Jessica Chastain in Talks for a Starring Role in Iron Man 3 (Again)
04.24.12 by BrentJS
After initially being forced to decline a leading role in Iron Man 3 because of other commitments — primarily the as-yet-untitled "hunt for Osama bin Laden" movie from Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker) — it appears as if Jessica Chastain's (The Help) schedule has cleared up enough that she is once again in talks with Marvel Studios for the part. Other actresses who have read for the role of a "sexy scientist every bit as smart" as Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark include Isla Fisher, Diane Kruger, and Gemma Arterton. However, Deadline seems to indicate that the part is Chastain's for the taking.
Though the name of the character Chastain is in talks to play has not been revealed, the recent news that Guy Pearce is in final talks to play geneticist Aldrich Killian makes it seem likely that the "sexy scientist" is Maya Hansen, a central character in the "Extremis" storyline written by Warren Ellis and illustrated by Adi Granov that Marvel mined for both Iron Man and Iron Man 2. A co-worker of Killian's at Futurepharm Corporation and a former lover of Stark's, Hansen is the one who calls in Iron Man when Killian commits suicide after releasing the extremely powerful and dangerous Extremis military nanotechnology serum to a local militia. It's also interesting to note that Maya Hansen and Extremis factor into an Iron Man story arc involving the Mandarin, the power ring-wielding villain that comic book movie fans have long been predicting will be the "big bad" in Iron Man 3.