A couple of weeks ago, a rumor appeared that had no basis in fact. It was that Ty Simpkins, the kid from Iron Man 3, would replace Robert Downey, Jr., in the Iron Man armor. George Marston has a great post on Newsarama that details how the rumor started and got out of hand.
But the idea of having to continue the Iron Man film franchise story after Downey leaves got me thinking about something that bugs me about comic book movies: Why do you have to reboot with a new origin story when the cast changes or have to explain a new actor (as would be the case in the Simpkins rumor)?
I give you two words: James Bond. A film franchise with 26 films (including non-Eon Productions produced Casino Royal (1967) and Never Say Never Again along with the upcoming Spectre) that spans over 50 years and seven actors, there has only been one origin story, and that didn’t come until 2006’s Casino Royal. People obviously have been okay with the main character being portrayed by different actors because the films are still successful at the box office.
It just baffles me that Hollywood, notorious for hoping for lightning to strike twice, doesn’t follow what the James Bond films have done.
Of course, the Batman film franchise did this with Val Kilmer and George Clooney, not as successfully, before rebooting with Christian Bale.
Anyway, I think just continuing with a new actor/cast without having to explain or reboot is the way to go.