Shane Black Explains How He Adapted Warren Ellis’ “Extremis” Storyline into IRON MAN 3; New Poster Released

     March 6, 2013

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I love comic book writer Warren Ellis. His series Transmetropolitan and Planetary are among my all-time favorite comics. However, I found his Iron Man story arc “Extremis” a tad underwhelming, although it did offer up the interesting idea of Tony Stark needing to be completely one with his armor. As far as the book’s plot, it doesn’t easily translate to a blockbuster feature, but Iron Man 3 writer-director Shane Black recently told SFX Magazine that he found a way to make it work. Black talks about using the book as a starting point rather than a straight adaptation. It sounds like he’s found a way to flesh out bits from “Extremis”, and thoughtfully integrate them into the upcoming movie.

Hit the jump for more including a new poster. The film stars Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Rebecca Hall, and Ben Kingsley. Iron Man 3 opens in 3D on May 3rd.

Iron-Man-3-posterHere’s what Black had to say to SFX Magazine:

“In the Extremis comic book, there’s a type of thing that takes over and basically upgrades DNA. Sometimes you die. But if you live through the experience then you come out this changed thing. But the way they do it is the guy that does it is not some man chosen to be the super soldier -he’s just a militia guy. There’s an element of realism to it as well. So what we’ve tried to do is take this very science-fictiony concept of super people, and ground it in the type of people who volunteer for this being not necessarily super villains, but just people who upgrade. I love the idea of a super villain that doesn’t wear a cape, that doesn’t wear a super suit. That goes around dressed as you are right now. As for the science of it, once again we’ve gone back to the comic books, and I think pretty much lifted the Maya Hensen idea, that she met [Tony] long ago and had the germ of an idea, which now has come to fruition full circle, but she’s afraid because it’s gotten out there. And we go from there. I think you’ll be interested in the effect that we generate to demonstrate what Extremis does to a human being. It’s a pretty interesting special effect. But we’ve deliberately stayed away from defining, ‘Oh it’s nanites.’ What we do keep from the comic is the idea that there’s a slot in the brain that seems to have been dormant, but exists in human beings, almost as though it’s waiting for human beings to find a way to fill it. It’s been there forever.”

I also like that there remains the understanding of what Iron Man represents in the Marvel Movie Universe. We’ve seen the cosmic elements, but the Iron Man movies can stay Earthbound even though The Avengers saw Tony Stark briefly traveling to another dimension.

Finally, Marvel has released a new poster for the film [via IMP Awards]:

iron-man-3-poster-gwyneth-paltrow-robert-downey-jr

Click here for all our Iron Man 3 coverage or browse recent coverage below:

Here’s the official synopsis for Iron Man 3:

Marvel’s “Iron Man 3″ pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?

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