Director Jon Favreau Talks Iron Man 2, Avengers

Jon Favreau Talks Iron Man 2, Avengers

In a live chat hosted Wednesday afternoon by the L.A. Times writer Geoff Boucher, Iron Man director Jon Favreau answered questions from Boucher and fans about the state of the Iron Man sequel and Marvel Studios' Avengers movie. While not getting into too great of detail, Favreau reconfirmed that Marvel's plans include very direct ties between not only Iron Man 2, but their other upcoming films as well.

"We're playing with who the villain should be and what we should incorporate from the comic book. And how it will lead into the Avengers," responded the director, asked about what he's currently working on in regards to Iron Man 2. "I'm working with Justin [Theroux] a writer. He's writing the first draft of the script. I'm working with a story board artist. As well as designing the costumes for good guys and bad guys."

Addressing the link between 2010's Iron Man 2 and the 2011 Avengers film, Favreau wrote, "Now that Marvel is making its own movies every movie has to fit into the Marvel Universe. The Avengers incorporates not just Iron Man but Thor, possibly Hulk, and traditionally Captain America as well. As it is scheduled Thor will come out the same summer as Iron Nan 2. Captain America will come out a few months before Avengers. All the films have to come together to create a consistent Universe. That's very important to everyone involved.

Asked if he will meet with the filmmakers of Marvel's other "Universe" films, in an effort to coordinate stories for the Avengers movie, Favreau replied, "I think it's important for all filmmakers working for Marvel to collaborate so there is a consistency in the films, so yes they should keep in touch. I had not been in touch really with Louis [Leterrier] during Hulk and I think that would have been helpful. I hope to be in contact with directors in the future."

The director was asked if the Iron Man comic book villain the Mandarin is still the frontrunner to be the main villain in Iron Man 2.

"The Mandarin is still an important figure in the Iron Man Universe, wrote Favreau. "We have an interesting take on him that allows us to incorporate the whole pantheon of villains. The whole 10 Rings thing in Iron Man 1 was a good tease for it."

"The sequel is shaping up to incorporate Tony's vision for the future", wrote the director as a general response to several fan questions. "What happens after he says, 'I am Iron Man?'"

Asked if Nick Fury will appear in Iron Man 2, Favreau responded, "S.H.I.E.L.D. is important to the franchise, and what is S.H.I.E.L.D. without Fury?"

In response to numerous fan requests for War Machine in Iron Man 2, Favreau seemed to have good news...

"We need War Machine. Agreed. Shoulder cannons and all," he replied.

As to Tony Stark's alcoholism, the director raised fan's expectations it will be dealt with eventually, although perhaps not as an "A" storyline. "Stark has issues with booze," wrote Favreau. "That's part of who he is. I don't think we'll ever do the Leaving Las Vegas version, but it will be dealt with."

On some more random comments, Favreau stated that the only other comic book character he is currently interested in adapting to film is Groo, he not involved in a John Carter of Mars big screen adaptation, that his seven year old son thought Iron Man was the second-best film of 2008 ... #1 was Kung Fu Panda, that actor Sam Rockwell would have made a good Tony Stark if Robert Downey Jr. was unavailable, and that Gwyneth Paltrow is funnier than both Downey Jr. and Vince Vaughn.

Back to Iron Man 2, asked about his previous comments (before he officially signed onto the sequel) expressing concerns about having enough time to make the (now) May, 2010 release date, Favreau responded, "The date is daunting. We are making much faster progress than the first time around and have much less to design and fewer casting issues. I am confident that 2010 is achievable if we continue working together as we have for the past few months. It has to be great, though. It has to be great."

Asked if he has an all-time favorite Iron Man comic book writer and artist, Favreau gave a shout out to two current creators...

The new [Matt] Fraction books are pretty great," he replied. "We flew him out to L.A. to discuss story. He's a great comic writer. Also, love Adi [Gravov's] art. He will work on the movie's designs."

Asked to comment on the dynamic of more grounded "real world" vs. classic comic book villains, and on how to marry the two, the director wrote, "I think we need some version of 'classic villains' in these movies. Many don't hold up well to time and to the big screen, but their essence should inspire the characters."

Asked of the possibility of a female villain/new love interest in the sequel, Favreau replied "Female villain... Now there's an interesting notion."

Asked about Iron Man 2 being shot in IMAX... "Tough to actually shoot in IMAX when you have a CG hero much of the time," he wrote in response. "The effects become very expensive and may not look as good in the higher resolution. Worked very well for DK [Dark Knight], though." 

Finally, expanding upon a previous exchange, Favreau said he plans to explore the celebrity status of Tony Stark/Iron Man...

"Iron Man is indeed a celebrity. He announced who he was and we have now officially departed from the standard secret ID superhero. Tony was already famous before the announcement. What would really happen if this went down? Fun to explore." 

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