MAN NOW!!!
July 28, 2007, 9:32 a.m. CST
Good to see Jon got his eating under control. Far cry from what he looked like here: http://armchairathlete.blogspot.com/2005/11/what-happened-money.html
July 28, 2007, 9:34 a.m. CST
I'm actually excited about superhero movies again. Favreau sounds like a stand up guy, my favorite part was "of course you want a giant fucking dragon!" Hells, yeah! I"m pumped for this.
July 28, 2007, 10:04 a.m. CST
All I wanna see is the damn footage. It's all that matters, the interview didn't bring anything new and as someone said earlier it was too much of a starstruck chat to be taken seriously. <p> I understand how Fav's respectable motto can ring any bell with the fans, but he's just selling his stuff. The site seems to have close ties (and I don't say that in a sarcastic fashion) with the prod: why don't you try to ask more serious stuff about the adaptation, the way they handle the characters - not only Stark, try to dig a lil' deeper with the supporting cast, damn it! I know something is wrong with an interview when it sounds like a promotional BS from a DVD bonus disc. Try bold, well-informed questions for a change! You said you were a fan of DINNER FOR FIVE and frankly, it feels like. <p> And the "weak rogue gallery" stuff is just ignorant: Madame Masque is a tragic villain a la Catwoman, Mandarin kicks ass and even a B-grade screenwriter above the AkivaG-level could turn it into a "respectable" foe, SpyMaster is a badass henchman, Crimson Dynamo and Titanium Man have the potential to be visually stunning, the Controller is a wicked guy, Force is Stark's evil mirror image,... and I don't even mention bad guys from other series like Dr Doom or Ultron (frankly, after the catastrophic Doom of the FF movies I wouldn't bother if they recreated him in another franchise, it makes sense comic-wise as long as it doesn't repeats the bad guy's origin). <p> Well, sorry for the rant Quint but the chat was disapointing. I don't blame you for not knowing Iron Man's mythology, but some of Fav's answers needed to be challenged. No need to go David Frost on his ass but boldness and respectful manners aren't mutually exclusive.
July 28, 2007, 10:13 a.m. CST
THAT would be a visually and thematically exciting bad guy. Same with AIM, these guys mean business. <p> Ok, I'll stop it here. Again, sorry for the rant Quint, but I'm not the kind of guy bitching when it's inappropriate. This interview was boring and except for the Granov/Favreau run there was nothing new. I'm pretty sure your comments about Downey's work would've been more relevant with the footage (even in mediocre quality) included. You should've waited til' tomorrow and the probable leak of the teaser to run this interview, so we could've compared your thoughts with the real thing. In other words: TOO SOON!!! ^^
July 28, 2007, 11:23 a.m. CST
I followed his book for 5 years, and not a single villain jumps out at me as someone I HAVE to see on the big screen. No, listing Iron Man villains does not win that argument. All it does is put one display how lackluster his top-tier adversaries are. Crimson Dynamo would be cool, but it'll be tough to update for post-Cold War without the fanboys going ballistic.
July 28, 2007, 11:30 a.m. CST
I'll bet he did it too. Good job, Favs.
July 28, 2007, 11:32 a.m. CST
by YO MOM'S GOAT
July 28, 2007, 11:38 a.m. CST
Can you imagine the ridicule of an IM movie with the main villain being named Crimson Dynamo?
July 28, 2007, 11:41 a.m. CST
I think it's very akin to The Flash's: lots of interesting, imaginative, & colorful characters, even if they never really made the A-list. But with the right writer & proper attention, a bunch of them could really take off. I think it would be really fun to see Blacklash or Modok or the Controller on the screen.
July 28, 2007, noon CST
You have fanboys crying their eyes out because the Joker paints his face instead of having it scarred by acid. If you don't think these same "fans" will raise a shitstorm over a Crimson Dynamo who works for Al Qaeda instead of the Soviet Union, you're just naive.
July 28, 2007, 12:03 p.m. CST
or Doctor Octopus... We all know how lame these were onscreen, and how their sheer silliness kept the audience away...
July 28, 2007, 12:08 p.m. CST
you may not be aware of it, but there are a lot of bad guys in Russia (and its surroundings). Updating doesn't mean raping: between angry military, separatists and former communists I'm pretty sure they don't run out of nutjobs. I've heard that the Abomination is the villain in Incredible Hulk, and I'm pretty sure they'll keep his eastern europe origin, too. As for the name, you can show a villain in a movie without mentioning his name if too silly (see Venom or - again - the Abomination).
July 28, 2007, 12:33 p.m. CST
Ya know, i'm of two minds on this one. On the one hand I think you have to be relevant to create a truly compelling story for mainstream audiences, and in that sense you absolutely have to go with a Jihadist terrorist organization, in order to capture the most prevalent fears of today's world. But on the other hand, there is a certain amount of escapism that people want out of these films, and to not have the horrors of the daily news invade their entertainment, which steers you toward the Eastern European route (not that I mean in any way to diminish their own horrors). So it really comes down to how they want to play it for the average movie-goer, which gives them a few different options, and obviously some would cause more controversy with fandom than others, but as has been stated many times, we are hardly the largest demographic for these films.
July 28, 2007, 12:45 p.m. CST
No "g" in the first part of his name. <p> And Iron Man's enemies are sort of lame, but I'd still love to see some of them on the screen. AIM is a good idea (and yes, a live-action MODOK would be a hoot). I'd like to see the Beetle brought into it somewhere (I know, he shared this villain with Spider-Man, but still... Armored enemy and all). <p> Really, the Radioactive Man and Titanium Man might be cool. Stan is Stark's best enemy in my opinion. <p> I'd buy them wedging ULTRON in as an enemy, after they make the Ant Man movie and have Ultron wander over to Iron Man's movies.
July 28, 2007, 12:57 p.m. CST
I know what you mean, but what hindsight do we have about Al Qaeda, middle east conflicts and Muslim fanatics? It could be a good idea, but I'm pretty sure it would end up being stereotyped BS to please the lowest common denominator and the media warmongers. <p> I'd rather watch an interesting story about the remnants of the cold war and how some people can scheme in the shadows of the war on terror without being spotted. That's precisely what happens in eastern europe, that's relevant, and the whole basis is not really more sophisticated than a 007 flick. I'd buy that. And with the proper trailer and marketing, even the most clueless, brainwashed moviegoer would be hyped for that, and could learn a thing or two in the process. So to me being faithful is an asset, it depends on the angle, the confidence the producers have in their property, and the focus on a more mature demographics. Not saying it must be R-rated, a PG-13 clever script is all I ask.
July 28, 2007, 1:47 p.m. CST
Lazy story writing will doom the movie if a balance of villian and hero is not done right.
July 28, 2007, 2:02 p.m. CST
Is there a geek alive that doesn't? Christ knows I do! I hope Favreau nails this sucker and Marvel can get the Hulk back on track after the Ang Lee disaster, leading to....Avengers Assemble!!!
July 28, 2007, 2:22 p.m. CST
but I'd rather sleep with Blair Butler. I love how she holds her mic real tight.
July 28, 2007, 3:12 p.m. CST
Requiem for a dream style: Ass to ass starring Olivia as Slave Leia and Blair Butler as a stormtrooper. Coming 2009 20th Century Fox/Vivid Video. Honestly, would it be any more damaging to the reputation of SW than the prequel trilogy? I think not. Also, for those of you disparaging Iron Man's gallery of rogues, you've obviously forgotten about Unicorn!
July 28, 2007, 3:37 p.m. CST
Your Kenvin aren't you But I'd rather Titty Fuck Leyla Kehlieh (sp)
July 28, 2007, 3:52 p.m. CST
Daaang that movie is too long. But Bob was great, made me want to see more of him on screen. So color me officially excited.
July 28, 2007, 4:20 p.m. CST
Does anybody have a link? YOU TUBE? Anyone? Oh, and Olivia Muun is a tasty morsel of geekgrrl goodness. Want to touch the heiny! Want to exchange fluids! Want to (censored)!
July 28, 2007, 4:42 p.m. CST
On one side I'm glad that The Manderin wont be like story's Dr. Doom he was a POS character but at the same time I'll miss the 10 rings and I think It could have been done believably.
July 28, 2007, 4:58 p.m. CST
Soooo Mandarin would be too "out there" but a guy who designs a flying suit with laser cannon hands is totally grounded in reality? Can we just fucking have a good comic book movie please? I'm becoming of the opinion that none of the major superhero movies have been good, period.
July 28, 2007, 5:58 p.m. CST
Well, I do like Obidah Stane, as the brains, but there were a set of bad guys in his employ, the Chessmen. Kinght, Bishop and Rook. Iron Monger/Stane is a good top villan.<p> How about Ultron, he is no less a part of Iron Man as Sandman was of SpiderMan.<p> But it is true, Iron Man was more character driven a story line. Less dependent on villains than other superheros. Stark was his own worst enemy a lot of the time. I remember another guy Stark fought a lot. Magma? or something like that. He had a battle armor and a moltan slag gun or something like that. Anyway, I always liked Iron Man, and I hope they do a good job with him.
July 28, 2007, 6:49 p.m. CST
I think a cool way to do Mandarin as more "believable" would be as a Chinese Corporate Mastermind / Super Scientist / Genetic Designer guy with somekind of super-enhancements in his body -- the whole nanobots, micromachines, genetech, supersoldier, supervirus thang; like a 'hard sci-fi' kinda set up. Make him a like a delusional, messianic, super-nationalist too; like he thinks he's some kind of god, or wants to become a god. That could also be a neat way to lead into the whole 'extremis' thing in the comics whereby Tony became actually bonded, on the genetic level, with his suit and, apparently, every piece of techonology on the planet (Stark has certainly become one spooky-ass fascist dood). This kind of "becoming more than man" theme would be a great thing for IRON MAN 2, with extremis-fortified Tony and genetech superman The Mandarin as mirrors of each other. I think it could be done in a 'realistic' way, but it would piss off the anal-retentive geeks to no small degree, but then again, they'd see it anyway, so their word means less than nothing.
July 28, 2007, 7:12 p.m. CST
by Mr Squirrel
Hey Jon I know you're reading this, you should have Downey reference that (Seinfeld) line, like 'what, you think I'm naked in there?' Or has shooting finished? Anyway, you're doing an awesome job we all love you very much. And congrats on losing the fatsuit!
July 28, 2007, 7:38 p.m. CST
you just helped me save 30 bucks from the doctor! Thanks. <p> Kidding aside... I'm pretty sure the footage must be uploaded on youtube by someone, somewhere, somehow... I'd like to preemptively (sp?) thank this kind person.
July 28, 2007, 9:23 p.m. CST
...but it sounds like the boy favreau has got this one nailed, rather. cant wait to see some footage from this - posters look nice, but i want to see how "gritty" it goes. this really could be superb.
July 28, 2007, 9:32 p.m. CST
I always liked his style. I can't wait for this flick to hit. Iron Man Indy AND Batman in the same year? HEAVEN.
July 28, 2007, 9:54 p.m. CST
Being anal-retentive, in this sense, would mean being absolutely resistant to any changes made in the comic in order to make it more accessible to the audience, or compress 30+ years of backstory into a cohesive 2 hour movie. You know that kind of thing that every fanboob whines about whenever a new comic book based movie comes out regardless of whether or not its any good? Not that it matters, since it seems the haters are the ones who wind up spending the most money on seeing these movies and buying their related products and services anyway (a kind of geeky consumer masochism, or just pretending to hate because, I dunno, yr still 10 years old or something). <br><br>Thinking my idea is lame, on the other hand, has nothing to do with being anal necessarily, it merely proves how much of an unimaginative, clueless dumbass you are. Of course, everyone is entitled to their worthless opinions, just as everyone is entitled to eventually die. Some thankfully sooner than others.
July 28, 2007, 10:05 p.m. CST
for a moment I thought you'd wish me cancer for disagreeing with you. But you wouldn't push it that far, would you? <p> But you're pretty imaginative for throwing names at perfect (and I dare say, peaceful) strangers. I give you that.
July 28, 2007, 10:15 p.m. CST
Two of us who are maybe a little touchy? Or was the initial insult meant to provoke some peaceful debate? I suppose it was merely a lack of communication. If so, appy polly logies! Perhaps we should each take a stress pill and think things over? Daisy... Daisy... tell me your answer true...
July 28, 2007, 10:31 p.m. CST
Skipped over most of this TB after I read that gay say the movie should be 90 mins. I love a movie that I can settle into and become a part of the world. Two and a half... three hours is fine as long as the acting is good. As long as TS doesn't start playing jazz piano out of the blue. I've got an attention span that likes to linger, I know it's not the best way to make a billion, but I love it when the movie slows down a little and lets the characters breathe.
July 28, 2007, 10:33 p.m. CST
I meant guy, not gay. Fnordian slip.
July 28, 2007, 10:42 p.m. CST
and I stand by my opinion. Maybe I should've replaced the "L" word with "shabby" or "not so good"... What kind of PC bullshit world did we live in? <p> If you think I'm wrong then prove me wrong with your big break in comicdom. But with such uncivilized manners I suggest you hire a ghostwriter for your cover letter.
July 28, 2007, 10:43 p.m. CST
July 29, 2007, 2:25 a.m. CST
Iron Man artistic GOD. 'Nuff said.
July 29, 2007, 2:39 a.m. CST
I found it in an IMDb thread. It looks awesome, although the guy playing Stark's rescuer in Afghanistan is only so-so. The Mark I suit battle is cool, and the flying scenes will be amazing on a big screen. They really play up the "Stark as a dick" angle, and it should make him a cool character to watch. Only a quick peek at Pepper and Bridges as Stane.
July 29, 2007, 2:53 a.m. CST
Hollywood's bullshit meter should be history by Summer 2008!
July 29, 2007, 4:48 a.m. CST
IRON MAN FOOTAGE
July 29, 2007, 7:51 a.m. CST
by Swiss Trev
July 29, 2007, 8:15 a.m. CST
by Swiss Trev
...he's on his honeymoon/celebratory road trip for crying out loud.....just cut him some slack dude - sometimes this site is on the ball and ahead of everyone else and sometimes they're a wee bit behind - heh!....some people have lives outside of internet geekdom you know?....family, friends, a life and stuff like that - try it sometime….peace.
July 29, 2007, 1:47 p.m. CST
Well, I understand the feeling that a superhero benefits from a supervillian to fight, but many aspects of the Mandarin as they appear in the books are difficult to translate to the screen. His costume (with a giant "M" on the front, which a Chinese man wouldn't wear, as he would have a different native script) would be silly. The idea of a man who has karate abilities that could damage Iron Man's armor is also silly. Lastly, the 10 rings the Mandarian wields in the comics might offer some interesting battles and CGI moments, but the concept is hard to ground in reality, as they seem to evoke magical powers. I'm just hoping for a more original and adult comic book movie than we've seen recently. Too bad they couldn't make an R-rated Iron Man. As for Iron Man's villians, I always liked the two Soviet armor foes (Crimson Dynamo and Titanium Man), but that might bring in stale elements, as the Cold War is supposedly over (although recent US-Russian relations are in the toilet, and Russia is arming America's enemies). Other villains I liked were Ultimo (controlled by the Mandarin, and who scared the crap out of me when I was a kid), The Blood Brothers ( a cool concept - separate them, and their strength lessens) and The Crusher. Here are some other villains off the top of my head, some of which may be too "one-note" to work effectively: Blizzard, The Melter, Whiplash, The Gladiator (those whirring blades in IM 7-8 were awesome), Hawkeye and the Black Widow, Madam Masque, The Spymaster (IM 117 was one of my favorites), The Controller (controlled minds and collected strength through metal discs on slave's heads), Firebrand, the Unicorn (his power horn was cool), The Freak (Happy Hogan after radiation), The Guardsman (a Stark friend and employee in Iron Man-like armor, motivated by revenge and mentally ill), and Ultron, Dr. Doom and Thanos (whom Iron Man fought alongside others). The trick is to jumpstart the Iron Man film world with villains that will be good characters and cinematically interesting, while retaining some sense of plausability. I guess that Favreau et al. thought that the most conventional villains would be best at the outset. Presenting a world in the opening film that included bizarre beings like Ultimo and the Blood Brothers, or pseudo magic powers like many of the other villains would have been dicey.
July 29, 2007, 2:25 p.m. CST
Seriosly, anyone who's seen the bootlegged version of the Comic Con footage does NOTHING but drool like an idiot. It's THAT good. Throw up a high quality version online, Jon! It can't help but drum up excitment for the movie.
July 29, 2007, 2:57 p.m. CST
by The Founder
IM is cool enough although little known outside the comic world to have his own film, but he fuctions better on The Avengers team. Hopefully this will lead up to an Avengers or Ultimates flick, which I think the Ulitmats is what marvel is going to go with over The Avengers.
July 29, 2007, 3:03 p.m. CST
by The Founder
Sorry to the IM fans but he doesn't. The Mandarin is probably his most popular and I'm not against what JF said. The Madarin is cartoonish and would need an update or a different take for a film. I'm against changes as much as the next guy, but he needs to altered somewhat for a film. As for IM's other villians most come across as hired muscle. The Blizzard or Whirlwind? Wasn't they hired by guys like Hammer to take out Stark or something? Don't get me wrong they could be cool visually for a fight, but a real Villian IM just doesn't have, well not certainly along the lines as say a Magneto to the Xmen.
July 29, 2007, 6:12 p.m. CST
Stan Winston is clearly in top form there.
July 29, 2007, 10:06 p.m. CST
July 30, 2007, 1:37 a.m. CST
If the Iron Man movie is a fraction as good as that ComicCon trailer then Mervel Studios is going to be batting 1,000 right out of the gate. Friggin Wow man. I gotta agree though that Jon really should put out a high res version of that trailer for us. It can only help his cause for this movie cause that trailer kicked some serious ass.
July 30, 2007, 1:48 a.m. CST
Meant to say Marvel Studios.
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