Robert Downey Jr. Dishes on the Shane Black Approach to 'Iron Man 3'
Since February of this year, we've know that Kiss Kiss Bang Bang director Shane Black would be at the helm of Iron Man 3, and while writer Drew Pearce was hired by Marvel to script the sequel, Black is also heavily involved on the writing side of things as well. Since then, we've heard that the film would be similar to a Tom Clancy-like thriller where Iron Man faces off against villains that are more true to real-life. Now franchise star Robert Downey Jr. has recently opened up to Hero Complex to talk about Black's approach to the film, and how both of them are so completely in tune with each other as collaborators. More below!
From the get-go, it sounds like the effort being put into this sequel should help it overcome the speedbumps that seemed to plague the second, convoluted film. Downey says, "My sense of it is that we need to leave it all on the field — whatever that means in the end. You can pick several different points of departure for that." So with Favreau stepping away from the franchise for Black to sit in the director's chair, Downey is confident it was the best choice saying, "Bringing in Shane Black to write and direct Iron Man 3 to me is basically the only transition from Favreau to a 'next thing' that Favreau and the audience and Marvel and I could ever actually sign off on."
And since we've heard that there were more than a few disagreements during Iron Man 2, it's essentially a miracle that they were all able to agree on anything. But as collaborators, Downey and Black don't seem to have any disagreements (so far) and pretty much just know what each other wants and will ultimately deliver. Downey speaks highly of Black and his work:
"He's more than the sum of his parts and he's also kind of been a sleeper for a long time. We're not talking much about [the script] right now because Shane is off writing and we talked before that and when we are talking again the talking is going to be over pretty quick [because we're on the same page]. It's kind of like we're fighting on the same side and at the same time we're circling each other, so it's all great. It should be great."
It's always good to hear about such great cooperation and intuition with a lead actor and director, especially since the two came together so fantastically in the dark comedic film noir Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. The question is whether we can expect some of the style from that film, the only film Black has directed, coming into the Iron Man universe, specially some of the self-referential or "meta" moments within the film. Downey says: "The thing about Shane is that it will be anything but one of those moments, unless we come up with something that is so cheeky and character-driven and perfect that it has to be in the movie."
That's always good to hear. But what may not be so great is if Tony Stark's loyal sidekick Happy Hogan is written into the film, Marvel will certainly have their hands full negotiating to get Jon Favreau to reprise the role in the sequel. I can't wait to see how that deal comes about, but more importantly, I can't wait to see what Shane Black brings to the Iron Man franchise. We'll be watching this closely at it continues to develop at Marvel with The Avengers finishing up shooting soon. Does it sound like they're on the right path?