A few weeks ago, with the imminent release of Iron Man 3 in cinemas, talk on the internet soon turned to the future of the franchise. Or more accurately, Robert Downey Jr’s future?
From the moment Marvel unveiled the first trailer for the third instalment, comic book and comic movie fans where speculating whether RDJ would continue his portrayal for The Avengers 2 – due to be released in 2015!
Theories and whispers of who could replace RDJ picked up rather quickly, but the idea that the character could be taken on by another actor is an interesting one, and did get me thinking.
It’s fair to say that the character of Tony Stark is the metaphorical phoenix rising from the metaphorical ashes of RDJ’s career. RDJ was coming out of a dark period, both personally and professionally, and it’s no doubt that getting this role was certainly . But could there be anyone else for such a part?
The character is smart, quick-witted, sassy, and enigmatic – and I’d certainly argue Robert ticks all those boxes. Critics acclaim his performances in both the Iron Man movies and The Avengers as the best work of his career – he steals every scene he’s in, and is no doubt the main appeal for the new generation of cinema-goers, and more so behind the popularity of Marvel films.
The most fascinating aspect of any film release is the press run; interview after interview, chat show after chat show, panel ‘Q&A’ after panel ‘Q&A’, establishing a connection to characters and portrayals before you’re even in the cinema. Robert is a master of his craft when it comes to the promotional tour – just look at his interview with BBC Radio 1′s Chris Stark (the irony in the shared surname never fails to amuse me!).
The interview is lax and unconventional, purely relying on banter and charisma. This alone is proof enough for me that the already fine line between RDJ and Tony Stark has become blurred.. but maybe that’s a good thing? Perhaps that’s why we love RDJ, and perhaps that’s why without him, Tony Stark wouldn’t be Iron Man.