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Kevin Feige says Marvel didn't want Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man

Just try and imagine the MCU without the actor as Tony Stark. We'll wait.

iron-man

Who else could possibly have played Iron Man?

Zade Rosenthal

Warning: Possible Marvel Universe spoilers ahead.

It's tough now to imagine any other actor in the role of Tony Stark, aka Iron Man, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But in a Reddit Ask Me Anything question-and-answer session online Wednesday night, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige said he had to fight hard for the casting.

Feige actually answered that question twice.

First, Reddit user JokerFaces2 asked Feige, what his hardest sell to executives was, the one thing "that you fought for most, that others tried to shut down?"

And the second time, Reddit user WhoDey42 just flat-out asked, "What casting did you have to fight the hardest for?"

Downey was the answer both times. Feige said he also had to battle to make Captain America: The First Avenger a World War II period film.

Feige also answered a variety of other questions about the Marvel movies. For some, he kept a little mystery alive. Reddit user GentlemanGearGrinder asked, "Are there any plans to incorporate the Ten Rings from the first Iron Man, or the 'real' Mandarin teased in 'All Hail the King' in the future?"

Feige simply said, "yes." But that sent some readers spiraling, as user Infinity-Gauntlet pointed out in spoiler text that there have been rumors the Mandarin will appear in the upcoming Shang-Chi movie.

Feige also revealed that the late Marvel Comics leader, Stan Lee, did not see Avengers: Endgame before his death in November 2018.

"Stan loved to wait to see the final movie at the premiere, so unfortunately he did not get to see the finished movie," Feige said. "Stan got a download of the full story the day he came and shot his cameo."