COMIC REEL: Reformed Marvel Star Pardoned; Rumors on "Batman v. Superman" Stinger


Tony Stark knows all about cleaning up his act.

"Iron Man," "Avengers," and upcoming "Captain America: Civil War" star Robert Downey Jr., whose substance issues once made him considered to be a casting risk, has been officially pardoned for a 1996 drug conviction due to "exemplary behavior."

Now the highest-paid actor in Hollywood for his exploits playing the similarly rich and troubled playboy/billionaire/philanthropist Tony Stark, Downey Jr. served nearly a year's worth of jail time in 1999 for felony drug possession after being pulled over with heroin, cocaine, and a hand gun in his car, a crime which has been expunged from his record by California Governor Jerry Brown, who included RDJ among his year-end pardons.

"Since his release from custody, he has lived an honest and upright life, exhibited good moral character, and conducted himself as a law-abiding citizen," Brown said of Downey Jr. in the official release, which grants a "full and unconditional pardon" for the offense.

Always considered a standout dramatic talent, Downey Jr.'s checkered past was seen as an compelling wrinkle when he was originally cast in the first Hollywood movie under Marvel's full creative control, as it gave him something in common with the character that was perhaps most famous for being the most visible alcoholic in comics.

The reformed Marvel leading man's clemency comes at a serendipitous time, as his character will be fighting on the side of the US Government against the iconoclastic Captain America in next year's "Captain America: Civil War."

"Captain America: Civil War" hits theaters May 6, 2016


According to a rumor from Heroic Hollywood, the director could be planning to ape his sprawling opening "Watchmen" montage, which gave a feel for its vast world of superheroes, for the post-credit stinger to "BvS," setting up the first "Justice League" movie and various other DC superhero films.

Fans may fondly remember the "Watchmen" sequence as one of the movie's strongest, most original components, blending storytelling exposition with exciting, expansive teases of the world beyond what was seen onscreen. With Warner's ambitious plans for at least ten live-action DC Comics movies between now and 2020, a scene like the "Watchmen" one could whet appetites for "Wonder Woman," "Suicide Squad," "Batman," "Aquaman," "The Flash," "Cyborg," "Shazam," and, most importantly, "Justice League."

Post-credit "stinger" scenes have become a hotly anticipated part of comic book movies ever since Samuel L. Jackson showed up playing Nick Fury at the end of 2008's first "Iron Man," telling Tony Stark about an "Avengers Initiative," and telling audiences there were Marvel superheroes waiting to be teamed up with. Fans have come to expect the scenes as the connective tissue to movies' interconnected worlds, although they are also known for their brevity. By closing "Batman v. Superman" with a scene like the one that opened "Watchmen," Synder could set the cinematic world of DC superheros apart from their Marvel counterparts.

In other rumors, Latino-Review has another potentially spoilerific one regarding a past partner of Ben Affleck's Batman. Check the link for the full theory, which draws heavily on modern DC generational lore, and COULD support other rampant speculation...

Watch the latest TV trailer for "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice" below.

In theaters March 25, 2016


A new TV spot for the upcoming second season of "Agent Carter," starring Haley Atwell, debuted during ABC's Christmas NBA broadcast. Check out the trailer below.

It was also recently announced that "Agent Carter" season one co-star Lyndsy Fonseca, who played Peggy Carter's friend and confidant Angie Martinelli, will return for season two as a guest star in a dancing dream-sequence.

Airs January 19 on ABC


Can you tell them how to get to the Home Box Office street?

HBO recently released a trailer for its inaugural season as host of the beloved Children's Television Workshop series, "Sesame Street," starring all the old favorites in a new format as the show marches into its 46th year of production.

The premium cable channel and streaming on-demand service will carry new and classic episodes.

Available January 16

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