Shane Black Will Indeed Direct (and Possibly Write) Iron Man 3

After first surfacing as a candidate to write and direct Marvel’s “Iron Man 3″ after the first two installment’s director Jon Favreau left the project, Marvel and Black are now officially in the “final negotiations” stage of handling the franchise over to Black.

Shane Black started his career as an actor (you may remember him as the tall, skinny, bespectacled dude in “Predator”) before hitting it big as a screenwriter with the “Lethal Weapon” franchise. (His script for the first “Lethal Weapon” is still legendary.) After a string of screenwriting hits and big paydays (“The Last Boy Scout”, “The Long Kiss Goodnight”), Black made his directorial debut with 2005’s Detective noir “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”, which also happened to star Val Kilmer and Black’s new leading man, Robert Downey Jr..

So “Iron Man 3″ will be a reunion of sorts for Black and Downey, and I imagine it might be safe to say that Downey had some input into choosing Black as director. After all, you can switch directors and even Rhodey, but you can’t switch Tony Stark.

Of course, this probably means that Black is putting his “Doc Savage” project on the back burner, what with Marvel expected to release “Iron Man 3″ into theaters by May 3, 2013. It’s not clear yet if Black will also write the script, but given his awesome ways with dialogue, here’s hoping that’s the case.