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Favreau talks IRON MAN 2, AVENGERS and more

Director says he's involved with other Marvel movies

By Rob M. Worley     October 29, 2008
Source: Ain't it Cool


Robert Downey Jr. and director Jon Favreau on the set of IRON MAN(2008).
© Paramount Pictures

Ain't it Cool sits down for an exclusive chat with Marvel's "it" boy Jon Favreau. The director, who is in development on 'Iron Man 2' and just signed on as an executive producer for 'The Avengers' talks at length about both movies and working in a universe of storytelling, something that's unique to Marvel's current wave of movies.

Favreau said that screenwriter Justin Theroux ('Tropic Thunder') is close to finishing the first draft of the screenplay.

"We’re boarding and been creating animatics for the action sequences. We’re starting to do some location scouting and designing some sets and figuring out how much of it we want to… you know, what techniques we’re going to use."

The director also revealed that 'Samurai Jack' and 'Clone Wars' animator Genndy Tartakovsky is involved with the story boarding process. "I really dig his sense of humor and his sense of rhythm, and the way that he acknowledges the same cinematic masters that I really love the work of, like Kurosawa and Leone. And he finds a way to pastiche it without ever undermining the stakes or the reality of the tension that’s created in his action sequences."

Fravreau says he's looking to successful sequels, like 'Empire Strikes Back' and 'The Wrath of Kahn' for inspiration on how to make an 'Iron Man 2' that exceeds the first. Most important is to move the chracter forward. To some degree that involves delving into Tony Stark's alcoholism.

" We’re definitely going to use alcohol...if you look at twelve step programs, that are probably the most effective way of dealing with an addiction, you’ll see that they spend very little time dealing with the actual thing you’re addicted to: substance. Most of the steps become about dealing with your spiritual health and delving deeper into what’s underneath the addiction," Favreau said.

"And I think in that respect it’s very telling as to what… it’s a matter of discovering what Tony Stark’s issues are that he’s dealing with that’s causing him to drink, causing him to womanize, causing him to escape and run in whatever way he does. And that’s what’s compelling especially when you have a guy like Robert, who can really handle this kind of a storyline. Of course you don’t want to overwhelm the film. I want to maintain the tone we had with the first one, for the most part. Nolan has cornered the market on that tone and does it well. It’s not what I do well or what I want to see in IRON MAN. "

A challenge unique to working with Marvel characters is dealing with overlap between a slate of films that are all designed to work together: 'Iron Man 2', 'Thor', 'Captain America' and 'The Avengers'. One of the most exciiting things about 'Iron Man' was the inclusion of elements like S.H.I.E.L.D. as well as Captain America's shield in a background scene.

"So, we were really paying attention, of course now it becomes more and more difficult because we’re weaving… it has to culminate in the AVENGERS. Which, although I won’t be directing it, I’ll be involved with it as an executive producer and I would feel really disappointed if what good will we’ve curried from IRON MAN 1 and hopefully 2, is not lived up to in the AVENGERS."

To that end, Favreau is an executive producer on 'Avengers', but it also appears he'll have some form of consultation on the other movies as well.

"...I’m going to get a little more involved now with what goes on with the other movies. I’m very excited about Kenneth Branagh, I can’t wait to see his take on THOR and we’re really looking at the Cap stuff, very closely.

"For one because we put the shield in there and Tony’s legacy… Howard Stark’s legacy somehow is related to… there’s some relationship between Tony’s father and what was going on in World War II, in the Marvel Universe, and Shield, so we’re trying to lay some pipe here so that when it all happens it feels somewhat inevitable."

Click through to the complete interview for Favreau's extensive comments on the state of the art of filmmaking, what went right with 'Iron Man' and where he goes from here.

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 10 of 26
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AMiSHPiRATE 10/29/2008 7:36:31 AM

 IM2 is using Tartakovsky for storyboards?  I think I just had a nerdgasm.

Wiseguy 10/29/2008 7:37:50 AM

Damn, I just get giddy after readingt this stuff. I like how Favreau is pretty much going to be involved to some degree with all these films. Hopefully, like he said all the creative teams for all these films will cooperate and share with each other to make the cohesion of all these films seamless. It also helps that all are going to be filmed in that same compound so it'll be a small Marvel town anyway. Cause The Avengers has to be the event movie of the decade.

It sounds to me like they're going to be going for the Crimsom Dynamo for the or one of the bad guys. It was mentioned here how the recent aggression by Russia makes it a perfect current event to employ in the film and Favreau's mention of the Cold War seems to point that way.

Glad he's going to address the alcoholism but won't devote the entire film to it and isn't trying to go for a Dark Knight feel.  All good points as far as I'm concerned. And comparing his goals for 2 to Wrath of Khan and Empire Stikes Back is all good.

monkeyfoot 10/29/2008 8:53:34 AM

All of this news does leave me in a comic book nergasm, too. With Favreau in overall charge of this it gives a consistent flow to all the Marvel projects while letting the individual creators work their stuff.

I love Tartakovsky's cinematic style. It's what made his Clone Wars series superior to the current one IMHO.

Geez, I'm spent  in the afterglow now. I need a smoke.

And get in that kitchen and fix me a sandwich!

AMiSHPiRATE 10/29/2008 9:15:35 AM

 Seriously!  Could you imagine a ten minute Tartakovskized fight scene between Iron Man and Dr. Doom with no dialogue?  

Flint521466 10/29/2008 11:41:47 AM

Reading that story made my dingle tingle;-)  I didn't know Favs had it in him, then I saw Iron Man.  IM2 & The Avengers can't come out soon enough!

BlindJustice 10/29/2008 11:56:32 AM
<P itxtvisited="1">Oh God......anybody got a towel I can borrow.</P><BR itxtvisited="1" /> <P itxtvisited="1">If they bring Branagh on as producer as well as whomever does Cap and get one or even all of them to collaberate as director under the watchful eye of a central director the feel of each character would remain.</P> Or would that constitue too many cooks?
chirop1 10/29/2008 12:33:56 PM

The comments about Howard Stark got me thinking... Will we see him in the Captain America film?

silversurfer 10/29/2008 1:19:13 PM

This all bodes very well for Marvel....they're really doing everything they can to raise the bar on all of these projects! 

st8fromvegas 10/29/2008 3:53:46 PM

 

BRING IT ON,THE NEXT 2 OR 3 YEARS IN COMIC MOVIES ARE GOING TO BE GREAT!!!!!

almostunbiased 10/29/2008 4:56:13 PM

I know I'm starting to sound like a broken record, but I can wait to see what Thor will look like.  In fact I hope I never do.  Drop him.

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