First Look At Iron Man 3's Mandarin

Sir Ben Kingsley, is that you...?

Iron Man 3 Day continues apace with EW unveiling the first look at Sir Ben Kingsley's Mandarin, the bad guy set to put Tony Stark through his paces over the course of the highly-anticipated threequel.

ben kingsley mandarin iron man 3

The character of The Mandarin was considered by many (including writer/director Shane Black) too racially insensitive to be portrayed on screen, but Marvel head honcho Kevin Feige has explained how Sir Ben is going to play the originally Oriental baddie: by not actually being Chinese.

“It’s less about his specific ethnicity than the symbolism of various cultures and iconography that he perverts for his own end,” Feige told EW.

As the hidden, shadowy manipulator whose helped The Ten Rings terrorists in the first film and aided Whiplash magically get to Monaco with a huge amount of very dangerous equipment get revenge against the man with the coolest beard in the Marvel universe (sorry Mr. Fury), it is only now that Mr. Stark's archenemy has let his presence become known.

To get a better feel for Madarin's dark look on life, remember that back in the Comic-Con footage Empire saw earlier this year, his lines were these: “Some people call me a terrorist. I consider myself a teacher,” and “Lesson number one: heroes – there is no such thing.”

With Sir Ben Kingsley going full bad guy again, fans can only hope he can be more Don from Sexy Beast than Gandhi from, um, Gandhi. Or, for that matter, Mizam from Prince Of Persia.

For a better look at what to expect from Iron Man 3, here are a few stills (and a poster) for you, as well as our Evolution Of Iron Man's Suits feature, which you can check out here.

{Iron Man 3 Teaser Poster}

Iron Man 3 also features Guy Pearce, Jon Favreau, Rebecca Hall, Don Cheadle, William Sadler, Stephanie Szostak, James Badge Dale and the voice of Paul Bettany. In a similar move to The Avengers earlier this year, the film arrives in the UK earlier than it does in America, with Brits getting their Iron Man hit on April 26 and those folk over the pond only able to see it on May 3.