Was Robert Downey Jr really the best possible choice for Iron Man?
This question sparks serious debate among movie buffs and Marvel Cinematic Universe fans. We might have seen a different dude playing the snarky, flying metal hero in an alternate universe.
Eight different actors were potentially up for the part in the first movie dedicated to this comic book icon, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Paramount Pictures.
The talented Robert Downey Jr was only sometimes the top pick. In fact, years of bad press and a series of arrests for drug and alcohol abuse, plus over-the-top partying, cast a pretty big shadow on his suitability for the role. At one point, his name seemed far from the obvious choice to play Tony Stark.
Marvel’s Casting Carousel
Interestingly, Clive Owen was first in line for Iron Man before Downey Jr. snagged the iconic role. Sam Rockwell was also in the running among the other actors in the mix. The pool of potential Tony Starks was varied and intriguing, showing the uncertainty that hovered around this central figure.
Even big stars like Leonardo DiCaprio and Hugh Jackman were on the list. However, they were likely ruled out because of their already heavy commitments and the need for long-term dedication to the character of Tony Stark, who was set to appear in numerous films within the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The ultimate turning point
However, the guy who tipped the scales in favor of Robert Downey Jr was David Maisel, an American film and Broadway producer. Known for his influence behind other blockbusters like The Incredible Hulk, Thor, and Captain America, Maisel fought tooth and nail to convince the producers to give Downey Jr. a shot, despite his known management issues.
Despite the doubts of many colleagues, Maisel pulled it off, landing Downey Jr. the role.
What do you think about this choice? Did it work out, or would you have preferred to see someone else in flying armor and shooting lasers from his hands?
There are many theories and speculations, but no actual facts or official statements, about the possibility of Iron Man returning after Avengers Endgame and who might take his place.
So, let’s sit back and enjoy our beloved hero, with his ever-cheerful humor and his courage as strong as his armor, played by our dear Robert Downey jr, seeming to claim his role when concluding with exactly the last words, “I AM IRON MAN.”
This is no coincidence!