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Robert Downey Jr gave Ironheart star great advice on Iron Man’s legacy

Tony Stark may be out of the MCU but that doesn't mean that Robert Downey Jr can't offer some advice to Iron Man's successor Ironheart

Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man

It turns out that Iron Man has risen from the grave to give some words of wisdom to his spiritual successor, Ironheart. In an interview with Screenrant, Dominique Thorne – who plays the role of Riri Williams in the upcoming Marvel series Ironheart – revealed how Robert Downey Jr gave her some encouraging advice about her gig in the MCU while filming Black Panther 2.

The recently released Marvel movie Black Panther 2 officially introduced Riri into the MCU. The MCU character is a talented graduate of MIT university and uses Wakandan tech to create an offensive suit – which, let’s be honest, very much resembles the armour of the fallen Avenger Tony Stark, who exited the franchise after the superhero movie Avengers: Endgame.

Being part of the second generation of heroes in Marvel, Thorne had some pretty big Iron Man shoes to fill. However, Robert Downey Jr made sure to tell the actor to embrace her own identity and let Riri go in her own direction instead of trying to be another version of Stark.

“I wasn’t able to speak with RDJ before we got into filming or anything, but right toward the conclusion of the film, I actually had the chance to speak with him through FaceTime,” Thorne said.

“A cast mate over on Ironheart had actually done a show with him and connected us, and he had some beautiful words to say about how much he believes that Riri Williams is and should always be her own person, her own thing. That this legacy is headed in the right direction and all the beautiful, encouraging things that you hope to hear from the Iron Man himself.”

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Riri’s story in the comics sees her being mentored by Tony Stark after she impresses the billionaire by making a powerful suit of armour using spare parts she found in college. Obviously, considering Tony’s fate in Endgame, the upcoming sci-fi series Ironheart will be following a different plot.

But it’s sweet to learn that Thorne and Downey Jr did engage in some form of mentorship relationship – even if it was only briefly and via FaceTime.

Ironheart is set to hit the streaming service Disney Plus in the Fall of 2023. For more MCU info, check out our guide to Marvel Phase 5.