Surprises were promised for the final stretch of the Hero Complex Film Festival in Los Angeles on Sunday, and were delivered in the form of Robert Downey Jr. joining the regularly scheduled Jon Favreau Q&A, plus an extended nine-minute Cowboys & Aliens trailer.
Shortly into Favreau’s chat with Los Angeles Times reporter/festival host Geoff Boucher — nestled between screenings of Iron Man and Iron Man 2 — the director/actor feigned calling RDJ to have him field a questions, only for the Iron Man star to show up in person and join the panel. So you’re wondering: Did Downey talk Avengers, which is filming now? Well, yes, though in expectedly vague terms. Downey said that director Joss Whedon is “nailing it,” and shared that he had initial skepticism that a film with several different superheroes would work, but, to his pleasant surprise, it is. “I never could believe it. It’s going to be great.”
Talk even stretched into 2013′s Iron Man 3, which will be directed by Shane Black — who worked with Downey on Kiss Kiss Bang Bang — rather than Favreau. “The most difficult part of Iron Man 3 is going to be negotiating Jon Favreau’s acting deal,” Downey joked. After saying that he’ll only return as Happy Hogan is the character becomes The Freak in the next installment — as he did way back in 1966′s Tales of Suspense #74 — Favreau indicated that he’d still be involved creatively on some level for Iron Man 3, calling it a “conglomerate of efforts” moving forward. The director said that making Iron Man 3 immediately after Avengers will take “ingenuity to make it work,” simply because mainstream audiences may wonder why Iron Man wouldn’t be simply able to call upon his superhero brethren for whatever peril he finds himself in — or as Favreau put it, “They’ve lost their cell phones and can’t get help.”
Favreau discussed how when the Iron Man post-credits scene was being filmed, they didn’t have a clear outline as to where they were going with Avengers and beyond, though obviously they had a much more complete picture during the production of Iron Man 2. Downey riffed on the inconsistencies between his The Incredible Hulk cameo and Iron Man 2: “We’re putting a team together. Even though Nick Fury told me he doesn’t want me to be on the team.”