Much of the success of the current Marvel movie-verse rests on the shoulders of Robert Downey Jr. His heartfelt, hilarious, off the cuff performance in the first Iron Man flick transformed Tony Stark from a mid-level hero into a pop culture icon. So you have to wonder, what happens to Iron Man when Downey decides he’s done being the millionaire playboy, Tony Stark? Chances are, Downey won’t want to play superhero forever, so what does Marvel do when their star moves on?
Badass Digest caught up with producer Kevin Feige at CinemaCon and asked him whether Marvel will look to reboot the Iron Man franchise after Downey’s departure or would they continue on with a new actor, à la James Bond?
I think Bond is a good example. Let’s put it this way: I hope Downey makes a lot of movies for us as Stark. If and when he doesn’t, and I’m still here making these movies, we don’t take him to Afghanistan and have him wounded again. I think we James Bond it.
I’m not sure if it’s Feige who deserves the credit, but whoever is planning the Marvel movie-verse is one smart cookie. They caught on quick that if they wanted an Avengers movie down the road they needed to start planting those seeds early on, and proposing to not reboot the Iron Man franchise once Downey leaves is another bold move in superhero movies. How not the norm is it to continue on with a different actor in the role without rebooting your franchise? Okay, so the Batman films under Schumacher did that as did The Incredible Hulk with Edward Norton, but what franchise has done that successfully? I think Marvel might be able to pull it off, that is if they cast the right successor and put their new Iron Man in solid movie, which might be asking a lot.
Then again, reboots are all the rage. Superman’s currently starting a new series with Zach Snyder and Henry Cavill, Spider-Man is going back to high school, and you know Warner Bros. is already planning more Batman films without Christopher Nolan. But with Marvel’s character so ingeniously intertwined a reboot of one would affect the whole set.
So, yea bastards, what would like to see in the future for Iron Man? We know Downey won’t be there forever, as much as it grieves me to say so, who would you like to see takeover? Would you prefer a reboot or do you want Marvel to “James Bond” it?