Andy Lau to Join "Technological Thriller" Iron Man 3?
04.25.12 by Ryan
Marvel is wasting no time continuing its "Cinematic Universe." The studio will start shooting Iron Man 3 shortly after The Avengers opens in theaters. Plot details have been kept a closely guarded secret, but Marvel president of production Kevin Feige told ABC News last week that the third installment would be quite different from the previous movies.
It's going to be very different, very unique and I think not ascribe to any specific formula that they think they may have pegged us on. It's all in the story. It's where you take Tony Stark on his journey in an unexpected way and have him come out of the Avengers a slightly changed individual, which people will see when they see the movie.
With writer-director Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) taking over the director's chair from Jon Favreau, Iron Man 3 is certainly going to feel different from its predecessors. How, exactly, Black's vision of Tony Stark will differ from Favreau's won't become clear for awhile. One possible hint: During the Disney presentation at CinemaCon, Black called the sequel a "technological thriller," reports SuperHeroHype. That more clearly delineates the sequel from the other Iron Man movies and backs up Black's statement last March that Iron Man will fight "real world villains" in a "Tom Clancy-inspired thriller."
While specific plot details were not given, Black also told the CinemaCon audience that Iron Man 3 is a "crisis movie" set in the world of "international war, arms, and terror" that will "put Tony Stark through the wringer." No villain was named, but Black promised that the big bad will "frighten in today's world."
Ben Kingsley was cast as one of the sequel's villains, with speculation that the actor will play arch-nemesis The Mandarin furthered by the news that Disney is partnering with China-based company DMG to produce Iron Man 3 and that the sequel will contain "Chinese elements" (Mandarin is a Chinese scientist). Another "Chinese element" could be Hong Kong superstar Andy Lau.
According to Neon Punch (via Twitch), Lau is in final negotiations to join the cast, but not as The Mandarin. Instead, Lau will play "an old friend of Tony Stark’s that represents China’s technology sector" and will help Iron Man defeat The Mandarin with some of "China's armored heroes." The report goes on to say that The Mandarin may not be an individual but a group that uses the moniker.
Of course, all of this, including Lau's casting, is unconfirmed at this point. Should it be true, Kingsley could play the head of The Mandarin group, as his character is reportedly going to be involved in the spreading of a nanovirus. That much is likely true, since Iron Man 3 will be based, at least loosely, on the Extremis storyline from the Iron Man comic books — confirmed by Guy Pearce's recent casting as geneticist Aldrich Killian, the man who created the Extremis technology in the comic books.
Iron Man 3 will see the return of Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark, Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts, and Don Cheadle as Lt. James "Rhodey" Rhodes, aka War Machine. It likely won't feature Scarlett Johansson as her Avengers and Iron Man 2 character Natasha Romanoff, aka the Black Widow. The actress told ScreenRant that the Widow won't return for Iron Man 3. Jessica Chastain has also joined the cast, playing a "sexy scientist" that could be a love interest for Tony Stark.