By Greg Reifsteck
A brotherhood of creative riches is sure to make Iron Man 3 a success
Before heading out to the hell of Hall H and the general public the stars Iron Man 3 did a press junket for the press conference.
Stars Robert Downey, Jr. and Don Cheadle were joined by Marvel’s Production President Kevin Feige and the film’s director Shane Black. Black was brought in after Jon Favreau directed the first two films of the Iron Man franchise, and Feige was quick to point out that Marvel Studios is so in tune that they could probably plug any director into their system and make a great super hero movie.
Notorious screenwriter Black (who penned Lethal Weapon and The Last Boy Scout in the last few decades) agreed with this philosophy, since his directorial debut was the indie Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang, which starred Downey, Jr. Iron Man three is his first step up to big budget land and Marvel’s infrastructure made it a less daunting task.
“What surprised me frankly was how much generous help there was to me, that made it as easy as it could be. [Producer] Favreau was available to give me all kinds of tips and advice..he gave me that transitional feel that I needed. And Marvel as such an effective special effects machine that they could walk me through this process and hold my hand, and pretty much ensure that I was free to concentrate on story and character.”
“There is an idea for being big, but there is also an idea of upping the intensity that The Avengers managed to capture.” Shane continued when asked how this will compare to the phenomenon of the $600 million blockbuster. “That 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 going to get a ton of thrills into a short space.”
The kinship between Downey, Jr. and Black also forged a trust on set that is sure to add to the enjoyment of the film.
“Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang was one of my favorite experiences,” said Downey about his previous critically-acclaimed collaboration with Black. The script was practically perfect, but we improvised anyway.” To which Black quickly quipped, “You improvised anyway.”
“This time around…we all made enough mistakes together that we are all really seasoned at this point. The main this is that Shane is a storyteller. The kind of emotional depth that happens without taking itself too seriously is kind of what Jon has already set up,” Downey, Jr. continued about the creative camaraderie on the set. “There were times when Favreau, and I, and Don would be calling Shane when we had a big scene the next day. He actually asked that his payment once was that we pick him up a piece of salmon and some fresh blueberries. So he became known as Code Word: Blueberries. And he’s working for about the same fee now.”
Cheadle weighed in how his character Lt. Col. James ‘Rhodey’ Rhodes’s onscreen teamwork with Tony Stark will also be more prominent in Iron Man 3.
“I do suit up,” admitted Cheadle. “There are some different iterations that War Machine goes through in this movie. I don’t want to give too much away. It’s fun to see those things sort of morph and shift.”
Finally Downey, Jr. asked the press throng, “When does the kid in the Sharpie goatee get to ask a question?” The young journalist didn’t disappoint when he asked Downey the touching question of how he felt about playing a hero.
The classy Downey, Jr. responded, “Well I think I speak for any of us that get to live in this world…I take it as seriously as Shakespeare.”