Iron Man Villains

SciFiWire gives info on the villains for the upcoming Iron Man movie:

Jon Favreau, director of the upcoming Iron Man film, hinted that the villains in the first of a hoped-for film franchise would grow out of the technology that allows playboy industrialist Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) to become Iron Man in the first place.

Fans of the comics know that Iron Man’s nemeses include his onetime friend, Jim Rhodes (played in the movie by Terrence Howard), who uses the Iron Man armor to turn against Stark. Another familiar villain is Stark’s ruthless business rival Obadiah Stane (Jeff Bridges), who develops his own armored suit and becomes Iron Monger.

Favreau’s casting and comments seem to confirm that both characters will figure prominently in the upcoming movie.

“I wanted everything to come out of the technology that Tony Stark developed and watch it grow out from there,” Favreau said in an interview at Comic-Con International in San Diego last weekend. “And then, as you cut the movie together, and you see how it plays, and you learn the personality of the film, then go deeper and deeper.”

Eventually, Favreau would like to deploy other villains from the Iron Man comic universe.

“The big villain’s the Mandarin, but the Mandarin is not the type of villain where, right off the bat, you could watch them squaring off,” Favreau said. “You can’t stay true to the books … without putting off the mainstream audience. … As he’s depicted in the books, I don’t know that that depiction would work nowadays.” (The Mandarin has been depicted as a stereotypical Asian villain, a la Fu Manchu, who fights with energy blasts that shoot out of his many rings.)

In addition, Favreau reasoned, “You can’t have Sauron be the first person that Frodo meets up with. … You have to lay enough down in the storyline so, as the story unfolds, you get there, but you also have to delve into the rogues’ gallery and see.” Iron Man is slated for release on May 2, 2008.

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