IRON MAN 3: Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) Was Supposed To Die!

Scoop! I just came across some intriguing Iron Man 3 storyboards that were created by storyboard artist, Dan Sweetman. They include an alternate version of Happy Hogan's confrontation with Savin, in which Happy (Jon Favreau) would've died.

After Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) meets Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) at Stark Industries, Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau), who is the Head of Security, decides to follow Killian's "Shifty" bodyguard/henchman Savin (James Badge Dale). This leads Happy to the Chinese theater in Los Angeles, where he witnesses Savin delivering a batch of Extremis medicine in a briefcase to Jack Taggart (Ashley Hamilton). When Savin walks away Happy intentionally bumps Taggart, knocking the briefcase to the ground and it opens. Happy pockets one of the metal objects from the briefcase as he helps Taggart collect the contents that spilled out. When Happy begins to walk away with his prize he is quickly confronted by Savin. Happy punches Savin right in the kisser but Savin is unfazed by the blow. Savin's face glows red, which catches Happy by surprise. Savin then grabs Happy's arm and tosses. At this point Taggart begins to glow bright red and screams to Savin for help. Happy and Savin realize something bad is about to happen and duck for cover just as Taggart explodes. In the film, the explosion causes Happy to end up in a coma, but in these Iron Man 3 storyboards below, you can see that the original plan was to have Happy die.

Do you think going with a coma was a better decision than killing Happy off? I wonder how much more powerful the following scene with a distraught Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) issuing a televised threat to the Mandarin would've been if Happy was dead. Instead Marvel and director Shane Black chose the safe route and had Happy wake up from his coma so that he could watch Downton Abbey.

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?

Iron Man 3 was directed by Shane Black, from a screenplay written by Drew Pearce. The film opened in theaters May 3, 2013. It stars: Robert Downey Jr. (Tony Stark), Gwyneth Paltrow (Virginia Potts), Don Cheadle (Col. James Rhodes), and Ben Kingsley as The Mandarin.
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