Exclusive: Megan Thomas Bradner On The Iron Man: Rise Of Technovore Movie And The Future Of Marvel Anime
Iron Man: Rise Of The Technovore comes out on DVD today. The film is Marvel’s first full-length anime adventure. There have been anime shows like Wolverine, Blade, and the X-Men, but Tony Stark is the first to get the movie treatment. We weighed in on the film last week (you can check out our ‘A’ grade review here), but today we have an interview with Megan Thomas Bradner. Bradner has worked for Marvel TV as a producer on Iron Man: Armored Adventures as well as the anime shows and the Technovore movie. I got the opportunity to speak with Bradner late last week about the new film as well as what’s to come on the anime front.
I asked Bradner if the idea always was to go from the various TV shows into the movie arena, and she said that they had always planned for that to be the next step. Everyone was very pleased with the anime series and were excited to get the opportunity to make a movie. It was always intended to be an Iron Man film too. I asked if there were a list of characters they had batted around, but she confirmed that they wanted to do an Iron Man story from the start and that writer Brandon Auman was chosen because of his work on Iron Man: Armored Adventures. Auman had some experience with the Technovore in that series, so they thought he could handle it really well. As for who the big bad behind Technovore would be, Bradner stated that Matt Fraction’s work with Ezekiel Stane was a big influence for all involved. The idea was to bring him on as the Technovore to help tie all the ideas together. The Technovore is actually in the Iron Man comics if you didn’t already know. The villain appeared in a couple of issues, but never really gained much notoriety. Bradner jokingly said she would give a gold star to anyone that actually read the comics that featured Technovore, because that “was the dark days of the 90s.”
With every new project comes new challenges, and this one was no different. Brander said that there were some differences from doing the TV shows to doing the movie. The TV episodes are fast-paced and tell a story over a long amount of time, but with the movie the team was able to give it the same amount of attention but focus on just one story. Madhouse, who animated the shows and movie, continued to amaze everyone with their work and how they interpreted the characters.
When it came time to assemble a voice cast, Bradner said they did it a little differently from the TV shows. They tried to match up actors and characters as best they could. Matt Mercer, the film’s Tony Stark/Iron Man, had been on their radar for a while because of his work with Resident Evil. He came on board and they were very pleased with his take on Tony Stark. One of the most interesting choices was The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus as Frank Castle/The Punisher. Reedus was a big “get” for them. They were all fans of The Walking Dead, so when they knew the Punisher would be in the film they thought he would be a good fit for what they were trying to do. They started talks with Reedus and made an offer, which he accepted. It was a similar situation for the other cast members.
Of course she couldn’t say much about what the future holds, but she did say that the Marvel animes are something everyone would love to revisit. There are “definitely some things in the works” and we should expect more “movie goodness” sometime in the future. I asked Bradner, just as a fan, if there were any characters or groups she’d like to get the anime treatment. She said there are a lot of characters that got the anime treatment and there was a lot to like, but she’d love to revisit the X-Men. She has always had a soft spot for the mutants. If that happened, she’d love for Dazzler to be included. She’d really like to see Dazzler done in the anime style that the X-Men series used. She also thinks a really good Cloak and Dagger could be done. “That would be a weird one, but a fun one to do.” Iron Man: Rise of the Technovore was an impressive film, so it will be interesting to see what the next few projects in store will be. Have you checked out Technovore yet? Are there any characters you’d like to see get an anime series next?