Reported by the homies at AICN by way of IESB, Samuel L. Jackson is indeed slated to have a much more “prominent role” in the Iron Man sequel.  This is good – but not necessarily surprising – news as the way that the Avengers movie is shaping up, it seemed to be a foregone conclusion that that would be the case.  However, to have it confirmed by Sam the Man himself after talking directly to Favreau is reassuring. 

Especially reassuring in fact, considering that this comes on the heels of word that Don Cheadle would be replacing Terrence Howard.  I was disheartened by that news, as Cheadle is one of the best actors working today, but Howard was good – if underutilized – in the role of Rhodey and I was looking forward to seeing him continue it, especially in the big gray tin can.

Fury belongs in an Iron Man movie as he and Stark have a long history together, going back way before the Ultimates reset the clock on everything.  Back to what I consider the Golden Age of Iron Man when John Romita was doing the art and Shellhead was in his classic armor, you know, the one with the two red iron danishes on his hips.

Marvel’s making some dubious choices in establishing their new franchises, first of all with nearly stopping our hearts with the possibility that Favreau wouldn’t be back to direct the sequel, then the Howard debacle.  At least this is one thing that seems to be going right.

Thanks to Matalo for the scoop.