1st photos from Iron Man 3 set reveal patriotic new armor

Director Shane Black has finally kicked off his Iron Man 3 shoot out in North Carolina, and we've already got our first glimpse of something new. A lucky set spy snagged photos of this star-spangled armor, but what's more intriguing is that it doesn't seem to belong to Tony Stark.

Though the film might take this armor design in any direction it wants, what we seem to be looking at here is a big-screen version of the Iron Patriot, a version of the Iron Man armor introduced in Marvel's Dark Avengers series back in 2009. The suit was originally worn by longtime Spider-Man nemesis Norman Osborn after he took over S.H.I.E.L.D. and transformed it into his own puppet agency, H.A.M.M.E.R. (long story), where he had frequent run-ins with Tony Stark.

Of course, on film Norman Osborn is still very much a Sony property, so odds are he won't be making an appearance in Iron Man 3. But there's still room for the Iron Patriot idea in the flick, especially since Stark was butting heads with the U.S. military last time out. Of course, how that all ties in to what Nick Fury might be up to is anybody's guess.

So who's that in the suit? Reports are it's actor James Badge Dale, who you may have seen in things like The Pacific and The Grey. All we know about his character so far is a name on IMDB: Eric Savin. We likely won't figure out just what he's doing in that suit (or who gave it to him) for quite some time, but we're always up for seeing more Stark tech on the big screen.

Check out the full-size shots of the patriotic armor on set below.

(Via Comic Book Movie)

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