Robert Downey Jr. on Iron Man Potentially Being Recast After ‘The Avengers 2′

Published 2 years ago by

iron man3 Robert Downey Jr. on Iron Man Potentially Being Recast After The Avengers 2

Robert Downey Jr. has become synonymous with Marvel hero Iron Man (A.K.A. Tony Stark) ever since the character’s first big screen appearance in 2008. The hero has since evolved into the most bankable and recognizable character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, Downey’s contract with Marvel Studios expires after the upcoming Iron Man 3, leaving his continued involvement in the role up in the air.

Previously, Downey said that he would be hesitant to turn his back on the character. Of course, that statement was predicated on the continued high quality and warm audience reception to Marvel’s cinematic efforts, and after The Avengers, audience goodwill is surely at an all-time high for the studio’s second slate of films.

Now, in an interview with Empire (via Comic Book Movie), Downey has again responded to the possibility that he may eventually hang up his metallic hat:

“Let’s just say that the only thing I ever let go of had claw marks in it. There’s a little bit of soul reclamation going on. I feel that the first time I played Tony, I did it best. Sorry! The affinity with Tony now is: How do you sustain something? I’m not stupid, I like to play ball, I love the company, I love the character, and the business side of things, I’m not too picky about that either.”

Funny that Downey should mention the business side of things. The billion-dollar success of The Avengers gives him tremendous leverage in renegotiating his contract, should he choose to do so. However, he does seem far more at ease with the idea of letting someone else step into Stark’s shoes than in previous comments.

“[Recasting] would probably be the best thing in the world for me. You know, ego…but sometimes ego just has to be smashed. Let’s see what happens. I take the audience very seriously – I feel bad when I see folks doing movies and the audience is like, ‘Don’t do that anymore.’ I don’t have to overstay my welcome…”

iron man 32 570x356 Robert Downey Jr. on Iron Man Potentially Being Recast After The Avengers 2

If the actor bows out, Marvel would likely go the recasting route as the studio seems intent on keeping Stark around for a good long while (or at least through The Avengers 2). Kevin Feige had this to say about the character’s involvement in Phase Two:

“Tony’s going to carry on. ‘Avengers 2′ already has a release date!”

Audiences have thus far responded overwhelmingly well to Downey’s take on Tony Stark, and it could be argued that the actor is largely responsible for the success of Iron Man. So it’s largely in Marvel’s best interest to keep him onboard for as long as possible. We expect Downey to at least appear throughout Phase Two (potentially helping to kick off the cosmic side of things in Guardians of the Galaxy).

However, if he does decide to part ways with Marvel, who would you like to see step into the role? Let us know in the comments.

Iron Man 3 is directed by Shane Black, from his and Drew Pearce’s screenplay. It stars Robert Downey Jr., Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Jon Favreau, Rebecca Hall, William Sadler, James Badge Dale and the voice of Paul Bettany.

Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe begins when Iron Man 3 releases May 3rd, 2013, followed by Thor: The Dark World on November 8th, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4th, 2014, and Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1st, 2014. It concludes with The Avengers 2 on May 1st, 2015.

Source: Empire [via Comic Book Movie]

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  1. There’s no doubt that RDJ IS Iron Man. If he leaves, then all of us MCU fans teary eyed. I know that he’s aging, and you need to replace him, but man… He’s like, unreplacable. Well, probably the only thing to make him stay long after phase 3 ended is those mocap like they did to Jeff Bridges in TRON Legacy. Still, no other man can replace RDJ.

  2. It seems that everybody is holding onto an emotional connection to RDJ’s amazing portrayal of our favourite, Genius, Billionaire, Playboy, Philanthropist.

    Its just a little ridiculous to suggest that you’ll ditch the entire MCU because you don’t like the idea that Tony may be recast. Its bound to happen.
    This reminds me of the debate about whether or not Spiderman needed another origin story… we’re going through the motions here.

    Loath the idea.
    Snatch up every snippet of information till it happens.
    Go see the movie we vowed to avoid, anyway.

    They’ll recast and good or bad…
    You know you’ll go see it…

    • If it’s bad, you will see it once, and many will stay away based on reviews.

      A bad replacement will certainly result in a drop in box office.

    • @ Skikit

      There’s truth im what you’re saying but gotta understand how people would feel about it when someone could replace RDJ as Ironman. It’s like the same stuff i hear from people who think Christian Bale should be Batman again in WB/DC’s shared universe instead of someone else & the thought no-one is gonna equal or top Ledger’s Joker down the road. You’re right people will still see the film. If The Avengers 2 is RDJ’s last film as Ironman, so be it. He gave us nice run in the role. like him, so will Evans & everyone else involved in Marvel’s universe.

    • Are you saying the new Spider-Man didn’t suck lol because I can’t think of a more forgettable comic movie with that kinda budget. It was terrible. lol

  3. why replace him, just hold off on iron man movies for awhile and make him a background character.

  4. RDJ is Tony Stark, no doubt about it. Whenever I see him on tv, handing out an Golden Globe for example, I just see Tony Stark.

    I’m not a great fan of the Iron Man movies, or any other Marvel movie except for The Avengers, but RDJ makes those movies. He steals every scene. It’s all so naturel.

    Will I quit watching the MCY if RDJ leaves? No. Will I be heavely disappointed? Yes. The MCU is far too great to leave behind if one actor leaves, but it will ruin it a bit. Can’t think of any actor replacing him either. As far as him getting older, that really shouldn’t change things. I mean, look at Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone.

  5. do we need 8 to 10 iron man movies? no. if and when rdj is done worth iron man, that should be the end of iron mman movies period, this will allow for more marvel franchises to get the movie treatment as well as leave rdj’s amazing performance of Tony stark un-tarnished.
    I would be happy with 3 iron man movies 2 avengers appearances and all the cameos in the world

    • Agreed! Best Comment on the topic

    • @Kyle: Agreed 100%!!! We don’t need anymore IRONMAN films either in my opinion. It just eventually waters down the product. It is hard to keep the ‘magic’ going. Even the best actors have been in bad movies.

      Besides, they need to make way for Ms. Marvel, Black Panther, who knows maybe even a Yellow Jacket film. Now that would be original and fresh.

    • Yes, this exactly.

  6. Well, it’s inevitable that he’ll leave the role that sparked his second comeback some day. The guy has charisma, no doubt; he is beloved by the Comic Con faithful, and is probably the single most important person that put Marvel comic book films on the map (IMHO).

    What makes him special is his ability to improv; several scenes in Iron Man benefited directly from this skill.

    The next person who takes over MUST have this ability to succeed.

  7. Robert Downy Jnr. is the best choice for Iron-Man, who could replace someone who is the face of one of the biggest superhero franchises out there. seriously. f**k off!

    • You sound a little hurt by this news. I like how deeply the idea of a man making a business decision for, not only himself but for the sake of the character, is affecting you.

    • you mad bro over something that might not even happen??

  8. RDJ made the part his own. To replace him with someone else they would have to be even better for it to fly and that wouldn’t be very easy considering the momentum RDJ has built up over three films, soon to be four with Iron Man 3 of becoming Iron Man personified…

  9. actualy, rhodey did take his place for a while, but then tony came back, I am still thinking TIME-SLIP scenario

  10. I would rather they just replace Iron Man with another armored hero instead of recasting. But I guess RDJ can’t play him forever, I just have no clue who could take the Iron Man throne.

  11. I think RDJ could carry on the role some more. I’m not saying more solo Iron Man movies are needed, but that the very least Tony Stark needs to stay even if he’s not wearing his armour.

    There were discussions about this earlier. Director of SHIELD, Secretary of Defence. Tony Stark has many roles to fill besides being Iron Man.

    So even if Marvel wants to make space for the new line of heroes in their Avengers movies, Tony Stark should remain, even if only to a Samuel L Jackson capacity.

    That sort of role RDJ could carry on for a long time. The question is, whether he wants to. He is definitely not overstaying his welcome, because people are anything but tired of him as Tony.

    I think it’s up to him. It would be very weird to get used to a new Tony Stark, especially if the other guys remain the same. Like Chris Evans and Hemsworth etc.

    I don’t know. I will keep watching the movies, but I think a recast is way too soon.

    Please stay with us, Robert!

    • Very well said. I completely agree.
      (Just to make it clear, I didn’t blatantly copy your comment ;). I was already writing my comment before I saw you posted pretty much everything I wanted to say)

  12. Please don’t leave yet Robert… please.

    I know RDJ can’t play Tony Stark forever, but I think he should at least stick around till Avengers 3. IMO that would be a great way of ending his run as Iron Man (with an IM trilogy, and an Avengers trilogy completed).

    And if he wants to stay on after that, then that’s great too! I’ve always said Stark doesn’t need to be a young character in the MCU. He can grow old as the actor grows old and he’ll still have an important part to play (even if it’s not in the suit anymore). He could, for example, become director of SHIELD or even Secretary of Defense (as hinted in IM2). That would take the character in a different direction that I think would be perfect for RDJ as he gets older (it’ll give him something new to play around with, and it’ll be less time consuming because it’s only a supporting role).

    All that said, fanboyism and wishful thinking aside, thinking only in terms of money, Disney/Marvel would be insane to let, arguably, their biggest box office draw slip through their fingers at such a crucial point in the game. Phase 2 & 3 are all but clearly waters and blue skies at the moment (if that isn’t an expression, it is now ;)) and letting RDJ go and replacing him after IM3 (or even Avengers 2) would definitely hurt business.

    • i hope he sticks around even longer then avengers 3 =D

  13. I can imagine someone replacing Evans as Cap, I can imagine someone replacing Hemsworth as Thor, I can imagine someone (once again) replacing Ruffalo as Hulk, I can imagine someone replacing Jackson as Nick Fury, I can imagine someone replacing Renner as Hawkeye and I even can imagine someone replacing Johansson as Black Widow. But I absolutey cannot imagine anyone ever replacing Downey Jr. as Tony Stark. If they are going to replace him they might as well kill off the character altogether.

    As for havng leverage: I doubt that Disney/Marvel are as sentimental about RDJ as we are. They already have proven multiple times that they have no qualms about kicking people out over creative or monetary differences. Sure, RDJ is a fan favourite, but if he asks for too much money and doesn’t back down he’ll be gone all the same.

  14. I say, Robert should play Ironman for as long as he wants to. But it may come down to the studio as well, because they balk at high salaries for movie stars. Eventhough an A-lister may command between 15-25 million a picture ( prehaps more ) the studio still wants more of that profit in their corner.
    I love robert’s take on the character, but eventually he will be recast or he may have finally had his fill with the character.

  15. I have tremendous respect for RDJ after his thoughts on this. He is aware of how everything works and why this can’t go on forever.

    I won’t have expectations. I didn’t expect to like Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man over Tobey Maguire, but I do. And thats rare for me because from 2002 to 2007, Tobey WAS Spider-Man. I didn’t like the idea of replacing him at all. You can say all you want about Maguire, but he left a tremendous impact on people who just went to the movies. They loved him, I loved him (still do), he’s always going to be the first person that comes to mind when you say Spider-Man whether you like it or not.

    So yeah, I really like RDJ as Iron Man, but I’m not going to bash any idea of recasting.

  16. The box office dollars will determine if the audience is tired of him or not.

  17. No IT WOULD NOT WORK! I didn’t like it when they recast Howard for Cheadle for a side character, let alone recast the main guy. It would more than ruin Iron Man, it would kill him… My opinion anyway.

  18. Who cares? We already have 4 movies with him as iron man anyway. its not like we’d be getting jipped

  19. I believe his comment was taken out of context. An actor wouldn’t refer to himself making the decision to leave as “recasting.” It appears that he was asked how he would feel if the STUDIO decided to recast the role, not if he decided to leave. It didn’t sound to me as if HE was thinking about leaving the role.

  20. Bigger problem maybe is which actor is going to want to follow in RDJ’s boots. That’s alot of pressure.

  21. I love RDJ as Iron Man. I don’t think it would be wise to recast the character. I’d love to see RDJ’s IronMan appear in Avengers 2 and then Marvel can hang up the Iron Man aspect of their franchise for a while so they can focus on other characters and so that Avengers 3 can have a different lineup. Keep RDJ, don’t spoil by re-casting. Personally I think Avengers 3 should be the climax of the marvel cinematic universe and then they can ‘start over’ in a different direction. We can keep the same film universe going forever like we can with the actual comic books. People age and move on.

  22. NO! A resounding NO! Absolutely NOT! I adore Robert as Tony Stark. To me he is positively perfect for the role, and I hope he does not decide to walk away from it.

  23. not a big fan of the iroman series but rdj IS ironman nobody can replace him. i wouldnt mind seeing his great grandson take over (ironman armormed adv.) but other than that its whatever to me…but in my own opinion….rdj wouldve made a VERY LEGIT DOCTOR STRANGE

  24. Meh, i don’t particularly like recasts at all. That falls into the same line as “reboots”, “reimagination”. It’s totally unneeded. If something overstays its welcome, let it end. Good actors can decide for themselves when enough is enough.
    RDJ does a great job. It’s really his call.

  25. Nicolas Cage

  26. What about that guy who played Tony’s dad in Captain America?

    • So you want Tony’s dad to be Tony as well? I think the universe would explode if something like that happened.

    • ….That just might work….

  27. I’d rather they have him die (Avengers 2, anyone?). And then have a different character take up the role of IronMan. It would give them the chance to do something different and totally unexpected. Who kills a well-loved character like that?

    Joss Whedon, that’s who

    • I agress with that. if he does quit, no ill-will against him at least make a sorry out of his leaving. Like the did on Charmed when one of them got cut for drug abuse (lol). Out like Charlie Sheen in Two & a Half Men. If he drops out before the Avengers have him die off after the Mandarin or in Guardians of the Galaxy. Just a thought.


  28. Robert Downey Jr, at this point IS Tony Stark. It’s one of those performances that has changed the voice that I hear in my head when I read a character’s lines in the comics.
    If Downey wants out then he’ll be sorely missed, but I’d rather see an Avengers novie without Iron Man altogether than with Iron Man played by someone else. At least that gives him the chance to keep coming back for guest appearances in future installments if, as I hope, this franchise is a long-runner.

  29. Its just a movie folks, I didnt raised an eyebrow when I heard it was Rufalo and not Norton playing hulk and that turnd out ok, and yes it was different studios but tell me u didnt wince when u heard the human torch was now cap and that workd out, id say someone like pierce bronson or john stamos (ER Version) or a mathew fox….my opinion anyways