Robert Downey Jr. Interview: Iron Man 2's Theme
Posted 05.05.10 by BrentJS
In the first Iron Man movie, director Jon Favreau delivered a classic "hero's journey" story with the self-centered military-industrial capitalist billionaire Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), when faced with his own mortality and the consequences of his company's actions, transforming into a globablly minded, altruistic force for good. In a recent interview with MTV, Downey, Jr. explained how
the theme of Iron Man 2, which opens this week, has grown to encompass more than just Stark, the man, but the Stark name and its place in the past, present, and future of the "shared universe" that Marvel Studios is crafting.
The theme was legacy — and there's a double legacy. There's the legacy [Tony's] fondly attempting to continue. There's the legacy that's attempting to be subverted by some old foes. And there's the legacy he has no idea about, which of course, the Marvel Universe provides.
In addition to his conflicts with the costumed-villain Whiplash (Mickey Rourke) and a wannabe usurper to his empire (Sam Rockwell) in Iron Man 2, Stark also struggles with his own feelings of inadequacy resulting from a father who casts a long shadow — feelings Downey, Jr. was able to connect with on a personal level.
Any time your dad is revered — I grew up with [people saying], "Hey, that's Bob Downey's kid" — and understandably so. I mean, he's a great innovator and a heck of a filmmaker. In Tony's case, it's really this massive, looming shadow of his dad's almost-posthumous perfection. And it's tough for him to live up to.
Next Showing: Iron Man 2
opens May 7