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'Iron Man 2' adds Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson: Even more excited now?

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Johannssonrourke_lThe amount of talent Marvel has assembled for Iron Man 2 is pretty impressive. You have actor/writer Justin Theroux penning the script, multihyphenate Jon Favreau behind the camera, and A-list talent like Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, and Samuel L. Jackson reprising their roles from the stupendously awesome original (with Don Cheadle stepping in for Terrence Howard, to boot). Then, then, you add Sam Rockwell and Mickey Rourke as villains and you have the formula for one hell of a sequel. And let’s be serious: Rourke was born to play a villain in a superhero flick. Just look at that face! It was meant to be.

To me, there seems to be only one weak link: the just-confirmed Scarlett Johansson. Sure, she’s a fine actress given the right role and is guaranteed to look sultry in a skintight leathery costume. But her character, Black Widow, is a Russian spy. That’s right, Russian. The thought of Johansson attempting a Russian accent sends chills down my spine, PopWatchers, and not in a good way. It certainly doesn’t do Johnasson any favors that we’ve been imagining Emily Blunt in the role for quite some time (who had to drop out because of scheduling conflicts). Blunt surely would’ve killed and could have used the profile boost. But, I’ll look at this from a glass-half-full perspective: While Johansson has floundered in big-budget blockbusters (The Spirit or The Island, anyone?) in the past, this plum role is her chance to shine.

Regardless, are you as jazzed for Iron Man 2 as I am? Is Johnasson a good choice to play Black Widow? And can you believe we have to wait until May 7 of 2010 to see it?

addCredit(“Johannsson: Kevin Winter/Getty Images; Rourke: Gennadi Avramenko/Epsilon/Getty Images”)

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