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Is there a place for Chinese film star Andy Lau in Iron Man 3 (plus a potential villain spoiler)?

Apr. 25, 2012by: Alejandro Stepenberg

Andy Lau in 2011

Besides shooting in North Carolina, IRON MAN 3 is also scheduled at some point this summer to take a quick jaunt over to China and film on location in Hong Kong and Shanghai.  And Disney's Chinese backers on the project,  Walt Disney China and DMG Entertainment, are chomping at the bit to find someone able to positively represent China's presence and involvement in the story.  And that someone is Andy Lau (HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS, INFERNAL AFFAIRS), who is currently in final negotiations for the role.  

"Word is that Lau (or whoever finally lands the role) would play a good guy - a Chinese scientist who comes to the aid of his old buddy Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) by providing him with some new tech that will help him battle Ben Kingsley's villain, but more importantly Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) and his Extremis biotechnology."

As for that potential villain rumor?

Modern version of The Mandarin

The Mandarin as he appears on the cover of Invincible Iron Man #511

The original source which broke Lau's involvement also had this bit of interesting elaboration to add (which they claim came from an inside source on the project): "Andy Lau’s character will be an OLD FRIEND OF TONY STARK’S that represents China’s technology sector – and will use China’s armored heroes to HELP Iron Man defeat 'The Mandarin' who is seen as a terrorist against both the US and China."

So could "The Mandarin" be something like a codename used to confuse Western intelligence agencies, wherein the Ben Kingsley's villain sells himself as being of Chinese origin but is in actuality just trying to sow discontent and destruction? Meaning that "The Mandarin" is indeed the villain after all, just not in the way we know him?

Ben Kingsley in PoP: SoT

Extra Tidbit: Lau began a singing career in 1988 that continues to this day. By 2000 he had already won over 292 awards for his singing career. And he's awesome at calligraphy and a fantastic actor. Dude is just all kinds of talented.
Source: Neon Punchtwitch

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1:40PM on 04/27/2012

WHAT THE FUCK...

did i just read? why try to rip off the batman movies? Leave "The Mandarin" chinese, and grab Psylocke asap to be Lady Mandarin asap.
did i just read? why try to rip off the batman movies? Leave "The Mandarin" chinese, and grab Psylocke asap to be Lady Mandarin asap.
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+3
4:35PM on 04/25/2012
I'm at a dilemma, Lau is my favorite Hong Kong actor. Infernal Affairs was much better than The Departed because of him. I want him to be in this but I know he would just be used for a couple of brief lines. If that is the case, I would rather he not be in it.
I'm at a dilemma, Lau is my favorite Hong Kong actor. Infernal Affairs was much better than The Departed because of him. I want him to be in this but I know he would just be used for a couple of brief lines. If that is the case, I would rather he not be in it.
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12:25PM on 04/25/2012
It definitely would be cool to see Andy Lau have a role in a big Hollywood movie. I just hope Iron Man 3, which is produced in co-operation with a Chinese production house, doesn't try to pander to Mainland audiences too much. That's a problem the plagued the Karate Kid remake a little bit.
It definitely would be cool to see Andy Lau have a role in a big Hollywood movie. I just hope Iron Man 3, which is produced in co-operation with a Chinese production house, doesn't try to pander to Mainland audiences too much. That's a problem the plagued the Karate Kid remake a little bit.
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+4
12:11PM on 04/25/2012
Oh, hell yes, please let this happen!
Oh, hell yes, please let this happen!
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11:14AM on 04/25/2012
Wow. This pretty much comes out of a left field. Andy Lau is a versatile actor. I hope he gets more than a supporting role even though his role is "Supporting Role".
Wow. This pretty much comes out of a left field. Andy Lau is a versatile actor. I hope he gets more than a supporting role even though his role is "Supporting Role".
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+11
11:03AM on 04/25/2012
Let's hope we get "Sexy Beast" Ben Kingsley and not "Prince of Persia" Ben Kingsley...
Let's hope we get "Sexy Beast" Ben Kingsley and not "Prince of Persia" Ben Kingsley...
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10:23AM on 04/25/2012
Lets just pause for a second and marvel at all the phenomenal actors that have been drawn to the Iron Man franchise over the years. RDJ, Gwyneth Paltrow, Terence Howard, Jeff Bridges, Samuel L. Jackson, Don Cheadle, Sam Rockwell, ScarJo, Mickey Rourke, Paul Bettany, Ben Kingsley...all of Hollywood (and now maybe Hong Kong) is just chomping at the bit to play these characters and spit this dialog. Cast & Dialog alone carried Iron Man 2 to being perfectly enjoyable from start to finish.
Lets just pause for a second and marvel at all the phenomenal actors that have been drawn to the Iron Man franchise over the years. RDJ, Gwyneth Paltrow, Terence Howard, Jeff Bridges, Samuel L. Jackson, Don Cheadle, Sam Rockwell, ScarJo, Mickey Rourke, Paul Bettany, Ben Kingsley...all of Hollywood (and now maybe Hong Kong) is just chomping at the bit to play these characters and spit this dialog. Cast & Dialog alone carried Iron Man 2 to being perfectly enjoyable from start to finish.
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+4
9:46AM on 04/25/2012

Its possible that that's the case...

Instead of giving us a straightforward adaption of any of the villians, with the exception of Obidiah Stane, they've all been kind of loosely based. Wong-Chu, instead of the individual, was the terrorist group that took Stark captive in the first film. The second, we had a combination of Whiplash and The Crimson Dynamo. It's not out of the realm of possibility that we'd see some kind of new twist on the character "Mandarin", or even a mix between him and another lesser known villain.
Instead of giving us a straightforward adaption of any of the villians, with the exception of Obidiah Stane, they've all been kind of loosely based. Wong-Chu, instead of the individual, was the terrorist group that took Stark captive in the first film. The second, we had a combination of Whiplash and The Crimson Dynamo. It's not out of the realm of possibility that we'd see some kind of new twist on the character "Mandarin", or even a mix between him and another lesser known villain.
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9:26AM on 04/25/2012
If they are using the name Mandarin, I keep thinking about what Raza said in first Iron Man where he compared his organization, The Five Rings, to Ghengis Khan who had taken over almost all of Asia. If The Five Rings turns out to be a terrorist organization with 5 regional leaders trying to take over Asia the name could work.

I looked up the name and even though its used as the traditional Chinese language, it has roots in the Hindi word mantri, which apparently means sage/wiseman. And
If they are using the name Mandarin, I keep thinking about what Raza said in first Iron Man where he compared his organization, The Five Rings, to Ghengis Khan who had taken over almost all of Asia. If The Five Rings turns out to be a terrorist organization with 5 regional leaders trying to take over Asia the name could work.

I looked up the name and even though its used as the traditional Chinese language, it has roots in the Hindi word mantri, which apparently means sage/wiseman. And Kingsley is of Indian descent. I totally overthought that but whatever
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9:38AM on 04/25/2012
No, that's cool! Nice research!
No, that's cool! Nice research!
11:31AM on 04/25/2012
Without wanting to come across as a pedant, wasn't it the Ten Rings - i.e. one for every digit of BOTH hands of the Mandarin. That aside some interesting thoughts dude
Without wanting to come across as a pedant, wasn't it the Ten Rings - i.e. one for every digit of BOTH hands of the Mandarin. That aside some interesting thoughts dude