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

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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