Iron Man 2 Interviews from SDCC: Sam Rockwell
Brent Sprecher talks to the cast of Iron Man 2 at the San Diego Comic-Con 2009! In this installment: Sam Rockwell!
With the Hall H applause still ringing in my ears, I proceeded upstairs to a private set of roundtable interviews with the cast of Iron Man 2. Up first, was Sam Rockwell, who plays Justin Hammer, Tony Stark's competitor and, later, his adversary.
When asked about the character of Justin Hammer, Rockwell said:
"He's an arms dealer and he's a Tony Stark wannabe, you know. I think he's awesome. He's great, following in the footsteps of Jeff Bridges and Bill Murray in Kingpin and a few other adversaries.
Apparently the character wasn't fully formed when Rockwell was hired. He said:
"We sort of didn't know where (Justin) was going and we discovered that as we shot the film, which is also kind of exciting. It also takes the pressure off you, because you're like--you know, I got a speech a half-hour before we shot it. I got a speech at lunch time, so I had to learn that and figure that out and use little tricks, you know, but we got it. It's on film, it's on celluloid."
Only minutes before the interview, Rockwell had been on stage in front of more than 6,000 fans for the Iron Man 2 panel. He was somewhat subdued during the panel and did not say very much. When asked if the crowds were intimidating, Rockwell said:
"It's a little intimidating, but seeing the trailer is really wild because we've been working on the film--we just wrapped about a week ago, so it felt like a smaller endeavor to us, and then to see that kind of filmmaking up there is pretty awesome, pretty impressive. So, I'm kind of like, "Wow, this is a big deal."
Rockwell couldn't divulge too much about the plot, but he admitted that his character and Mickey Rourke's character, Whiplash, team up against Iron Man. He said that Tony snubs Justin, which sets him off.
"Whiplash and I--Ivan and I do team up together. I'm sort of a patron of evil, I suppose. Actually, he's a big fan of Tony. Tony doesn't really want to hang out with Justin, so I think that angers Justin."
When asked about the process of developing the character of Justin Hammer, Rockwell said that it was not difficult, even though he was only given bits and pieces of the script to work with. He said:
"It's kind of like the way we worked on Charlie's Angels, with the exception that we had 17 writers for that and we only had one writer, which was Justin Theroux--thank God, you know--but it's a similar process and yet, because (director Jon Favreau) is an actor who comes from improve it's really actor-friendly, this process. So, it's very character driven. We didn't get a full script until like a week before shooting. I would get little pieces here and there. But, I would have conversations about it and I would get the scenes and go to my acting coach--a guy named Terry Knickerbocker--and we would work on the material. Even though the material might change... the homework I had done on it still pays off because it's still the same imaginary circumstances even though (something has) changed. So, it is possible to do preparation for a movie like this, but it's an unconventional way to work."
Finally, I asked Rockwell if he ever tries on the War Machine armor in the movie, since he is the one who develops it for the military. Rockwell smiled and said, "We'll see. We'll see," and then changed the subject. Could the footage of War Machine shown firing his guns in the teaser actually have Justin inside and not James "Rhodey" Rhodes? We'll have to wait and see.
Iron Man 2 opens May 7, 2010.
Click HERE for an interview with Robert "Iron Man" Downey Jr.!
Click HERE for an interview with Scarlett "Black Widow" Johansson!
Click HERE for an interview with Iron Man 2 director Jon Favreau
And, in Astro Boy news:
Click HERE for an interview with Freddie "Astro Boy" Highmore!
Click HERE for an exclusive interview with Kristen "Cora" Bell!
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