Part of the reason for the success of Iron Man might be due to director Jon Favreau’s openness with fans of the film. He was a frequent visitor to the Iron Man Movie Group on MySpace, spending time communicating with fans and answering their questions. These conversation helped ease fans’ fears regarding the flick. But his latest foray into the world of MySpace raised a fair share of fears.
Yesterday, Favreau opened a new topic on the group message boards to answer fan questions. This line of question raised an interesting discussion about the future of the Iron Man franchise.
In response to a question about his contract negotiations, Favreau posted this message:
It’s been five weeks since the one and only phone call my reps have gotten from Marvel. I know their hands are full with the Hulk and I’m sure they will get into it shortly, as they tell me they intend to. I ran into the Marvel guys at the Hulk premiere and everyone sounded eager to get to work on IM2.
I am concerned, however, about the announced release date of April 2010. Neither Robert nor I were consulted about this and we are both concerned about how realistic the date is in light of the fact that we have no script, story or even writers hired yet. This genre of movie is best when it is done thoughtfully and with plenty of preparation. It might be better to follow the BB/DK, X/X2 three year release pattern than to scramble for a date. It is difficult because there are no Marvel 09 releases and they need product, but I also think we owe it to the fans to have a great version of IM2 and, at this point, we would have less time to make it than the first one.
Is the honeymoon over? Or is this just a casual conversation between Favreau and his fans?
I wouldn’t say I was “concerned” by the 2010 release date for Iron Man 2. More like puzzled. Two years is a short time to go from script to screen on a CGI heavy film, especially when the script has not even been started yet. And the Iron Man sequel seems like a speed bump on the fast lane to the Avengers film anyway. Could this be Marvel’s inexperience running a studio showing through?
Of course, Favreau’s post could be interpreted as a form of contract negotiations. It could be read as he was saying “Gosh, two years is an awful short time to make a movie. I’d have to work hard just to pull it off. But I would work even harder if I had more money. Oh, and if you are thinking of replacing me, Robert Downey, Jr. is going, too.”
Is this what Favreau is getting at? Perhaps but I really don’t think so. But, regardless, if Marvel really wants an Iron Man film in theaters in 2010, they need to get the team together fast. And what made Iron Man such a success was Jon Favreau’s direction and especially Robert Downey, Jr’s acting. I wouldn’t risk sacrificing those two just to meet a quasi-unrealistic release date.