Jon Favreau Leaves Marvel Fold, Not Directing 'Iron Man 3'
The Globes are SO yesterday. The big news is that Jon Favreau is not going to direct Iron Man 3 for Marvel Studios.
The move isn’t that much of a surprise but is no less shocking.
Favreau’s negotiations to direct Iron Man 2 was a tough slog, and while he got $10 million for the gig, plus backend, it came close to not happening. When he did Cowboys and Aliens, his ask went up. Marvel, known for keeping their costs as low as possible, wasn’t likely to pay him. He also took the job to develop and direct a big tentpole for Disney based on their theme parks called Magic Kingdom.
Favreau alluded to strains with his relationship in a recent MTV News interview, where he said “In theory, Iron Man 3 is going to be a sequel or continuation of Thor, Hulk, Captain America and Avengers. That whole world … I have no idea what it is. I don’t think they do either, from conversations I’ve had with those guys.”
Vulture and other outlets reported the split, which was just confirmed by Favreau in a tweet.: “It's true, I'm directing Magic Kingdom, not Iron Man 3. I've had a great run with Marvel and wish them the best.”
The reason the move is so shocking is really due to how Marvel presents itself. Since the beginning of the company, Marvel has fostered this image of a familial and collegial atmosphere. Stan Lee has nicknames for himself and his writers and artists, like Stan “The Man” Lee and Jack “King” Kirby, and through his editorials he pushed the idea of the Mighty Marvel Bullpen, a teeming place of artists working together to tell tall tales of astonishment and amazement.
Marvel Studios continues that tradition, exemplifying it best at its Comic-Con presentations. When you’re part of a Marvel panel, you’re part of the team, the family, an assembly of avenging filmmakers working together to create a universe of movies never before tried in the history of cinema. You’re taking on naysayers, you’re smiling in the face of critics, and everyone wishes they were in your place.
But behind that white picket fence, things are not always rosy. The cracks between Lee and Kirby, and Lee and Steve Ditko, were real. They were just not known at the time because no one was reporting tidbits every minute of every day. Those tensions, when they surface, are harder to hide now.
Favreau was part of Marvel and a part of Iron Man. He, along with Terrence Howard, helped convince them to hire Robert Downey Jr. He steered clear of cheesy CGI and went with practical effects, making the first movie standout. He made the Black Widow one of the coolest things in Iron Man 2.
So his departure hurts and shocks because it’s like a member of the family leaving.