With the release of Iron Man 3 just days away, Tony Stark-fever as at an all-time frenzy and in April in anticipation of the summer blockbuster, Marvel released the animated feature Iron Man: Rise of Technovore. Writer Brandon Auman took some time to answer a few questions I had to throw at him about the film and the Marvel animated and cinematic universes…
What difficulties or advantages did you face writing Iron Man: Rise of Technovore compared to other Marvel projects you’ve written in the past?
Well, knowing that it’s Madhouse animating, you know it’s going to look amazing and have extraordinary action scenes. Because it’s anime, and Madhouse wants to keep as much of the work in-house as they can, I only got to write the story treatment. The script was written by Kengo Koji (Tokyo Gore Police). I would have loved to write it, or even co-write it with him, but alas, it was not meant to be. So the broader story, the details, the dialogue, etc. was out of my hands. That’s okay though, because I still loved it. I love anime, so the slower scenes, the philosophy, didn’t bother me one bit. I’m sure it will bother non-anime fans… the ones who really only like western storytelling.
What inspired you to have Ezekiel Stane as the villain and create the idea of Technovore around him?
He’s a great villain from Matt Fraction’s Iron Man run. Madhouse wanted him to feel more Eastern by making him younger and more androgynous, very dreamy and philosophical. I was kind of surprised at first when I checked out the script but then again I wasn’t, because so many Japanese villains are like that. Technovore came because we were looking for a new form of armor and tech… and living bio-organic, viral-like tech seemed like the next logical step in armor creation.
Norman Reedus is a lot of fun as The Punisher in Iron Man: Rise of Technovore. Have you considered writing a Punisher animated film and having Norman reprise his role?
Hmmm… I’ve tackled some other stuff since, but not any Punisher projects. I always seem to get involved with ol’ Shellhead one way or another…
The animation in the film is gorgeous. What’s it like to see something that originated in your imagination brought to life so vividly?
It’s amazing. It’s kind of thrilling, it feels like it popped out of my head and went through an anime filter, which is incredible. Kind of a dream come true.
What were the challenges in merging the worlds of Iron Man Anime and the Marvel Cinematic Universe for Iron Man: Rise of Technovore?
I never actually intended it to tie into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I think that was probably all Madhouse, with maybe Megan Thomas Bradner and Harrison Wilcox goading them on, haha. Not exactly sure, but I loved that they included the suit case armor! Honestly, I thought of it as a stand-alone film, a kind of one shot, outside of the comics and the live action movies. We didn’t even really consider it tied to the Iron Man anime series.
Can you tell me anything about your upcoming work on Hulk and the Agents of Smash?
Not really sure what I can reveal, other than that it’s very cool, super action-packed and totally different. I love that Marvel is taking chances and trying unique takes on classic characters. And why not? Doing the same old storyline is boring.
Iron Man: Rise of Technovore is currently available on DVD/BluRay as well as digital download on iTunes and Amazon.