Robert Downey Jr.: Scarlett Johansson Should Rest, Marvel Need To Take ‘Hulk’ Franchise More Seriously

Robert Downey Jr. is Marvel’s Queen Bee. And why shouldn’t he be? His turn as Iron Man in Jon Favreau’s 2008 blockbuster helped to turn the studio into a legitimate commodity, and since then, he has reprised the role in three other films, Iron Man 2, The Avengers and Iron Man 3, each of which have been bona-fide successes.

So when he talks about Marvel’s future slate of projects you sure better listen – and he’s been doing just that over the last few days, after he spoke to USA Today about his thoughts on the studio’s potential franchises.

During this chat Downey Jr, who is currently at the Toronto Film Festival ahead of the premiere of his courtroom drama, The Judge, was asked why Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow still hasn’t got her own solo movie yet.

But rather than insisting that the beloved actress should be banging on Kevin Feige’s door insisting that she gets her own effort, Downey Jr. was more realistic and declared: “Doesn’t Scarlett deserve a break?” He makes a good point. After all, Johanssson is on the brink of becoming a mother for the first time and having just concluded work on Avengers: Age Of Ultron it would make sense that she might want to spend some time with her newborn.

But it’s clear that Downey has a lot of time for all of Marvel’s female contingent: “I think that the interesting thing particularly after Guardians with Zoe (Saldana), even from the first Iron Man where Pepper was kind of this really – to me the Iron Man franchise would never have taken off without (Gwyneth) Paltrow. There’s something about her that grounded the story. She’s not your typical lady in a superhero movie, and then by Iron Man 3 she’s swallowing serums and putting on suits and kicking (butt) and all that stuff.”

Downey believes that if Marvel does go ahead with a Black Widow movie though it will be a success, proclaiming, “It just seems like whatever Scarlett does people want to go see it.”

Meanwhile, the preposterously charismatic thespian not only feels that Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye should get his own movie, but he’s also revealed that he wants Marvel to start talking “even more seriously about a Hulk franchise.” He notes “Ruffalo is pumped” throughout Age Of Ultron, declaring that his co-star “does great (work),” but Downey is also very aware that getting a Hulk franchise right is incredibly tough. Just ask Ed Norton and Eric Bana.

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