"I AM IRON MAN"
When Tony Stark went off script and made the announcement, it was a revelation. Many of our heroes protect and guard their secret identity with everything they have. But not Tony Stark! The playboy heir to the Stark Industries plays by his own rules.
For over a decade, Tony Stark has been one of the most important Avengers. Perhaps it was fitting to say goodbye to this incredible character in the same way he entered, by announcing to the world one last time “I am Iron Man”. To the saviour of Marvel and the saviour of the word, we salute you! And to celebrate one of the most important heroes in the MCU we decided we needed to make two unique versions of the Mark 50 as a collectible bust.
Here’s the story behind the bust and behind the Queen Studios Iron Man Mark 50.
From the Mark1 to Mark 85, the Iron Man Armour has gone through many iterations and improvements. In Avengers Infinity War, we were introduced to the Mark 50. The Mark 50 was the most advanced armour at the time, and was the first to use nanotechnology which was stored in the new and improved arc reactor. Before this armour, one of Tony’s greatest weaknesses was his ability to suit up quickly and join the action. But with the MK 50, all it took was a double-tap on the reactor and Tony would become Iron Man.
As well as giving Tony speed, the suit also had a whole host of other cool features courtesy of the nanotechnology. Although we couldn’t include all of these features in the bust, we've tried our best to include what we could in our original designs.
There were many aspects that we wanted to replicate. For example, the nanobooster wings were a new feature. These wings gave Stark more stability during flight and were completely unique to the MK50. Previously, he relied on hand-repuslors for stability, but these wings proved to be much better.
As well as wings, the new technology also allowed stark to manifest a full array of weapons. Unfortunately, with a collectible MK50 bust we couldn’t incorporate all of these features. But we could find a way to pay homage to them in one way or another. For example, after Thanos overpowered Doctor Strange, Iron Man launched several attacks with missiles, traps, repulses and battering rams. To incorporate this, into the bust, we created the concept for the base to look like the battering rams that he used to battle Thanos.
EARLY 3D RENDERED IMAGES
When released the 3D rendered images of the MK50 back in May 2019, we received a lot of positive feedback and suggestions from passionate Iron Man fans. For the last two years it has been our goal to build better collectibles, and this kind of feedback makes our work much more rewarding and in many ways much easier.
As Joseph pointed out in the picture above, the shoulder lines were too pronounced on the 3D render. This was something that we needed to change on the final bust.
At the same time, we’d like to thank Aston for his feedback. We adjusted the shape of the lights on the chest armour that weren’t quite movie accurate.
COMPLETING THE BUST
For Iron Man armour, the paint effect is crucial. However, nailing the right colour was difficult. In each scene, the different types of light affected how the armour looked, so there was no definitive colour. After much debate hours of comparing videos and images we finally found the colour that we could agree on to try and replicate. After some mixing and spraying, we finally got what we wanted, and so far, not too many complaints.
WHY A CLEAN VERSION AND A BATTLE DAMAGED VERSION?
At Queen Studios, we must have seen the Infinity War move over a hundred times or more combined. We’ve taken great inspiration from this movie, and despite having differences of opinion on many things, there was one thing we did all agree on. The suit looks awesome when it's damaged!
With all of us in agreement, we decided we wanted to make both versions so fans like us could decide on which one they wanted. So in addition to the standard MK50, we created a battle damaged version. Compared with the standard version, the lacquered surface of the battle damaged version is more matte. The head, chest and other parts all have irregular damaged areas which require much more intricate craftsmanship and painting.
WINGS VS NO WINGS
As we’ve mentioned, the Mark 50 has many new improvements, the nano-booster wings being just one. For this bust, we wanted to feature the wings, but we know not everyone has space, and not everyone will like it. In true Iron Man fashion we thought the best solution would be to make them practical and stylish. Each version of the MK50 comes with a pair of detachable wings, and also replaceable panelling. This means you can add them on, or remove them as you wish, without any gaps or holes.
THE LAST PIECE OF THE PUZZLE
The arc reactor is with no doubt the single most important piece of technology that Tony has created. With no arc reactor, there’s no Tony. With no Tony, well, who knows where we’d be. Like the movie, the arc reactor for this bust can be removed, but we've also added few extra features. The light itself can be controlled remotely, and has more than one setting.
THE FINAL BUST
In December 2019, we shared the final images of the Queen Studios Iron Man Mark 50 1:1 bust licensed by Marvel China. The response we’ve had has been incredible and we’re extremely proud of this collectible.
Finally, although our hero has gone, his spirit is forever. Tony Stark sacrificed himself to save the world, but we will never forget the man who announced "I AM IRON MAN".
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