Robert Downey, Jr Considers Life After 'Iron Man'

It's almost impossible to consider anyone other than Robert Downey Jr. for the role of Tony Stark. The Oscar-nominated actor has suited up as ol' Shellhead in three Marvel movies now, with a fourth appearance in "Iron Man 3" coming up in just a year. But talk has already started about "Iron Man" life after RDJ, a future we definitely don't want to think about—nor does Downey himself.

"I would really hate for someone else to think they could step into my shoes," Downey told MTV News during the Tribeca Film Festival's "Avengers" red carpet in New York City, before turning to our reporter: "I wonder who's playing Tony Stark next. Is it you? Is that what you're here to tell me?"

Jokes aside, Downey downplayed talk that he'll have to vacate the red-and-gold armor before too much longer. "I know things are looking like that they could go on for a long while," he said. "As usual in my book, it's all about quality control and delivering a product that you can have this kind of reaction to. If they keep doing that, maybe I'll keep showing up."

If nothing else, the actor will be back for at least one more round as Tony Stark in "Iron Man 3," which is already assembling a hell of a cast. "'Iron Man 3' is really shaping up to be something special," he said after praising the "good old-fashioned British invasion" from incoming "Iron Man" actors Ben Kingsley, Guy Pearce and more. "We start in a couple weeks. I'm sure I'll be leaking secrets to you as we move ahead."

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