the Mandarin

Feb. 06, 2014 | 4:46 p.m.

Ben Kingsley talks resurrecting the Mandarin for ‘All Hail the King’

Ben Kingsley is back as the Mandarin — or more precisely, actor Trevor Slattery — in Marvel’s new one-shot, “All Hail the King.” The Oscar winner originated the comic book villain for last summer’s blockbuster “Iron Man 3,” turning up as a dangerous terrorist determined to bring down billionaire playboy Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.). Of course, as the story advanced, the Mandarin was revealed to be something other than what he initially seemed, a character far removed from the scientist and martial artist who first appeared in comics in 1964’s “Tales of Suspense” No. 50. In director Shane Black’s film, Kingsley played to great comedic effect a failed English actor who was hired to create the role of a warrior philosopher with a driving hatred for America to help distract Stark from the machinations of Guy Pearce’s Aldrich Killian. […]
Dec. 23, 2013 | 5:20 p.m.

‘Doctor Who,’ ‘Hobbit,’ ‘Hunger Games,’ Batfleck: 2013 in review

2013 was a superb year for fans of genre entertainment. Major comic book heroes celebrated milestone anniversaries, as did “Doctor Who.” “The Walking Dead” and “Game of Thrones” continued to demonstrate that fantastic tales, both grim and transporting, can make for compelling, compulsory viewing. Dragons, female warriors and Tom Hiddleston stormed the multiplex in blockbuster fashion, while next-generation gaming consoles arrived, just in time for Christmas. There was plenty of big news about 2015 projects as well — namely, that J.J. Abrams will direct the first live-action “Star Wars” film since 2005, and that Ben Affleck will take over the role of Batman from Gotham City’s previous Caped Crusader, Christian Bale. Following are the Hero Complex picks for some of the most memorable moments in film, TV, comic books and games, in no particular order. Feel free to share your […]
March 19, 2013 | 4:00 a.m.

Ben Kingsley’s Mandarin vs. the 10 best comic-book movie villains

When Oscar winner Ben Kingsley signed on to play the Mandarin in “Iron Man 3,” he joined a legion of super actors who have brought serious chops to villainous roles in comic-book movies throughout the years. In the “Iron Man 3” trailers, Kingsley’s Mandarin is calm and possessed, like a Zen master of evil, as he orchestrates the destruction of Tony Stark’s world. “Ladies, children, sheep,” he says in the first “Iron Man 3” trailer in a menacing intonation all his own. “Some people call me a terrorist. I consider myself a teacher. Lesson No. 1: Heroes. There is no such thing.” Iron Man Quiz: How well do you know Tony Stark? But, whether Kingsley’s performance will live up to the best supervillain turns in cinema history remains to be seen. Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman in “Batman Returns,” for example, might […]
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