The Kidd here...
May is a lot closer than you think, as IRON MAN 3 will be right on top of us before you know it, setting off Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Marvel Studios builds towards an AVENGERS sequel in 2015. With Favreau gone and Shane Black in at the helm for Tony Stark's next chapter, there has been plenty of questions as to how exactly this first solo film post-AVENGERS would gel with the rest of the Universe, bringing each individual characters' experiences from the ensemble piece and how it'll now affect them into the mix. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige is now happy to start providing a few answers - although the rest I'm sure you'll be happy to wait until May 3 to learn on your own. Talking to MTV News, Feige explained a bit how the events of THE AVENGERS will shape the Tony Stark we're about to see this time out.
"It's almost like post-traumatic stress: he really has retreated after the events of 'The Avengers' into his workshop, where he's building advanced versions of his suits. He has [designed] a version of the suit that can latch onto him in individual pieces ... anytime, anywhere. As he starts to realize, it's basically because he doesn't want to be out of the suit: he's seen a lot of things in 'Avengers' and has encountered a lot of powerful people, much more powerful than he is."
"It brings us back to the Tony we met in the first part of 'Iron Man' where he's removed from that convoy and brought to the cave with nothing but a box of scraps. It's fun for all of us to watch Tony try to figure out how to get out of that scenario. Much of the movie is Tony in the middle of the country without his tools and a fairly broken suit to help him. But that's his superpower: he wasn't born on Asgard, he wasn't hit by gamma rays, and he doesn't have the super soldier serum. His power is his brain. It's fun to put Tony Stark in a corner with nothing and see how he can get out of it."
As for the Mandarin, this appears to be a bit of a shift from the villain fans may have become familiar with in the comics. This isn't going to be a straight-from-the-page interpretation of the character following a strict story arc from the books either. There will be plenty of recognizable elements from the Mandarin you'ce come to know over the years, but anyone looking for an exact replica may want to start lowering their expectations now.
"We felt there was leeway to explore the Mandarin in a way that hasn't been explored before. We found we couldn't point to any sort of definitive Mandarin story in the comics — but if you print this, I'm sure a million fans will point to a specific story — so as we've done with many of the films, we did an amalgamation. The Mandarin is relentless: he's a non-stop threat, and you've seen that in the first teaser trailer when Tony Stark's house tumbles into the sea. He doesn't mess around, this guy."
Shane Black looks to have IRON MAN 3 lined up to go to some pretty dark places, but, if I had to bet, that may put us in a position to see Robert Downey Jr.'s best character work as the genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist yet.
"The Infamous Billy The Kidd"
Follow me on Twitter.
Like me on Facebook.