Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS for Spider-Man: Far From Home ahead.
Mysterio's (Jake Gyllenhaal ) pivotal speech in Spider-Man: Far From Home is inspired by Robert Downey Jr. The latest Marvel Studios blockbuster teases what's next in the Marvel Cinematic Universe after Avengers: Endgame. And they chose to follow-up an impactful villain such as Thanos (Josh Brolin) with another great one, albeit in a small scale in Quentin Beck.
Introduced as a hero from another universe who ended up in Peter Parker's (Tom Holland) Earth through an inter-dimensional portal that opened up after Thanos' snap in Avengers: Infinity War, Mysterio teamed up with Spider-Man to fight the so-called Elementals. But as comic book readers know, Beck's modus has always been rooted on deception, leading to a plot twist that was effectively revealed in arguably one of the most creative expository scenes in the MCU. After he got the key Tony Stark piece of technology from Peter, Mysterio got in an impassioned monologue revealing that everything was a ploy to lure the young hero to trust him. Gyllenhaal was so great in the scene and it turns out, it was somehow inspired by Downey.
During an interview with Yahoo Entertainment, host Kevin Polowy asked Gyllenhaal about director Jon Watts and Holland's comments that Beck's monologue in Far From Home was based on Downey. The actor was hesitant to delve into the scene given that it's a major reveal in the movie, so he tried to skirt around it, but he eventually said that "there were a few moments that were conscious" of him mining "inspirations" from Downey. And since both actors have worked with each other in David Fincher's Zodiac, it was relatively easy for Gyllenhaal to channel his former co-star.
This was a subtle reference to the MCU's inaugural actor, but Far From Home is peppered with tributes to the character Downey played in the franchise. Obviously, the fact that his death played an integral part in the premise of the movie, but the movie took it a notch further with visuals of Iron Man. There were several murals in ever city that Peter and his friends travelled to that were dedicated to the fallen hero. Aside from that, Peter creating his own suit at the back of the Stark Jet is a direct reference to Tony tinkering on his technology.
Gyllenhaal's delivery of Mysterio's big speech indeed have some moments reminiscent of Downey. But Mysterio mimicking the genius, billionaire character instead was an important element of the narrative since Peter is still grieving over Stark's death, making it much easier to manipulate the young hero. In the bigger scale of things, Beck's plan was also to become an Avenger-type of hero, and given Stark's sacrifice in Endgame, Beck's essentially aspiring to become the next Iron Man. The interesting part about this is that Downey has been synonymous to Tony Stark that it's difficult to separate the two. So while Mysterio was trying to give off the same vibe as Stark in Spider-Man: Far From Home, particularly regarding his relationship with Peter, some could argue that in some regard, he's also just emulating Downey.
Source: Yahoo Entertainment