Playing a superhero is never easy—especially when somebody else has played the role first. Such was the dilemma for actor Don Cheadle, who takes over the role of James "Rhodey" Rhodes from Terrence Howard in next summer's "Iron Man 2." In addition to replacing Howard, Cheadle also gets to don the War Machine armor, something that Howard was never able to achieve.
In an interview with Moviefone, Cheadle admitted to some awkwardness surrounding the takeover due to his friendship with Howard—but the discomfort didn't last too long.
"Terrence is a friend of mine," said Cheadle. "But the actual playing it, I just felt like it was my role. I wasn't made to feel like I had to sort of take care of what was done before. I really feel like I could make it my own."
A first look at Cheadle as War Machine debuted during this year's Comic-Con in San Diego, with the reaction from fans widely positive. According to the actor, playing War Machine was certainly different than anything he's done in the past, but only in the best of ways—particularly because, by the sound of it, Cheadle's character will spend as much time in a suit-and-tie as he will in War Machine mode.
"I think the character that I play, my CGI character worked as much as I worked," he said. "The stuntman worked as much as I worked. It's a huge undertaking. It was great. It was a really different experience than I have worked on before."
While he said the job is further "down the road," Cheadle also confirmed that he'd have a starring role in "The Avengers," the superhero team-up flick that unites Iron Man with Captain America and Thor.
What do you think of Cheadle's thoughts on playing Rhodey? Are you excited to see him in "The Avengers" and as War Machine? Let us know in the comments section or on Twitter!