Breaking news: Marvel is reporting that Robert Downey Jr. will indeed reprise his role of Tony Stark/Iron Man in Joss Whedon’s The Avengers 2 and in the sequel after that, The Avengers 3. Iron Man 4 is not part of the two-film deal, which – at least for the moment – confirms GeekNation’s report from back in April.
There had been a ton of speculation about Downey’s future at Marvel after he publicly hinted that he was ready to hang up the Iron Man costume, and we even tossed up a list of candidates who might be able to fill Downey’s charismatic shoes. But Joss Whedon didn’t seem too bothered by all of RDJ’s jockeying in the press (which could have simply been a play to get an even bigger payday for these future films than the $50 million he received for the first Avengers movie), and the writer/director/Marvel godfather said he had no intention of making The Avengers 2 without the star.
But because this new contract is only for those two Avengers movies, it should be interesting to see how all of the films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe move forward without Tony Stark until the Avengers sequels pop up. The time between now and The Avengers 2 isn’t that long since that movie hits theaters in May of 2015 and we’ll have Thor 2, Cap 2, and Guardians of the Galaxy to keep us busy until then. But only seeing Tony once between Iron Man 3 and The Avengers 3 could present a storytelling challenge, considering he (and the agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) have been the ones holding the larger story together thus far.
Either way, we’re glad Downey is back to reprise this classic role. He really was born to play this character, and we’re excited to see where the MCU goes from here. Obviously we have the highest faith in Joss Whedon’s abilities, so we’re expecting great things from Marvel in the coming years. Thoughts?
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