Don Cheadle Was Initially Up For ‘James Rhodes’ In IRON MAN, Says Terrance Howard

Recalling specific details that ultimately resulted in Don Cheadle replacing him as James Rhodey Rhodes in Iron Man sequels, Terrence Howard has revealed Marvel wanted Cheadle for the first film.

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By DCMarvelFreshman - 3/17/2013
Indicating a “what-if” scenario similar to The Incredible Hulk director Louis Leterrier meeting with The Avengers’ Bruce Banner actor Mark Ruffalo before casting Edward Norton, Iron Man actor Terrence Howard recently appeared on Sway in the Morning and reminisced about loosing the James Rhodey Rhodes role to fellow actor Don Cheadle. Check source link for the video.

“It was about $4.5 million [for the first film]. The second time, [Marvel] said ‘We think the movie will be successful with or without you. So, instead of the $8 million that we said we were gonna pay you, we’re going to let you come back for a million dollars.’ We did a three-picture deal already, so it wasn’t even negotiated. But I was like ‘nah, we’re good’! I didn’t know it wasn’t a mutually binding contract; it was only beneficial for them and they could bring me back or not. [Overall] they made a great deal. Don [Cheadle] and Robert [Downey Jr.] get along well. Initially, they wanted Don for that role, but my agent pushed me in. I never had beef with Don or [Marvel] about it.”


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, and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. Marvel Studios will also release “Thor: The Dark World ” on November 8, 2013; “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” on April 4, 2014; “Guardians of the Galaxy” on August 1, 2014; the sequel to “Marvel's The Avengers” on May 1, 2015; and “Ant-Man” on November 6, 2015!
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thorhulk77 - 3/17/2013, 1:38 PM
Interesting tidbit
Azazel1 - 3/17/2013, 1:39 PM
Marvel screws it's actors hard-especially the A-list ones, great job Marvel!!!!
KNIGHT3000 - 3/17/2013, 1:40 PM
Interesting.... Good Sport...
hayyam - 3/17/2013, 1:40 PM
Marvel is cheap. Wow. How surprising after all these talented director choices like the guys who made Me, You and Dupree.
MrCBM56 - 3/17/2013, 1:40 PM
I would've loved if he was back gor IM2 and 3, but i still think don does a great rhodey and war machine! Im also glad he is a good sport about not having the role anymore and it was given to Don
RonSwanson - 3/17/2013, 1:41 PM
Is that fat faced [frick] still talking about Iron Man? Terrence Howard has an incurable case of sour grapes, he was the worse part of Iron Man.
BANE5000 - 3/17/2013, 1:42 PM
They are both great actors, but to me Howard fit the role better, seemed to also fit more as a military guy than Cheadle, if that makes any sense to everyone? :]
calin88 - 3/17/2013, 1:42 PM
this is old news, Feige said a long time ago that Cheadle was their initial choice for Rhodey
Chloefornication - 3/17/2013, 1:43 PM
That's how Marvel studios work. And they hire talented actors to play ridiculous roles that gives no opportunity for them to, well...ACT. Sam Rockwell and Mickey Rourke in IM2 are good examples of that.
TheOneAboveAll - 3/17/2013, 1:45 PM
Terrence Howard was better in the role.
Tony93 - 3/17/2013, 1:46 PM
hugo weaving.. terrible red skull..
NovaCorpsFan - 3/17/2013, 1:48 PM
Why do people complain about Marvel being smart with their money?
DCMarvelFreshman - 3/17/2013, 1:50 PM
@calin88 Must have slipped pass me. Thnx for the heads up though:)
TMW1987ProudProWrestlingFan - 3/17/2013, 1:50 PM
I like both as actors, but I much prefer Howard in the role of Rhodey & wish he was kept on board.

Cheadle doesn't bring out Rhodey for me on the screen as Howard did IMO.
SpectacularJoShFest - 3/17/2013, 1:51 PM
Terrence Howard had better chemistry with RDJ but I liked Cheadle better.
bbarber2323 - 3/17/2013, 1:51 PM
@Chloefornication...how bout you NEVER watch another MCU flick again, k??? That way we dont have to hear ur ridiculous bullshit. Ya right...you will be there at the midnight screening with the rest of us so just stfu moron.
SpectacularJoShFest - 3/17/2013, 1:52 PM
BTW...I loved that image with Howard in the Back and Cheadle Wearing the Iron Patriot.
MrMartinMarvel - 3/17/2013, 1:53 PM
What is it with Marvel? First Ruffalo now Cheadle? Oh well I'm just glad they have them on board now.
PaulRom - 3/17/2013, 1:53 PM
I never cared for Howard as Rhodey. He wasn't terrible, but I think Cheadle's a much better fit. One of the rare recastings I'm supportive of.
tonytony - 3/17/2013, 1:56 PM
cheadle is better anyway. However damn no wonder you get the actors trying to walk away from seemingly successful roles.
TheGambitFreakIsBatmanOfCBM - 3/17/2013, 1:57 PM
Boo-hoo. $1 million dollars for working with some of Hollywood's best for a few months. Food, and other expenses paid in full and recognition from everyone, thus maybe getting you future jobs. Not to mention a contract for sequels. I never heard of Howard until Iron Man, haven't gave a shit about him since. just sayin'.
TheGambitFreakIsBatmanOfCBM - 3/17/2013, 1:59 PM
[frick] Howard and [frick] Cheadle. Jamie Foxx will always be War Machine in my mind.
BANE5000 - 3/17/2013, 2:02 PM
@ Tony93

Weaving did alright as Red Skulll...though he couldve been more fiendish and menacing i think.

If Red Skull does return in the MCU and Weaving as he has said himself doesnt want to come back for the role, I still say either Mads Mikkelsen or Robert Knepper would be awesome replacements :]
hayyam - 3/17/2013, 2:04 PM
Weaving is bad because of short screen time.
Duratok - 3/17/2013, 2:04 PM
He fails to mention that Robert was only paid $500,000 for the first movie. He's welcome to think he's worth sixteen times more than RDJ. He was in the movie for a total of what, twelve minutes, and he made sixteen times as much as the lead.

This is because Terrance is a bit of a prina doña. He had won an Oscar for best male lead not so long before this and he began to overvalue his time as an actor.
Extremis - 3/17/2013, 2:07 PM
@TheGambitFreakIsBatmanOfCBM

me too!jamie fox would have killed it as RHODEY!
flames809 - 3/17/2013, 2:10 PM
that messed up if you ask me marvel should of stayed to the contract.
Gulon180 - 3/17/2013, 2:13 PM
jeezus we're still listing to this guy talk about this shit.
thewonderer - 3/17/2013, 2:13 PM
@Duratok

And you neglect to mention RDJ got paid 50 million for Avengers while Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth, both much better actors with much harder scenes to do, got paid 1 million each.

Marvel is scumbag to actors, and RDJ in personality is farthest from Iron Man in extorting and demanding that much money.

I'm on side Howard,Norton,Rourke,*insert disgruntled actor in MCU here*, I love some of Marvels movies but they are [frick]ing assholes.

Howard was a MUCH MUCH better Rhodey than Cheadle, whose angry for 99% of the time at his "best friend"
Chloefornication - 3/17/2013, 2:24 PM
@bbarber2323

You can't handle the truth, can you?
TheRationalOne - 3/17/2013, 2:25 PM
thewonderer - You are smoked [frick]in stupid. Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth are better actors than Robert [frick]in Downey?!?! Did I read that right? SMOKED STUPID!!!

Marvel isn't being cheap. They're being smart. Why the [frick] should they keep somebody around who thinks that just because he was in Crash that he is worthy that much higher of a paycheck to play a supporting character. 1 million is still more than enough money. They are also a very young movie studio so they are still learning a lot too. Its not being a scumbag or asshole or cheap. Its making smart business moves and not dumping an unnecessary amount of money into a egotistical actor when you can spend that money on making the film look better, market it better, and make more money on the backend.
jessepostal - 3/17/2013, 2:26 PM
one million for ten minutes of screen time, i think that's pretty fair. What would have taken a month at most?
tobeyoungagain - 3/17/2013, 2:29 PM
Some of you have to much invested in this, which is insane when you think about because he was on the inside looking out, yet he doesn't have a problem with what happened, and you're on the outside looking in, making judgments based on illusions you've created, because none of you were there. And when you think about, in all honesty, this is the moment when you realize, it's time to get a life. Sorry guys, but I have to call it for what it is.
BlueDemon - 3/17/2013, 2:40 PM
Don Cheadle sucks balls as Rhodey. Terrence Howard was perfect for the role. Its a damn shame he was shafted.
INSTANTJUSTICE - 3/17/2013, 2:46 PM



Now he'd do it for $50,000.


DioFoRio - 3/17/2013, 2:50 PM
exactly Jessie...
thewonderer - 3/17/2013, 2:50 PM
@Therationalone

You realize the definition of acting? It's playing a role that is the farthest of who you actually are and nailing it. Do you think Chris Hemsworth is a cocky, arrogant god? No, but he pulls it off so well. Chris Evans isn't a saint figure believing in America. THAT is acting.

Does anyone know how much RDJ got paid for Iron Man 2? Because I would bet it was a lot. And according to Howard, MARVEL PROMISED HIM 8 MILLION, a lot yeah but they told him that much. He didn't demand anything by the sound of it.

People here claim RDJ is perfect for Iron Man because HE IS Iron Man, now from an acting standpoint, where does that fall? It doesn't, the man gets paid 50 million FOR BEING ON SET. All his Iron Man scenes ARE CGI.

Take that final battle of Avengers for example. RDJ was never there, nope, did not have to do any of the difficult stunts the other actors had to. Destroys a lot of the magic of that final scene for me.

Luminus - 3/17/2013, 2:51 PM
So let me get this straight, it's okay for an actor to renegotiate his contract for more money if the film is successful, but the studio can't renegotiate their contract with the actor if they find the film will succeed without them? Double standard, anyone?
McNyagano - 3/17/2013, 2:52 PM
@thewonderer...

..RDJ got back end deals on the profits ( 6 to 7 %) of the film, that's why he got $50 million and he deserves it, he owns the character of Tony Stark and he works hard for it...His upfront salary was $3 or $4 milion...

Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner and Mark Ruffalo all signed on for small upfront fees and ultimately will make about $2 million to $3 million on Avengers with bonuses. Samuel L. Jackson and Scarlett Johansson, who signed deals to pop up in several Marvel movies, are said to be making about twice that for Avengers with bonuses.

UrbanTheEmcee - 3/17/2013, 2:53 PM
You Marvel fanboys are something else. This man just gave his blessings to Cheadle, and all you do is rant about how Marvel is the greatest for back-dooring it's actors.

P.S. Howard was better as Rhodey IMO. Cheadle's the better actor, but he doesn't fit Rhodey to me. Then again IM2 sucked to me, so maybe it was the script.
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