Faran Tahir Recalls Changing Marvel's Negative Depiction of Muslims In IRON MAN

With no word on whether he'll appear in Iron Man 3, the actor behind billionaire Tony Stark's earliest antagonist, Raza, Faran Tahir recalls having the Iron Man script changed. Check it out!

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By DCMarvelFreshman - 1/7/2013
Speaking before an audience at The Second Floor (T2F), according to The Express Tribune, Pakistani-American actor Faran Tahir recently mused about his breakout role in the first venture of Marvel Studios, Iron Man. Revealing as to why he considers the 2008 blockbuster his greatest Hollywood achievement, Tahir recalls having a say about the film's depiction of the bad guys.

According to the actor, Iron Man originally portrayed Raza and his Ten Rings soldiers of fortune as belonging to one religion; ultimately depicting Muslims in a negative light. “After seeing the script, I spoke to [director Jon Favreau and producer Kevin Feige] and explained that it was a superhero movie, in which the bad guys can be mercenaries. To my delight, they saw the point.” Speaking about Hollywood and screenwriters in general, he added, “They don’t know what we are like in real life and it is not their responsibility to clear misconceptions about us.”

Based on what we've seen from Iron Man 3 so far, Faran Tahir may have had an influence on Marvel and director Shane Black's take on The Mandarin, played by Sir Ben Kingsley. Beyond the inclusion of the Ten Rings, there's no further indication that Iron Man 3 will see Raza's return.

Back in 2009, however, Faran Tahir pondered the idea by stating, “At some point, they want to introduce Mandarin into the storyline and my character, like Mandarin, was the leader of the Ten Rings. We left it open because, partly, it makes good business sense for us to leave a little bit of uncertainty for people to speculate on.” Oddly, Tahir failed to offer an update on the matter amid his chat above.



Marvel Studios’ “Iron Man 3” pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man? Starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce, Rebecca Hall, Stephanie Szostak, James Badge Dale with Jon Favreau and Ben Kingsley, “Iron Man 3” is directed by Shane Black from a screenplay by Drew Pearce & Shane Black and is based on Marvel’s iconic Super Hero Iron Man, who first appeared on the pages of “Tales of Suspense” (#39) in 1963 and had his solo comic book debut with “The Invincible Iron Man” (#1) in May of 1968. “Iron Man 3” is presented by Marvel Studios in association with Paramount Pictures & DMG Entertainment. Marvel Studios’ President Kevin Feige is producing & Jon Favreau, Louis D’Esposito, Stephen Broussard, Victoria Alonso, Alan Fine, Charles Newirth, Stan Lee & Dan Mintz are executive producers. The film hits May 3, 2013, & is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.


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johnblake - 1/7/2013, 7:28 PM
Tpain plus 3
vtopa - 1/7/2013, 7:33 PM
IF that was his intent, it didn't work. I'm sure if you asked movie goers exiting the theater what religion they thought Tahir and his "mercenaries" were, 95% of them would have assumed "muslim." We're at war in Afghanistan with the Taliban, what else would people think?
Spartan - 1/7/2013, 7:39 PM
Its not the movies he needs to worry about putting his religion "of peace" in a bad light.
Its all his fellow Muslims who do suicide bombings, honor kill women who dare show their face or become educated and and the silent majority who don't speak out against the radicals. Islam needs a reformation not good Hollywood PR.
AlexRival - 1/7/2013, 7:41 PM
@vtopa In this day and age I'm sure most people would say that they're Muslim terrorists. But to people in the future, they'll just look like Middle Eastern bad guys. To us that sounds the same but I think people that weren't so submersed in the War on Terror are going to view it differently.
Limehead - 1/7/2013, 7:47 PM
LOL @Spartan's trolling
havoc9987 - 1/7/2013, 7:48 PM
unknownfacts - 1/7/2013, 7:49 PM
So the reason they went with Kingsley instead of I don't know SOME ONE OF ASIAN DECENT to play the Mandarin(which by the way is a chinese term)all to show muslims in a better light.Isn't showing muslims in a beter light becomes moot when your playing the bad guys?
raspedoits - 1/7/2013, 8:02 PM
As opposed to a "positive depiction" of muslims? lol
OptimusPrimeTime - 1/7/2013, 8:04 PM
He was good, but Kingsley will own. Far better choice.
ManofSteel23 - 1/7/2013, 8:04 PM
hmmmm no,I imagined when stark goes back to [frick] shit up where he was kept hostage to be real,if only a superhero could go there now and annihilate all that side of this world
dancingmonkey08 - 1/7/2013, 8:17 PM
He needs to come back!

And I wonder what the change in script was, was it referencing that there was many nationalities in the camp where Tony and Yinsen were kept hostage?
fanboy03191 - 1/7/2013, 8:24 PM
He's just making it look like all Muslims are psychopathic mad bombers who picks fights with the helpless and the U.S. As another poster said, well done. That is exactly what I figured... *rolls eyes*
FirstAvenger - 1/7/2013, 8:35 PM
Interesting.
thewonderer - 1/7/2013, 9:02 PM
lol are we making fun of Muslims now?

Tell me more about how every other religion is more peaceful than Islam? (condescending Wonka)

They ALL have their crazies or extremists.

I frankly don't care if you think all religion is stupid, just don't single one out.
vtopa - 1/7/2013, 9:09 PM
@thewonderer, well put. As for the other demeaning posts about muslims on this board, what a shame. I thought the CBM community was better than that.
pOoPEE - 1/7/2013, 9:11 PM
@ Sparten

Considering the history of Christians can the West really talk, especially since America is busy killing 100 hundreds of thousands of innocent people in illegal wars because umm because umm they can just confess and say sorry and God will forgive them bahahahhahahaah.
pOoPEE - 1/7/2013, 9:13 PM
You would expect people who love comics admire heroes because they have great ethics and character, but no still ignorant, keep watching Fox news with ya wife/cousin :-)

TheGambitFreakIsBatmanOfCBM - 1/7/2013, 9:15 PM
IMDb has him listed as Cobra Commander in G.I.JOE: Retaliation.
continuezero - 1/7/2013, 9:28 PM
WTF? Pretty sure his character is dead. Staine paralyzed him and told his men to clean up as they start shooting down all the men. Obviously they dont show it but come on, we're to believe he made it out somehow?
Obi - 1/7/2013, 9:30 PM
@spartan Suicide bombings, honour killing and any forms of oppresion are all forbidden to the majority of Muslims. It is only a small sect (wahabism) which came about around 200 years ago that take part in these atrocities. The majority of Muslims follow Sufism or classical Islam which teaches self purification and discipline. unfortunately the media always choose a small group of violent idiots to represent the whole Muslim nation.
TheAbomination - 1/7/2013, 9:46 PM
Dodged a bullet there, Marvel.
CharacterAssassin - 1/7/2013, 10:14 PM
Why rub religion into a fantasy film? It always seem to ruin the good thing most people like to watch which is a good film.
wavehunter - 1/7/2013, 10:28 PM
He should have been cast as The Mandarin. He has the acting chops to pull it off and it would have been a nice tie in with the first IM
iuhgluiblbjjkhkjhkljh - 1/7/2013, 10:45 PM
Lex Luthor, anyone?
RR51 - 1/7/2013, 11:00 PM
Holy Crap!!! We got some ignant mava[frick]ers in here.
Jollem - 1/7/2013, 11:07 PM
Jollem - 1/7/2013, 11:11 PM
batfan175 - 1/7/2013, 11:14 PM
@Spartan: oh i am sure the Oklahoma City Bomber was Muslim...oh damn he wasn't....terrosrism does not belong to one religion only so don't put all people in the same pot. It's like using the word "Christian" when we know that there are Protestants (Anglicans, lutherians, Calvinists) and Catholics who have very different ideas about many different subjects and the same goes for Muslims.

@Obi: couldn't agree with you more.
MrDonut - 1/7/2013, 11:23 PM
I thought Yinsen was a good, unbiased depiction of a Muslim (not sure if the character was Muslim or not but I assumed so)... As 4 all the prejudice here, it's just ridiculous... No majority should characterised due to the actions of a 'vocal' minority; not all Catholics are pedophilic priests, same applies here
prettynuclear2 - 1/7/2013, 11:30 PM
For some reason people don't overreact to an evil muslim villain but if he's asian...

TheDesertGorilla - 1/7/2013, 11:42 PM
derka derka mohammed jihad
RadicalDuck - 1/8/2013, 1:11 AM
@IronFan93 - yep. Little bit more of my faith in humanity is lost.
mgeoff88 - 1/8/2013, 1:32 AM
Big ups to Marvel for listening to him and not racially stereotyping terrorists.

Not all Muslim people are extremists. Some people are so ignorant when somebody brings up a Middle Eastern religion or ethnicity they immediately label them all terrorists.

It's really sad and troubling that people are so quick to judge someone on the color of their skin, but not the content of their character. I actually feel sorry for people that go through their entire lives being so ignorant of other cultures and people.

Don't people understand the very foundations the USA was built upon? It's liberty and justice for ALL! All! As in every nationality and ethnicity in the entire world! Every person, no matter country they are from, deserves to be treated equally, with dignity and respect. That's the true American way! That's what it means to be a true patriot here.

@pretty Wow, those people shouldn't even be allowed to watch movies. They lack the basic intelligence to determine reality from fiction, apparently.
GetsugaTensho22 - 1/8/2013, 1:37 AM
I Remember how absolutely hilarious it was for me when in the cinema, everybody was being all serious and reading the subtitles to understand what him and the Ten Rings were saying, while i was just "hey! i can understand what they're saying!" LOL, yea, one of the things that made Iron Man a fun movie to watch.
nikgrid - 1/8/2013, 2:54 AM

@vtopa -
-IF that was his intent, it didn't work. I'm sure if -you asked movie goers exiting the theater what -religion they thought Tahir and his "mercenaries" -were, 95% of them would have assumed "muslim."

Ahh you mean AMERICAN movie goers.

-We're at war in Afghanistan with the Taliban, what -else would people think?

You make a good point, however I would hope that rational people would realise that they are NOT the Taliban because they are in a CBM. But you guys get that [frick]ing "War" shoved down your throats nightly by Fox News reminding you to be afraid of everything.It's not your fault.
nikgrid - 1/8/2013, 3:00 AM
@pretty - Fvcking hell! those people are ignorant Morons who help make the U.S. look like it's populated by ignorant Morons (I know it's completely)

That is some scary shit! Do they not realise that it's a movie, and those are A-C-T-O-R-S, their job is to P-R-E-T-E-N-D that they are bad guys.

Btw Pretty my sarcasm is directed at the [frick]tards in your post, not you.
jimoakley666 - 1/8/2013, 3:00 AM
You've really got to see American ignorance to believe it. It really is a wonder to behold.
KingMarvel - 1/8/2013, 4:01 AM
Why do i have the feeling that MArvel studios is changing the Mandering from chinese to arabic (BIN LADEN) to suit the angst, fear of the mass of today??? And can somebody telle why that is respecting the source material???? >:(
Kyos - 1/8/2013, 4:04 AM
These tweets about Red Dawn are satire. I refuse to believe otherwise.
Theunderdog - 1/8/2013, 5:02 AM
I AM MUSLIM AND I HOPE YOU GUYS ACCEPT ME REGARDING MY RELIGION LET JUST BE ALLY BROTHER AND SISTER DESPITE OUR RELIGION
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