Iron Man 2, Robert Downey Jr. | IRON MAN 2 (May 7) Tony Stark's back, and he's got company: The sequel to 2008's $318 million hit includes new characters like a Russian…
Credit: Industrial Light & Magic

STARRING Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Mickey Rourke, Scarlett Johansson
WRITTEN BY Justin Theroux

After 2008’s Iron Man rocket-booted to more than $318 million at the box office, a sequel was a no-brainer. Exactly what that sequel would be about, though, wasn’t. ”After an origin story, some people tend to think that the best part of the character’s world has already been blown and doused,” says Robert Downey Jr., who stars again as billionaire playboy-turned-?superhero Tony Stark. ”I thought, No, that can’t be it. There’s so much left unresolved.”

The character’s comic-book canon didn’t offer a clear way forward, so Team Iron Man came up with a fresh story. Stark is struggling with his newfound fame and running up against two new enemies: a Russian inventor who creates his own deadly suit (Mickey Rourke) and a wealthy weapons manufacturer (Sam Rockwell) who joins forces with him. ”We didn’t want to have just another armored suit for Tony to bounce off, because we’d already done that,” says director Jon Favreau. ”Secret identities are pretty well picked over, so we went the other way: What happens to a guy who’s already bigger-than-life who then becomes exponentially more famous? That was our starting point.”

Iron Man 2
  • Movie
  • 125 minutes