‘I was at my kid’s laser tag birthday party,’ said actor
Don Cheadle shared that he was given a very short time, only two hours, to make a decision about joining the cast of Iron Man 2 and committing to a six-movie contract with Marvel. Cheadle took on the role of James “Rhodey” Rhodes, also known as War Machine, in the 2010 film, replacing Terrence Howard who previously portrayed the character.
During a recent interview with GQ magazine, Don Cheadle revealed the circumstances surrounding his decision to take on the role. He mentioned that he received the offer while attending his child’s laser tag birthday party. The Marvel team informed him that they were extending the offer but needed a quick response. Cheadle was aware that if he declined, they would move on to another actor for the role.
“They told me, ‘This is going to happen very quickly. Take an hour to decide if you want to do it.’ Can you believe that? It was a six-movie deal! They expected me to make a decision in just one hour?”
Cheadle revealed that he inquired about the other five movies included in the deal with Marvel. Their response was straightforward: “It’s going to be these Avengers and this is what it is, so you have to say yes or no.”
When Cheadle sought clarification on his character’s development throughout the films, he received an uncertain response: “We don’t have that information, but this is the offer, and you have one hour to decide.”
Cheadle shared that he was attending his child’s birthday party when he received the offer from the studio. It was at that moment that the studio gave him a two-hour deadline to make a decision.
Cheadle said, “So we played laser tag for two hours and I was talking to my wife and we thought about it and talked to my agent and tried to get as much information as we could.”
Cheadle explained that he and his wife engaged in a two-hour session of laser tag and had discussions while considering the offer. They took the time to think about it, consulted with his agent, and gathered as much information as possible.
Cheadle’s multi-film contract with Marvel Studios concluded last year, but he is returning to play the role of Rhodey in the upcoming Disney+ series Secret Invasion, which also features Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury. He is also set to star in his own series called Armor Wars.