Even after 23 MCU films and dozens of superheroes, Iron Man will always hold the special position of being the one who started it all in 2008. And the actor who played Tony Stark, Robert Downey Jr, deserves all the credit for establishing the Marvel Cinematic Universe and building it into the behemoth it has become today.
Iron Man has been omnipresent in almost all Marvel films, in real or in reference. No wonder, Robert Downey Jr got to share screen space with most of its mega starcast in MCU’s ten years. The Marvel veteran says his group with the OG Avengers — actors Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo and Jeremy Renner still remains “close-knit.”
In the latest book titled ‘The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’ by Tara Bennett and Paul Terry, Downey Jr’s emotional letter from 2018, was officially revealed. The special tie-in book for the franchise which released last week, had the actor looking back at his journey as Tony Stark aka Iron Man.
He also spoke about Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans, who played Thor and Captain America respectively, saying that the “hale and hearty” results of their involvement meant that the Avengers “seemed inevitable.”
“I hope these films have evoked a dialogue on equality, justice, freedom, embracing diversity, and combating intolerance with the power of partnership, sacrifice, and love. At this point, Tony might say: “You’re welcome.” I’ll balance that with a boundless eternal: “Thank you”,” Robert Downey Jr wrote in the heartfelt 1000-word tribute to the MCU, according to an article in The Direct.
Marvel Studios came into being with the release of Iron Man in 2008. Its three phases, titled the Infinity Saga, culminated with Iron Man’s snap while wearing the Infinity Gauntlet to ensure the defeat of Thanos and bringing half the humanity back.
Avengers: Endgame ended with the death of Iron Man and worldwide tributes from fans for their favourite superhero. RDJ’s “I love you 3000” became the catchphrase too.
In the aforementioned letter, Downey Jr also expressed confidence in the new members of the MCU, who’ll take on the baton forward. MCU is currently at the beginning of its Phase Four.
Read excerpts from Robert Downey Jr’s letter of tribute, according to The Direct.
I distinctly remember she (Gwyneth Paltrow), Favs (Jon Favreau, director), and me sitting in a dilapidated Quonset hut, talking Potts and Stark, when he suddenly swelled up with a wave of emotion . . . joy, relief, faith, and grief all made a showing:
(Me, looking at him)
“What’s up, boss?
(Him, looking at her)
“I just realized this movie’s gonna work.”
Turns out he was right; yet, there were other oxymoronic keys to Iron Man’s unlikely success, namely:
A) Unorthodox efficiency
B) Ceaseless development
And it goes without saying that Jackson’s presence throughout (and portrayal of Fury) have been a connective tissue, our bridge over numerous credibility gaps. Johansson, Cheadle, Renner, Ruffalo, Hemsworth, Evans, Olsen, and I remain close-knit. (Yes, there’s talk of a group tattoo.)
We are more than impressed with Pratt, Lilly, Rudd, Cumberbatch, now Boseman, not to mention Larson, whom we all agree will be a fitting and capable advance guard for the second decade of shenanigans. I would loathe not to include Holland (therefore Watts) in the mix, having somehow re-relaunched the most recognizable of all Marvel creations.
‘ll extend to Reynolds as well (to further prove I’m not distributor-specific regarding fellowship). While I have your car, I’ll reach way back to day one, and express gratitude to Howard (our original Rhode)’), who was integral to my being cast. Almost lastly, every nemesis that Tony has encountered thus far deserves an honorable mention, so kudos to Bridges, Rourke, Kingsley, Pearce, Hiddleston, Spader, and, finally, Brolin.
The Who, is YOU .. . If you made it to the “end credits” of this anniversary edition, you’re likely a fan, so there’s your Easter egg, darlings . . . a mirror! Folks who respond to mythological storytelling arc positively the propellant of all things Marvel. It’s always been that way, no supply required without demand. Ever since Comic Con 2007, it’s been apparent that the audience (no offense, THX) was no longer just listening. For ten years, YOU have copiloted the narrative.
Finally, I hope these films have evoked a dialogue on equality, justice, freedom, embracing diversity, and combating intolerance with the power of partnership, sacrifice, and love.
At this point, Tony might say: “You’re welcome.” I’ll balance that with a boundless eternal: “Thank you.”