Ben Kingsley’s ‘Iron Man 3′ Villain: Who Is He?

by Ryan Rigley

Nizam in “Prince of Persia,” Dr. Cawley in “Shutter Island,” and Fagin in “Oliver Twist.” Sir Ben Kingsley is certainly no stranger to villanous men. Yesterday, Marvel fans were ecstatic to hear that Kingsley, who most recently played Georges Melies in Martin Scorsese’s “Hugo,” will be playing the role of antagonist in “Iron Man 3.” But good news though it may be, it’s still unclear as to who exactly Kingsley will be playing in the film.

Rumors of the English Oscar-winner playing Stark’s greatest foe, The Mandarin, were quickly dismissed as the threequel is said to be loosely based on Warren Ellis’ run on “Invincible Iron Man” called “Extremis.” Be that as it may, there are still a ton of interesting Iron Man villains who would be awesome to see up on the big screen, villains whose shoes we could easily see Kingsley filling.

Click past the jump for a look at our top “Iron Man 3″ villain picks for Kingsley!

» Aldrich Killian
One of the main antagonists of the “Extremis” arc, Dr. Killian seems to be the most likely choice for Kingsley at this point in time. After the military pulls its funding on the Extremis project, Dr. Aldrich Killian and his coworker, Maya Hansen, decide to sell the superhuman serum to terrorists with the hopes that Iron Man would come into conflict with the Extremis-enhanced soldiers and lose, thus proving the superiority of their product.

» Mallen
Another one of the main “Extremis” antagonists, Mallen is a member of the terrorist cell that is initially given the Extremis drug. Subsequently, Mallen is endowed with superhuman strength, speed, durability, stamina, and fire breath, which he uses to attack the Houston-based branch of the FBI and sets out to kill all of the major US leaders located in Washington, DC.

» Ghost
This raving anticapitalist saboteur has gained much notoriety since his indunction into the Thunderbolts during 2009’s “Dark Reign.” Not much is known about this mysterious madman’s past, other than the fact that he used to be an engineer/programmer at an IT company called Omnisapient. In addition to being highly intelligent, Ghost’s battle suit grants him the ability to become intangible and hack/reprogram all matters of electronic systems in his immediate vicinity.

» Controller
Basil Sandhurst was an electro-mechanical/chemical research scientist until his obsession with control put him at odds with the rest of his coworkers. Fusing a strength-enhancing exoskeleton to his body and deeming himself “The Controller,” Basil drains the cerebral energy of those around him utilizing slave discs that are directly connected to the micro-circuitry in his helmet. Even without the discs, he can psionically control those who are “weak-willed” and has limited telekinetic abilities.

» The Mandarin
We can still dream can’t we? Not only would Ben Kingsley be the perfect Mandarin, but isn’t it time that the world was introduced to Iron Man’s archnemesis? In addition to being a martial artist of the highest caliber, The Mandarin possesses one of the greatest scientific minds in the Marvel universe. On several different occassions, The Mandarin has been able to destroy Iron Man’s armor using nothing but his own two fists. His weapon of choice? Ten different alien rings that he wears on each of his fingers, each granting him a different otherworldly power.

Who do you think Kingsley is playing in the next “Iron Man” movie? Tell us your theories in the comments section or hit us up on Twitter!