Solo star Alden Ehrenreich is set to join Marvel Studios’ Ironheart on the Disney+ in a role that is described as secret, but key. Dominique Thorne stars as Riri Williams, AKA Ironheart.
In the comics, Riri Williams is a 15-year-old engineering student. Riri lives with her mother Ronnie and her paternal aunt Sharon in Chicago. A certified super-genius, she attends the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on scholarship. Working alone, Riri designs a suit of armor similar to the Iron Man Armor using material stolen from campus. When campus security knocks at her door, she flees while wearing the suit.
In the suit, Williams prevents two inmates from escaping the New Mexico State Penitentiary. This brings her to the attention of Tony Stark.
In later iterations of the character Tony Stark’s consciousness, as AI, was embedded in her suit. Stark’s actions at the end of Avengers: Endgame left this plotline open. Will Robert Downey Jr return in a voice only role?
Thorne will make her debut as Riri Williams in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever this autumn in cinemas.
Ironheart was embroiled in some controversy back in 2016 when Marvel Comics and New York-based retailer Midtown Comics jointly decided to pull from circulation J Scott Campbell’s cover of the first issue of The Invincible Iron Man.
This had been produced exclusively for that store. The cover was criticized for sexualizing the character who is 15-years-old by showing her in a midriff-baring crop top. Campbell called the decision unfortunate and explained that it was depicting a:
“…sassy, coming-of-age young woman”.
Then this kicked off a whole new wave of criticism around the character being written by a white man rather than a black woman and highlighted low numbers of black female writers at Marvel Comics.
For the show, Ironheart has Chinaka Hodge on board as head writer. Ehrenreich recently completed work on Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer.