Flashback: Behind the Scenes of First 'Iron Man'

Flashback: Behind the Scenes of First 'Iron Man'

In 2008, the story of Iron Man was resurrected on the big screen with Robert Downey Jr. as "Tony Stark/Iron Man." Now nearly exactly five years later this May, the third film in the successful superhero film franchise will be released. As the anticipation continues to mount, let's take a trip back to the set of the very first Iron Man.

The character of Iron Man, which originated in Marvel's comic books, had been used in an animated television series and a direct-to-video film and even had a Black Sabbath song named after him, but he had yet to explode into the lives of millions like he would in the exhilarating big-screen franchise.

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On this day in 2007, ET's then-correspondent and current omg!Insider co-host Kevin Frazier headed to Lone Pine, Calif. to get a behind-the-scenes look at the $140 million-budget production of the first Iron Man.

On the set, the film's star, Iron Man himself Robert Downey Jr., talks about what starring in the film means to him at that juncture of his career, providing an interesting retrospective take.

"I...figured if I was ever going to do one of these kinds of movies, this genre, that this would be a good time to do it before I'm too old and can't get in shape, particularly if we wind up doing more than one."

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Downey had just celebrated his 42nd birthday the day before and would have plenty more years of filming Iron Man sequels to look forward to.

While he didn't quantify what age he thought he would be "too old" to star in a superhero action film like Iron Man, Downey was 47 during the production of the upcoming Iron Man 3.

In perfect alignment with his character's playboy lifestyle, Downey also swoons over his co-star Gwyneth Paltrow, who plays his personal assistant, Pepper Potts. That is, with the approval of his wife, though.

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"If you'd have seen her last Friday, it was jaw-dropping," Downey gushes. "And I say that with my wife's full approval. I'm glad we got the kissing scene done already. Now we can just do the rest of the movie without all the anticipation. She was weak-kneed by the end of all those takes."

Watch the full flashback above for all the behind-the-scenes action and an interview with director Jon Favreau.

Iron Man 3
will be in theaters May 3.