'Iron Man 2’ Rumors Cast Tim Robbins As Howard Stark, Hawkeye & Black Widow To Play Big Roles?

Tim RobbinsFor some reason, today seems to be the day that everyone is dropping big casting rumors all over the 'Webs. Whether it's the latest outrageous "Batman 3" casting rumors or the more believable "Iron Man 2" rumor we're tackling in this post, the grid is full of questionable connections between actors and live-action versions of comics characters. Seriously, folks -- did we miss a memo?

All jokes aside, though, this one could be one of the more believable of the bunch to hit the 'Net in the last 24 hours: The usually reputable Latino Review is reporting that Tim Robbins will play Howard Stark, the father of Tony Stark (as played by Robert Downey Jr.), in an "important flashback sequence that is going to set up the Avengers and Captain America films."

And as if that wasn't enough to get fans buzzing about the potential plot of the "Iron Man" sequel, there's also an anonymously sourced report that characters Hawkeye and Black Widow will not only be appearing in the film, but will have significant roles.

On the subject of Tim Robbins' casting, The Review reports that "Iron Man 2" director Jon Favreau "wanted to get a good actor because he didn't think the guy who played Howard in the last film could carry such an important scene." And while that seems like a legitimate enough reason for Robbins to be cast in the role, it's that mysterious "flashback sequence" that really has our interest piqued.

Back in September, the subject of Tony Stark's father came up in conversation with “Iron Man” screenwriters Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, and their reaction prompted us to form some connections of our own between Howard Stark and Captain America in Marvel's movie franchise. This new, vague description of Howard Stark's role in "Iron Man 2" doesn't seem to call any of our predictions into question, either.

As for Hawkeye and Black Widow playing a role in "Iron Man 2," we're left wondering what storyline the new film could be pulling from for it to include such a wide spectrum of characters from the Iron Man mythos (and if they'll take Jennifer Tilly up on her offer to play Black Widow). Of course, it's worth noting that Black Widow has been an on-again, off-again love interest of Tony Stark, which could complicate matters in his movie relationship with Pepper Potts. And heck, Black Widow has even been a villain in recent Marvel storylines -- so there's an angle worth considering, too.

So what do you think, readers? What's the connection between Howard Stark and Captain America? How will Hawkeye and Black Widow play into the film storyline? And who would you choose to play Hawkeye and Black Widow? So many questions, so few answers... So speak up, Splash Pagers!