Both Iron Man armors revealed

Back on April 11, Paramount Pictures released this massively cool photo of the original old-school armor suit from next summer’s comic book adaptation of Iron Man.

Yesterday, director Jon Favreau gave Entertainment Weekly this sneak peak of the more advanced version of the suit worn later in the film by gazillionaire military contractor Tony Stark, who uses his own creations to battle international evils of every variety.

The man in the suit will be played — in a truly inspired bit of out-of-nowhere casting — by Robert Downey, Jr.

USA Today published this excellent interview with Downey about the role, and there’s also a photo of the way-in-shape actor as Stark out of the armor.

(But what’s that glowing thing on his chest? Favreau tells you himself on his MySpace blog.)

The suits in the film are being built by Stan Winston, whose creations include everything from the best movie monster ever — the Predator — to Edward Scissorhands.

The cast rocks from the top on down. Terrence Howard is Jim Rhodes, Stark’s best friend and pilot. Gwyneth Paltrow is Stark’s spectacularly named assistant, Pepper Potts. (I’m sure the name sounded great when they made it up in the ’60s, and I think it’s really cool that they’re keeping it for the movie.)

And if that’s not enough to knock your iron socks off, the incomparable Jeff Bridges is on board as the film’s villain, Obadiah Stone.

I expect Iron Man to be a fun, action-packed romp filled with great performances and cool technology.

Add this to the Hulk revamp starring Ed Norton and the return of Christian Bale’s Batman in The Dark Knight, and I think we’re looking at one of the best superhero movie summers of all time.

Robert Downey, Jr. hopes his armor is air-conditioned as well as the theater near you when Iron Man makes its debut on May 2, 2008.