Drew Pearce
Shane Black and Drew Pearce underestimated the Iron Man 3 twist reaction
When Iron Man 3 was released last May it created a divide in the Marvel fanbase due to the film’s massive twist. Some movie-goers, like myself, absolutely loved the unexpected reveal that "The Mandarin" was just a drugged up British actor named Trevor Slattery, but others were upset that the movie’s version of the character wasn’t exactly what had been in the comics. It was an interesting controversy that presented an interesting subject for debate – do comic book movies have to be exactly like the comics they’re based on? – but perhaps the weirdest thing about the whole situation is that co-writers Pearce and Shane Black didn’t anticipate it at all.

"I think both Shane and I were a bit naive about how people would react to the Mandarin," Pearce told me when I asked about his reaction to the controversy now that the dust has settled. "We were more worried about whether creatively we could pull that twist off on screen than we were about the reaction of people obsessed with the authenticity of a character in regards to the cannon. When that happened I was surprised, but I was also really pleased with and proud of the fact that the Trevor reveal was playing really hard in theaters. We got around and saw audiences embracing it, but also that it was the vessel through which we smuggled a little political satire."

By continuing Trevor’s arc in All Hail The King we learn more about the character’s back-story and it adds a very interesting layer to everything we’ve seen in the Iron Man movies thus far. But don’t start thinking that the short is some kind of creative back peddling.


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