In this MakingOf exclusive, we had the pleasure of talking to three of the artists behind the "Iron Man 2" suits: Legacy Effects’ Shane Mahan, Dave Merrit, and Ian Joyner. They spoke with us in detail about the process of building the suits, the rewards of seeing their work come to life, and specified the differences hard-core fans will notice in the new Iron Man suit.
Mahan, who helped start Legacy Effects in 2008 as a way to continue the character design, animatronics, and makeup effects of iconic artist Stan Winston, discusses translating the visions of a lot of wonderful minds and living up to what director Jon Favreau, the actors and other artists imagined. He also describes how they made one version of the upper portion of each suit, two of Mickey Rourke’s Whiplash suits, a Drone and the autopsy body for the film.
Similarly, Character Designer Joyner tells us that the best part of his job is seeing the work come to life. He also warns fans to not assume that the Iron Man suit is the same as the first one, because although it may look similar, "everything is different except the helmet on this character." He also calls the Suitcase Suit the most involved and the most rewarding. The creation of it was so secret that he had to keep the artwork hidden during production.
Merrit, who showed us the Autopsy Suit, talks about how it’s design was built upon the work Lucasfilm’s ILM (Industrial Light and Magic) department did on the first film and then describes how they built a real-life version of the computer-generated model using the original boots from the first movie.