While speculation surrounding which villain Ben Kingsley will be playing in Iron Man 3 has yet to be cleared, the cast of the film continues to grow – today adding Prometheus and Lockout star, Guy Pearce.

According to Variety, Pearce will play the geneticist Aldrich Killian. For those who aren’t familiar with Iron Man lore, Killian and Maya Hansen (Tony Stark’s old friend) create the Extremis technology, which was a tool designed for the military that allowed nanotechnology to bond to a human. But when the military pulled the funding for the project, Killian decides to test Extremis out in a much more nefarious way.

We can only speculate that Pearce and Kingsley’s characters’ paths will cross, thus creating a real problem for our hero Tony Stark. Because filming will take place in China, there are some that believe that the Mandarin will be the villain in the movie, Kingsley will play him (despite Marvel’s denial that he will) and play part in the spread of the nanotech virus.

All of this seems to confirm that the central plot of Iron Man 3 will indeed borrow elements of Warren Ellis’ “Extremis“. In later Iron Man comics The Mandarin released the Extremis on the general population, so it seems to make sense that he could be the villain in the movie. But that is all pure speculation at the moment. Director and screenwriter Shane Black penned the script to have a real-world take on the heavy-metal hero.

Principle photography is set to begin next month; so we can expect a couple more names being added to the cast. Whether or not we will be seeing  Maya Hansen’s character as part of the Iron Man 3 story remains to be seen, but seeing as she was an intricate part of creating Extremis technology, we could be hearing of a name being cast pretty soon.

Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle and Gwyneth Paltrow are all set to reprise their respective roles.

Iron Man 3 is scheduled to hit theaters on May 3, 2013.

Source: Variety