Hot on the heels of the news that Jessica Chastain won’t be joining ‘Iron Man 3′ due to scheduling issuesVariety report that Rebecca Hall (The Town, The Prestige) may take the part of the female lead instead. Hall would play a scientist who plays a pivotal role in the creation of a nanotechnology, known as Extremis, that winds up being sold to terrorists. The role is said to be that of a scientist that is the intellectual equal of Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark. Marvel Studios and Walt Disney Pictures have been putting together a truly stellar cast for ‘Iron Man 3,′ with Ben Kingsley, Andy Lau and Guy Pearce all linked to roles in the film.

The plot for ‘Iron Man 3′ is said to borrow elements from Warren Ellis’ six-issue ‘Iron Man: Extremis’ story arc, which also heavily influenced the first ‘Iron Man’ flick. It focuses heavily on the spread of a virus through nanotechnology. Returning from ‘Iron Man 3′ are Robert Downey Jr as Tony Starks/Iron Man, Don Cheadle as Lt. Col. James ‘Rhodey’ Rhodes/War Machine, and Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Pots. ’Iron Man 3′ will be directed by Shane Black, who is co-writing the script with Drew Pierce. The first ‘Iron Man’ earned $585 million worldwide, while the sequel generated $624 million – big chee$e!  ’Iron Man 3′ opens in cinemas May 3rd, 2013.  Expect casting confirmation soon as the film is set to start filming later this month.