Oscar nominee Jessica Chastain's improbable boom to stardom in just a year (when she appeared in Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life) looked like it would continue two weeks ago when she began negotiating for a role in Iron Man 3. Unfortunately, fans of the The Help actress hoping to see her in the Marvel property have just been let down a bit, as Chastain says she won't be able to take the role.
Chastain broke the news via her own Facebook page on Sunday, citing scheduling difficulties as the reason for her withdrawal.
"Sorry to say that Iron Man 3 isn't going to work out. My schedule is jammed packed and I can't fit anything else in. The press announced my possible attachment far too soon. I know many of you wanted me to be involved, and I'm so sorry to disappoint you. Hopefully there'll be another Marvel film in my future. Shane Black and everyone on the IM3 team are really wonderful. I'm very excited to see the film when it comes out. xx"
Given the sheer quantity of films Chastain appeared in last year (seven) and that she has coming out this year (six, including the now-filming Kathryn Bigelow Bin Laden film Zero Dark Thirty), the news that she's too busy is no surprise. This is the second tentpole that she has turned down this year: in January she backed out of Joseph Kosinski's apocalyptic sci-fi film Oblivion, which would have starred her alongside Tom Cruise.
Chastain was set to play a "sexy scientist" with intelligence rivaling Tony Stark's. Marvel had previously approached Isla Fisher (Wedding Crashers), Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds) and Gemma Arterton (Clash of the Titans) about the role—no word on if any of those actresses will be back in the running for the part.I could personally see the latter two holding their own with Robert Downey Jr.
Iron Man 3 films this summer with a release date of May 3, 2013.