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Mickey Rourke in 'Iron Man 2'?

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Jan 08, 2009 | 6:01am EST

Mickey Rourke is on a roll ... and isn't slowing down! 

He and Sam Rockwell are in talks to play villains in Jon Favreau’s Iron Man 2, it was reported late yesterday. Although details of the script for the Justin Theroux-penned sequel are scant, The Hollywood Reporter says word is Rourke would play a Russian heavy named Ivan who becomes Whiplash. Variety, however, contends the villain goes by the moniker the Crimson Dynamo – and the Internet fanboys appear to agree.

Further, THR reports that Rockwell would play Justin Hammer, a multibillionaire businessman and a Tony Stark rival.

THR describes the Rourke villain as “a tattooed Russian heavy named Ivan who becomes Whiplash, a man with deadly, technologically enhanced coils.” Variety calls Crimson Dynamo, “a heavily tattooed Russian arms dealer…considered to be an evil version of Iron Man because he battles the superhero in a nuclear-powered suit of armor.”

A handful of other outlets tend to agree with the Dynamo theory.

Collider.com says, “Crimson Dynamo has a longer mythos to draw from and fans like to see established villains instead of new upstarts.”

EmpireOnline.com contends, “Since the Whiplash character in the comics has never been Russian, since he looks more like Rockwell (so maybe they've got his casting wrong) and since the coils thing sounds a bit Doc Ock, we're going to go ahead and call it for Rourke as Crimson Dynamo, who is after all an actually popular Iron Man villain.”

LatinoReview.com, meanwhile, is leaning slightly the other way, saying THR should “know that Whiplash is American and was never named Ivan. But Whiplash did work for Justin Hammer, who could be Rockwell's character.” Further, adds the site’s El Guapo, “I'm actually thinking now that he really could be playing Whiplash.”

The film is looking for a spring production start.

The cast already includes Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow and Don Cheadle. The part of Stark’s assistant Natasha is as-yet unfilled.

In a Phoenix-like renaissance, the busy Rourke is currently winning praise for his turn in Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler and has also signed on to join the ensemble cast of Sylvester Stallone’s The Expendables.

Rockwell, who has largely acted in indie dramas would mark a rare studio appearance with Iron Man 2 – although he did play a bratty bad guy in McG’s 2000 Charlie’s Angels take.

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