Ben Kingsley Returning For Undisclosed Marvel Project

Published 1 year ago by , Updated October 29th, 2013 at 12:33 am,

Ben Kingsley Mandarin Trevor Slattery Ben Kingsley Returning For Undisclosed Marvel Project

[Update: Ben Kingsley’s secret project might be a Marvel One-Shot introducing the “real” Mandarin.]

Iron Man 3 is not only Marvel’s second biggest success to date, but it’s the fifth biggest film of all-time according to worldwide box office numbers. Despite its popularity among moviegoers however, the most loyal of Marvel Comics fans may have taken issue with how Iron Man 3 was arguably the least faithful to the source material. Building off of two Iron Man movies before it, both directed by Jon Favreau who was very concerned about staying true to the comics in his first take on the property, the trilogy conclusion finally introduced the Mandarin, the archenemy of Iron Man. The long-awaited arrival suffice to say, wasn’t what fans were expecting. And he’s not done yet.

Iron Man 3 may mark the end of Robert Downey Jr. solo movies with Disney and Marvel Studios, but it doesn’t necessarily represent the end of one of his most interesting “foes” – if we can even use that descriptor. Ben Kingsley, who was cast as the Mandarin and praised for his powerful performance by peers before the film’s release, was actually part of the biggest twist the Marvel Cinematic Universe has delivered yet, but arguably the most controversial for comic book fans since it drastically changed a key villainous character from the Marvel library.

Advertised and disguised as the Mandarin, Kingsley’s character is revealed in Iron Man 3 to be no more than a drug-addicted actor named Trevor Slattery who is used in as a decoy in Iron Man 3 - a fictional terrorist of sorts to take the blame (and news headlines) for a series of attacks and events orchestrated by the true antagonist of Iron Man 3 - Guy Pearce’s Aldrich Killian. By the end if the film, Killian is seemingly killed, while Slattery lives on, seemingly in custody.

Speaking with the Belfast Telegraph, Kingsley confirmed that he’s returning to Marvel for an undisclosed project, one where he gets to work again with the Iron Man 3 crew.

“It’s a secret Marvel project. I’m not allowed to say any more, you’re going to have to wait and see… I was with many members of the crew that were involved in Iron Man 3. It was lovely to see them again. It was great to be with this wonderful family.”

“I think they have enormous taste as creative artists. There’s nothing lazy or gratuitous about their work. They are at the top of their game, and they’re great company to keep.”

If Marvel is bringing Kingsley back, and he’s admittedly working with the same crew as before, then it’s a safe bet that he’s going to reprise his comedic role as the drunken Brit actor Trevor Slattery. Is Marvel designing a Marvel One-Shot short film around the character for some laughs, perhaps to attach to the home video release of Thor: The Dark World or Captain America: The Winter Soldier? Hayley Atwell had the chance to reprise her role as Peggy Carter in the Agent Carter Marvel One-Shot attached to the Iron Man 3 Blu-ray which may be leading to her own television series.

iron man 3 mandarin kingsley Ben Kingsley Returning For Undisclosed Marvel Project

It’s also possible that the character going to make an appearance in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. television series, not unlike the Samuel L. Jackson cameo in the show’s second episode, although that wouldn’t explain why he’s working again with some of the Iron Man 3 crew. We’re going to stick with our Marvel One-Shot theory.

Whatever the project is that brings Kingsley back into the fold, it’s odd to take a touchy subject for fans of the books – the significant altering of the character from the books – and play with it even more, unless of course the powers that be are going to put the Slattery character on the path to becoming the actual Mandarin he was always meant to be. Wouldn’t that be neat? Qualms aside about how Shane Black decided to use the Mandarin in Iron Man 3, no one can deny that Kingsley’s surprising performance as Slattery was wildly entertaining.


Iron Man 3 is now available on home video. Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014The Avengers: Age of Ultron on May 1, 2015, Ant-Man on July 31, 2015, and unannounced films for May 6 2016, July 8 2016 and May 5 2017.

Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes for your Marvel movie news!

Source: Belfast Telegraph


Follow Rob Keyes on Twitter @rob_keyes
TAGS: Iron man 3
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  1. It’s a set up for Iron Man 4

    Trevor fooled us all. He’s really the Mandarin, he’s given the rings by Thanos after the Thor 2 breakout, and after Avengers defeat Ultron in A2, he adopts a suit of armor and upgrades a leviathan (Fin Fang Foom). Iron Man 4 will likely happen in summer 2016.

    It’s possible… Rdj might want to rectify IM3.

    • You sir said what I have been saying… he “panicked, but then handled it…”

      • I would take back most of the bad things I’ve said about IM3 if that is the way they take it. The way they destroyed the character is absolutely unforgivable, unless they didn’t actually destroy him, and he was really fooling everybody all this time. Making the Mandarin and actor is like making Lex Luthor a homeless man with long hair, and making him Superman’s number one fan. It’s just not right.

        • What the likes of you seem to endlessly fail to realize since the movie was released is that THEY DID NOT MAKE THE MANDARIN AN ACTOR. It’s quite the opposite: they made an actor a stand-in for the Mandarin. Retconning IM3′s best part because of the pressure of a loud minority of angry fanboyz would show a huge lack of balls on Marvel’s part as well as some serious inconsistence after their bold move of altering this most ridiculous cliché villain in such an interesting way.

  2. Perhaps for the Iron Man ride for Hong Kong Disneyland. Helema Bohnam Carter just did a short film for a new Harry Potter ride at Universal Orlando. Could be the same deal.

  3. “Comics fans may have taken issue”. You’ve got to be kidding. From the comments posted so far, it is clear that many of us have issues in the way The Mandarin was portrayed. You should not hire such a talented actor just for comic relief.

    For that, the studio could have hired a comedian.

    • But The Mandarin was portrayed brilliantly.

      He was a figure of fear for a lot of it and then he had a great fight scene at the end.

      The scene in the mansion where Kingsley revealed his true name and reasons for being there wasn’t him as The Mandarin, it was him playing Trevor. Everything before and after that one scene is most definitely Mandarin, despite being two different people for different reasons.

      Therefore, Mandarin got to be scary, threatening and dangerous. If fellow comic book fans can’t see that then they really should avoid movies where information isn’t spoon fed to them over the course of the movie’s run time.

      • That’s not why comic book fans are upset.
        We are upset because they made a joke out of Iron Man’s greatest villain after somewhat setting the Mandarin to be a very real thing within the other films.

        Hopefully this thing with Kingsley is a Marvel One-Shot, or the people at Marvel are actually listening to the comic book fans and end up bringing him back as the real Mandarin. (I think the whole thing needs to die)

        • Careful, Will. If you disagree with Dazz’ love of the “Mandarin Twist,” he considers you to be a mouth-breathing idiot. Even though the majority of fans disagree with his opinion.

        • I am a comic book fan but I’ve always found the original comic version of the Mandarin to be a much overly campy joke, so I had no problem with the change. The fact that he was no longer half-chinese bugged me a little at first until I saw Ben Kingsley’s outstanding performance (both pre- and post-twist). Also, whether you liked the change or not, IM3′s Mandarin still was Iron Man’s most dangerous foe.

          I doubt Kingsley will come back as the real Mandarin since it actually was Killian all along. Killian’s body was never shown so it’s safe to assume he’s not dead and Extremis restored him, so we might see him returning as a full-fledged Mandarin in the future, especially considering the reappearance of Extremis in AoS. They’ll more likely turn Kingsley’s Slattery into a whole different villain using his acting skills (Chameleon?). Possible leads:
          - The Chameleon once fought Hank Pym for HYDRA (villain in Ant-Man movie?);
          - He was part of MODOK’s Eleven (resurrection of AIM without Killian?);
          - He plotted against Iron Man by impersonating Cap until exposed by Giant-Man (links to 3 of the MCU Avengers, Slattery likely to develop a grudge againt Stark after serving jail time).

        • @will. What’s all this “we comic book fans” stuff? I didn’t elect you as my spokesperson what I think you meant to say was… “myself and a few disgruntled others”. Happy to help.

          Iron Man 3 rules! Best of the trilogy IMO

          • This is the sound of my hands clapping. However, Mr. Bartlett, I wouldn’t go to the extent of saying IM3 was better than IM1.

            • @bfg666. Thanks! Well that’s the beauty of opinions. I just hate definitive statements that claim opinion as fact. I’m one of those sickos who thinks iron man 2 is better than 1 I’m afraid. A little bit of Sam rockwell and Gary shandling goes a long way.
              But Iron Man 3 is just relentlessly entertaining from start to finish and very funny. In my opinion of course. As a long time reader I also loved the twist, very cleverly played with my expectations and genuinely surprising.

              • I suppose the most worthwhile discussion is…. will there be an iron man 4 announced in the next few years? Whether they say they are done or not it’s unlikely they’d turn their back on a billion dollar franchise.

                • As far as Ben coming back goes, I’d be happy to see him come back in any capacity.

                • There probably will. I remember reading somewhere not long ago that the execs at Marvel would like to do at least 1 or 2 more Iron Man movies.

      • @dazz, i’m 100% with you on this one.

  4. Brilliant. I love this, any chance to see more of Kingsley as that character is a good thing.

  5. It might be a “safe bet” that Sir Ben will be playing the same character, but I wouldn’t bet a large sum on that. There’s no reason they wouldn’t be using him as a completely different character. He’s a Shakespearean actor, he’s got quite a range, y’know.

    • Sure there is. Because if he’s not wearing heavy prosthetics as an alien, he’s Ben Kingsley, and Ben Kingsley is Trevor Slattery.

      Also, Guardians has wrapped and nothing is currently shooting until The Avengers 2 begins next year, meaning his role is an odd cameo in Guardians/Cap or it’s a Marvel One-Shot. He’s not been cast as a new character in new project.

  6. That was a lame twist of the screw. The director lost his way when he tried to be serious and then ended many of the scenes with a joke or funny scene. Even when Pepper Pots seemingly dies, you as part of the audience get to feel the pain of Tony Stark but then the Director killed the scene with the IM armour falling apart.

  7. Maybe he’s doing a voice role for another character? Maybe Thanos is GoTG?

  8. if there is a double deception playing out and it turns out that Trevor Slattery was just THE invented character so that the Mandarin could escape, then I’m all eyes and ears to Marvel. Even so, Ironman 3 is still a disappointment after that anti-climactic twist.

    • The twist is what made IM3 brilliant to me. Without it it’s just a fairly good superhero flick.

  9. Well, it might be intriguing to think of Kingsley pulling the ultimate “okie-doke” and truly being the real big evil Mandarin, but….no, no…I think they blew it too bad in #3. Just bring in a Chinese Fu-Manchu-looking guy, the Hell with the Chinese Government’s sensibilities, and make him like a true Mandarin villain, flying around versus Iron man, magic rings a-zapping (or science, or alien tech, or Crackerjack decoder power, or on-loan from Green Lantern, or whatever! Just give us a true powerful super villain!)

  10. Mandarin Pre-Twist – Menacing, terrifying, Ben Kingsley gave a magnificent performance
    Mandarin Post-Twist – shocking, funny, witty, Ben Kingsley gave a magnificent performance

    I don’t see why they shouldn’t bring him back.

  11. I really tired of these sites having such a limited view of box office success. IM3 is NOT the 5th highest grossing movie all time. I mean it is, but it isn’t. If you want to put any credit in that don’t be upset when a movie 20 years from now makes more and is considered a flop. It’s called inflation people. If you haven’t been paying attention to economics, it’s been going through the roof! Soon there will be a 2 billion dollar movie, doesn’t mean these movies are doing better than past movies, it means EVERYTHING IS MORE EXPENSIVE!!! Example: IM3 is 5th highest grossing all time based on just the dollar amount, it is number 101 when adjusted for inflation. NO COMIC BOOK MOVIE IS EVEN IN THE TOP TEN!!! Avengers is the highest at number 27 followed closely by the Dark Knight at

    • Dragonarcher, you just failed massively. Surely by accident. Look at the link carefully, spot your mistake and apologise to these good people.

  12. Ps. Probably my last Screen Rant post. This new format SUCKS!!!

  13. If this is a plan to redeem The Mandarin and IM3, I’m all for it because IM3, IMHO, is the worst Marvel movie I ever watched. Yes, worse than Dare Devil and Ghost Rider.

    • You’re just letting your pissed off inner fanboy talk. By the way, Daredevil and Ghost Rider weren’t Marvel movies.

      • He means in general

  14. Remember. The only people who were in on the false front was killian and his rigjt hand man and few od tje guards thay were killed. Wvwryone else truly thought he was the mandarin. He could take up tje mantle again but for real this time.