Marvel Studios makes some bad moves from time to time (like rushing into The Avengers without first exploring the team's individual characters further, releasing Captain America in 3D, etc.) but it also makes some good ones here and there. Today, the Disney-owned production company has made made a good one as it has hired Drew Pearce to pen Iron Man 3.
You may be thinking, "but Daniel, who the hell is Drew Pearce and why is his hiring a good move?" Well, for starters, he's already well-versed in the mythology of the Marvel Universe, having written the teen superhero/supervillian film Runaways for the company (the project has stalled momentarily as Marvel focuses on its A-list properties). He's also a general superhero veteran as creator of the British TV series No Heroics, a comical look at a bar in which super-powered heroes hangout. I don't need to be a detective to conclude that he's a fan-boy and will probably deliver the kind of Iron Man movie that I'd hoped the 2010 sequel would be.
However, the most significant assumption that I can take away from this story is that Marvel is going to give Tony Stark a fresh start in Iron Man 3, which is exactly what he needs. As we move toward the release of The Avengers, everything is about synergy; the studio wants to connect all its characters through Thor and Captain America, all leading up to the superhero spectacular headed to theaters May 2012. But these modern comic book films have all worked best with self-contained, one-off stories. My hope is that, with new blood like director Shane Black on board (in addition to Pearce), a stand alone story is exactly what we'll get on May 3rd 2013.