by Silas Lesnick
Dec 14th, 2010
Jon Favreau will not be returning to the Marvel Universe for a third Iron Man film, Vulture reports.
The article suggests that the choice was made at the director's discretion and that he informed Marvel Studios of his decision this morning. Though Favreau's reasoning is purely speculatory at this stage, it is likely that the director simply wishes to pursue other creative ventures. With the upcoming Cowboys & Aliens hitting next summer and The Magic Kingdom in the early planning stages, Favreau should remain suitably busy for the time being.
UPDATE: It's been confirmed that Favreau is not returning for the third movie.
In baseball, the "Iron Man" record is held by Cal Ripken, Jr. at 2,632 consecutive games. Though the Iron Man film record is currently held by director Jon Favreau, it looks like the number to beat is going to hold at something a little bit smaller.
Vulture broke the news just hours ago and it has since been confirmed by SHH: Favreau told Marvel Studios this morning that he will not be returning for a third film.
Does that mean it's still too soon to start speculating on who should take over for Iron Man 3? Of course not, this is the internet! Here's SuperHeroHype and CraveOnline's top five choices for a new Iron Man director:
5. Gore Verbinski
No stranger to the House of Mouse, Verbinski delivered one of the studio's biggest successes with the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. Likewise, he's got a similar pedigree to Favreau, countering the smart kiddie fare of Elf and Zathura with Mouse Hunt and the upcoming Rango. Probably Disney's most bankable option, Marvel Studios is meanwhile famous for lowballing its directors (which almost caused Favreau to walk away from Iron Man 2) and that's probably not something you pull with Verbinksi's CV.
4. Andrew Stanton
Another choice with the Disney seal of approval, Stanton's WALL-E mixed CGI metal with drama like nobody's business. Currently hard at work on Disney's John Carter of Mars (which was also once a Marvel comic book series), Stanton is theoretically set by now for live action blockbuster filmmaking and has the technical know-how to deliver something FX heavy that doesn't sacrifice any humanity.
3. Shane Black
Black revitalized Robert Downey Jr's career for a lot of fans with Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang (even if the film failed to make a smash at the box office). What's more, Black consulted on the script for the first Iron Man film and was the one who suggested Downey for the role. An expert at capturing the wry wit that makes Downey's Tony Stark so memorable, Black's downfall as a selection comes in having only the one underperforming directing credit to his name. Still, Black is a pretty accomplished writer and that's arguably what got Joss Whedon aboard The Avengers.
2. Duncan Jones
With the critical acclaim of Moon and the ability to weave a stylish sci-fi narrative, Jones is a shoe-in candidate for some studio to take a big-budget risk on. His name was tossed around as part of the Superman reboot shortlist and he's a self-professed comic book fan with a tentative link to Iron Man already through Sam Rockwell. Depending on how quickly a choice has to be made, it makes sense to see how Jones' sophmore effort, Source Code, turns out both with critics and at the box office, but right now he's got fanboy cred and is a talent poised for exactly this kind of blockbuster break.
Though he's realistically the most unlikely choice on the list, Verhoeven gets the number one spot for being the guy who directed Robocop (along with a number of other genre masterpieces). Though he's over 70 and hasn't had a film released in nearly five years (and one in English, ten), Verhoeven's Iron Man could be a thing of wonder, getting back to the squeamish grit that Favreau featured in the original. Maybe not the family friendly choice, Verhoeven stands out as an auteur whose track record for heroes in metal suits is bar none.
Last edited by The Nuul on Dec 15th, 2010 at 02:17 AM
...Well, we knew Favreau wouldn't work on the Iron Man films forever. When they seem to have the capactiy to keep going, like a James Bond series (that's the flavour it's captured), we knew eventually it would be another director who would do it. But on the cusp of finally doing the Mandarin...? It's too bad.
Paul Verhoeven?? Are those guys kidding? He's the anti-franchise director.
"Everyone else may be an a**hole, but I'm not!" - Harlan Ellison
I'm sure this means he won't be returning as Happy Hogan, the screen time he got in Iron Man 2 really irked me because he was basically just a goofball in it. Ruined Black Widows' fighting scene, at least for me anyway.
Jesus - weren't the fans all thanking him for delivering such an awesome first film? I think the second one is pretty good, too...Black Widow's fight scene was good for thrills and comedy, thanks to Favreau's struggle with just one gurad while she blasts through the rest of them.
"Everyone else may be an a**hole, but I'm not!" - Harlan Ellison
A fight scene should be done as seriously as possible, considering it was leading up to near to the end of the film and is meant to convey a dangerous, tense situation. It shouldn't be comedic with the 'goofy man trying to impress/protect the hot woman' cliche but failing miserably.
Even the scene at the racetrack with Pepper and Hogan bumbling round in the car with the suitcase suit detracts from the eventual scene, we could have had a lot longer and cooler fight with Whiplash, what we got was disappointing to say the least.
"Iron Man" is one of the best superhero films of all time, and easily one of my favorite movies ever.
"Iron Man 2" was good, but a major step down from the previous movie. Rourke was terrific as the villain, but Stark became more of an ass and there were a lot of plotholes that Favreau almost TOLD you to overlook.
I am crushed Favreau has left the franchise, and I am extremely worried for the sequel.
Frankly most of the guys you've listed are too successful to come into the third film of a franchise like Ironman unless they are just looking for a pay check (and Marvel isn't known for throwing a bunch of zeroes to entice directors). Duncan Jones is a possibility has critical success so he is on the radar of film studios but no box office success. I could see him coming on to direct a comic film for the same reason Nolan and Aronofsky did, because if it is a success the studio will back riskier, "artsier" projects the director actually wants to do.
Favreau's career is riding a high momentum, he has nothing to prove any more (not with Iron Man anyway, what he has to prove is that he can bring the heat with something that isn't Iron Man, which is what he is poised to do with Cowboys and Aliens). It is odd to say but after Iron Man 2 staying on to direct a third Iron Man could only hurt his career at this point. He made the right choice, he needs to cash in all the good will he got from the first Iron Man while he can.
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