Monday, July 16, 2012

5 Bombshells Dropped at the Marvel Studios Panel

This year, the room went dark mid-sentence of the emcee's speech, and when the lights came back on, RDJ was dancing through the isles in true Tony Stark fashion, complete with a slick grey suit accented by red and gold, naturally. Oh, and most of the dance was spontaneously choreographed to the music, culminating in a finale that revealed he was wearing the glowing Iron Man gloves. He's not just an actor; he's a showman, 'nuff said.

1. It's Officially a Franchise

Marvel knows a good thing (or things) when it has it, which is why it's not far-off to think they'd venture into sequel territory with some of their properties. What's thrilling though is the fact that two of these sequels are primed and ready to shoot, with release dates and everything. Thor: The Dark World is slated for 2013, and Captain America: The Winter Soldier will make its way to theaters on April 14, 2014, and judging by the subtitle, fans will have plenty to look forward too with the introduction another beloved character from the comic universe. Just who will play Bucky, AKA the Winter Soldier, is still under wraps.

2. RDJ Dons the Iron Again, Battles Ben Kingsley and Guy Pearce

Iron Man 3 is only halfway through production, but that didn't stop Robert Downey Jr. from bringing along some of the already completed footage for the 6,500 lucky fans at the panel. In the two and a half minutes, Tony Stark tests out a new self-dressing Iron Man suit, his palatial cliffside mansion gets blown to bits, he nearly drowns while in the suit, Guy Pearce looks menacing as a corporate bad guy, and we get our first glimpse at Ben Kingsley as the Mandarin, Iron Man's newest villain. Pretty cool stuff.

3. The Next Avengers?

It's not only the old staples of Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America set for future box office glory. In fact, an entire team of heroes is getting the cinematic treatment. Guardians of the Galaxy is slated for release in August of 2014. Can this new team of do-gooders repeat what their avenging predecessors achieved? We'll have to wait a couple years to find out.

4. Ant-Man Comes to Life

The first hints of an Ant-Man adaptation came to light at 2006's Comic-Con, but with writer/director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim) taking on other projects, he stalled out on crafting a worthy screenplay. That is, until now. Not only is the ball rolling on production of Ant-Man, but Wright made a surprise appearance at the panel to show the fans a 90-second screen test of the film. While a screen test inherently leaves much to be desired in terms of a finished product, there's no denying Wright's on his way to a really cool movie. The role has yet to be cast, so send your Ant-Man suggestions to Mr. Wright's twitter.

5. Robert Downey Jr. Is Even Cooler than You Think

Marvel Studios Okay, so this one's not really a bombshell. You'd have a hard time finding someone out there who has not been won over by Downey's effortless charisma, quick wit, and contagious enthusiasm. That said, he totally shines at Comic-Con. Like Iron Man, Downey's a hero there, and he knows it. While most celebs enter the massive panel hall by simply walking across the stage modestly, Robert Downey Jr. makes an entrance... sorry, AN ENTRANCE!

Reporting from San Diego — If you were under the impression that the folks at Marvel would take it easy for a while after creating the most successful superhero movie of all time in The Avengers, think again. Between sequels, trilogies, and brand new comic book favorites in production, the next two years are going to be quite busy.

It's no surprise a company that brought the world iconic characters ranging from the X-Men to Iron Man to Captain America considers Comic-Con its second home. As such, the Marvel Comic-Con panel yielded plenty exciting information on what fans can expect in the near future. Robert Downey Jr. and the gang made a grand entrance and brought some exclusive footage, news, and images to Comic-Con, and we're bringing you all the details.

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