I just watched Iron Man 3. The whole story takes place during Christmas. It gives a feeling that we are watching a movie in the holiday season. I found it a little awkward because I was watching a Summer movie.

So what was the original plan? Was it planned as a summer movie or a holiday season movie?

  • Same question came in my mind too.
    – Ankit Sharma
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 8:16

2 Answers 2


Director/writer Shane Black has a thing for Christmas, e.g.

take place during the Christmas season.

In this inteview he explains:

If you're doing something on an interesting scale that involves a whole universe of characters, one way to unite them is to have them all undergo a common experience, and there's something in Christmas that unites everybody, it sets a stage within a stage.

Also, there's something just pleasing about it to me. We did 'Lethal Weapon' back in ’87 at Christmas and Joel Silver liked it so much he put 'Die Hard' at Christmas. There’s fun to that. It’s a time of reckoning for people.


I think it’s just a universal leveler. An almost magical backdrop that invites a hush, momentary time-out in people’s lives.

To have to dig for bits of Christmas, and find that magic in the midst of the tumult of an action film, has a real psychological resonance for me.

We actually started talking about this as ‘A Christmas Carol’ episode of Iron Man. Certain characters in Iron Man 3 are analogous to different ghosts from the Dickens tale.

So, setting Iron Man 3 at Christmas time wasn't tied to the release date.

  • +1 Wow, very insightful answer. So it was actually Shane Black and Lethal Weapon that were the inspriation for THE Christmas action movie of all time (Die Hard, of course). Didn't know Last Boy Scout took place on Christmas, though (well, who notices that in all-year-sunny L.A.), the only Christmas reference I can remember from it would be "Satan Claus".
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 11:48
  • Ironically, Die Hard was released in July.
    – Oliver_C
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 14:55
  • Associated with movies just so I could upvote this answer. Way to dig into the directors background to provide the actual thinking/reasoning for the setting.
    – Ryan
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 15:07
  • Well done, Oliver. I just watched Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and this prompted me to do the research which you have just posted - LOL.
    – Nobby
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 15:12
  • Oliver & Nobby, you both are great :) I mean it.
    – Ankit
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 15:55

A press release reported on by EW.com on October 18, 2010 states:

Disney, Paramount Pictures, and Marvel Studios have announced via press release that Iron Man 3 will be released in on May 3, 2013.

This suggests that Iron Man 3 was always intended to be a late spring tent-pole picture in keeping with the previous releases.

We can only speculate the reason behind the Christmas theme, but in my opinion the sense of conclusion to an over all arc spanning three films fits well with a story set at the end of the year; 'out with the old, in with the new' you might say.

Also, I believe that the events in The Avengers occurred in the summer, which would be recent enough for Tony's PTSD to be so crippling.

EDIT: I was planning to add a whole lot about Shane Black's predeliction for xmas in his stories - but Oliver C. has done the grunt work for me - see his answer above.

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