Iron Man sure has changed a lot since his first appearance in Tales of Suspense #39 back in March 1963. Iron Man was an important and popular character in the Marvel Comics universe, but never seen as a real A-list bankable hero to the general public. The character’s guest appearances in comics, animated cartoons in the 60′s and 80′s, and his own series in the 90′s slightly raised the character’s status to a wider audience. It wasn’t until his big-screen break in 2008, however, when the world finally noticed Iron Man.
With Iron Man 3 debuting in the US tonight, here are some fun facts!
The first weekend in May has become a big deal for Marvel movies. Since 2007, this weekend has seen the major release of a Marvel comic book adaptation.
2007 – Spider-Man 3
2008 – Iron Man
2009 – X-Men Origins: Wolverine
2010 – Iron Man 2
2011 – Thor
2012 – Marvel’s The Avengers
And now 2013 – Iron Man 3!
A primary influence on the story of Iron Man 3 comes from Warren Ellis and Adi Granov’s Iron Man story arc “Extremis” from 2005.
Iron Man 3 has already been released internationally, with an opening haul of $195.3 million, besting the previous record holding top grosser, Marvel’s The Avengers ($185.1 million).
The main protagonist of the film, The Mandarin, has been changed from his more fantastical comic book form. The character has been around since Tales of Suspense #50 in 1964. In the comics, he was created as a stereotypical Fu Manchu villain, wielding 10 power rings on his fingers. Seen as a caricature of the yellow scare of the times, to prevent any potentially racist stereotypes, Mandarin has been changed to a more grounded, militaristic terrorist, sans power rings.
One comic book storyline you’ll never see completely adapted to an Iron Man flick; Demon in a Bottle. The arc ran in 1979, which dealt primarily with Tony Stark’s alcoholism. Traces of it have been alluded to in the films, most notably in Iron Man 2 when Tony, while drunk in the Iron Man suit, begins acting out and scaring his party guests.
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