After weeks of speculation, it appears that Shane Black has officially signed on to direct Iron Man 3, according to Deadline. Black is no stranger to the movie’s star, Robert Downey Jr., after working with him in the 2005 cult favorite action-comedy Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang. Downey’s performance in Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang was seen by many as the role that reignited his fledgling career. This made Black an obvious choice for Marvel and Downey, who had a major say when it came to potential directors.
Black is perhaps best known for writing the scripts to Lethal Weapon 1 & 2 and the Last Boy Scout. As of now, Deadline is reporting that it isn’t clear whether or not Black will be writing the script for Iron Man 3.
This is going to be a difficult gig for Black, as there isn’t a proven track record of new directors entering an already established franchise and finding success. Just take a look at Joel Schumacher and Brett Ratner on Batman and X-Men, respectively. Jon Favreau, director of the first two Iron Man films, floored audiences with his keen eye for action, humor and emotion and it will be interesting to see if Black can recreate the improvisational atmosphere of those films. Meanwhile, Iron Man’s next film appearance will be in Joss Whedon’s Avengers, due in theaters May 4, 2012.