Not sure what to make of the news, in today’s Hollywood Reporter, that Don Cheadle will be replacing Terrence Howard in Iron Man 2. The article hints that Howard wanted too much money for the sequel, which will see his character, sidekick Jim Rhodes, playing a bigger role, perhaps fulfilling his comic-book destiny as Marvel hero War Machine. But the absence of a deal with Howard also allowed Marvel to “take the role in another direction” by approaching Cheadle, the Reporter says.

What does that mean? Marvel’s not talking about acting talent here; Crash costars Howard and Cheadle are both top-notch, Oscar-nominated actors. But Howard has an intense, leading-man charisma, while Cheadle is a chameleonic actor who seems to vanish into his roles. Some Iron Man viewers found Howard odd and out of place in the film; others cheered him on, especially when he looked at that suit of armor and said, “Next time.” What does the fact that “next time” now belongs to Cheadle mean for the Rhodes character and his prominence in the sequel? Will fans prefer Cheadle to Howard, or will they resent any change in the first film’s winning formula? Weigh in below, PopWatchers.

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addCredit(“Cheadle: Michael Caulfield/Getty Images”)