We all remember our first love. For fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that honor usually belongs to Robert Downey Jr. and the original Iron Man movie from 2008. Ushering in the new era of comic book movies, the Iron Man franchise has anchored the MCU for the better part of a decade, showcasing Tony Stark’s wit and intelligence over three standalone movies and two Avengers films. The character will return in Captain America: Civil War, but, according to Robert Downey Jr., he considers the upcoming superhero smack down to be his own personal Iron Man 4.

Speaking with USA Today (via EW), Robert Downey Jr. admitted that while there may not necessarily be another Iron Man on the horizon, he considers Captain America: Civil War to be his own Iron Man 4:
In a way it’s Cap 3 but for me it’s like my little Iron Man 4. And then it’s back to the thing we all recognize. Everything pulls over to the side of the road when the thunder of an Avengers thing comes through because that’s how it is until it changes. If it changes.

The very first Iron Man leaned heavily upon the idea that Tony Stark would no longer allow himself to be part of a system that didn’t hold itself accountable for its actions. Every single Iron Man movie has built upon this idea in some form or another, and his experiences in each Avengers movie have bolstered his belief that drastic measures must be taken.

Captain America: Civil War will see the character’s arc come full circle as he forms a faction that he believes will hold super powered beings accountable for the destruction they cause. Even if another Iron Man movie never happens, Civil War will take the character on enough of a journey that audiences will most likely appreciate his arc without an entire movie dedicated to him.

Of course, all of this could very well change at some point. Although Robert Downey Jr. claims that there’s no Iron Man 4 in store, Marvel Studios could always change their mind if they decide they want it, and Downey Jr. remains in the physical shape to take on the role.

Just look at the recent trailer for Captain America: Civil War below; there’s no shortage of Iron Man in sight.

Even without another standalone Iron Man movie, Tony Stark will still play an integral role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Based off of what we will see in Captain America: Civil War, we can’t exactly complain. Quality remains infinitely more important than quantity when it comes to the usage of a beloved character, and Marvel seems to have an acute understanding of that concept. Captain America: Civil War will blast its way into theaters on May 6.

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