Actress Rebecca Hall, who played Maya Hansen in Iron Man 3 says her role in the film was intially much bigger - in fact, she was originally meant to be the main villain. However, Marvel Entertainment reportedly "vetoed" that decision saying a female villain would not sell toys.
“That’s 100% true,” Hall said, speaking in support of her new film Christine at the Toronto International Film Festival (via the Toronto Sun). This supports statements previously made by Iron Man 3 director Shane Black.
“I’ve been gagging to talk about it with someone, but I haven’t had the opportunity, weirdly.”
“I signed on to do something that was a substantial role. She wasn’t entirely the villain – there have been several phases of this – but I signed on to do something very different to what I ended up doing," explained Hall. “Halfway through shooting they were basically like, ‘What would you think if you just got shot out of nowhere?’ I was meant to be in the movie until the end... I grappled with them for awhile and then I said, ‘Well, you have to give me a decent death scene and you have to give me one more scene with Iron Man,’ which Robert Downey Jr. supported me on.”
Hall followed these statements up by criticizing Marvel's slow build to a female-led superhero film, saying “Look, [Marvel] is paying for their mistakes right now,” she smiled, “and I applaud them for casting Brie Larson in Captain Marvel. Hallelujah. It’s about time women started being the heroes of things. They can also be the anti-heroes of the things and that’s what I feel I’m getting to do with Christine.”