Did Stan Lee Cameo as Larry King in ‘Iron Man’? Fans Clear Up the Confusion

The films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe are each unique, but all of them have that undeniable feel of Marvel. There are great action sequences along with humor sprinkled in. One other element shared by many MCU movies was an appearance from Stan Lee. Lee appeared in a cameo role in most of the MCU films until he passed away.

There’s a bit of confusion online about one of Lee’s cameos in Iron Man 2 as a famous former talk show host. While some fans were left scratching their heads, others revealed the truth behind the cameo. 

The incredible career of Stan Lee

Stan Lee
Stan Lee | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

When it comes to comic books, few people were more influential than Lee. According to Biography, Lee created many classic Marvel characters. Some of the more prominent ones include Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, the Fantastic Four, and the X-Men.

Born in 1922 in New York City as Stan Lieber, Lee shortened his name for his writing career. He started at a company called Timely Comics. Lee’s first popular characters were the Fantastic Four. From there, he continued to write engaging copy for characters that resonated with mainstream comic book audiences. In 1972, Marvel promoted him to the role of publisher. 

Stan Lee’s cameo in the Marvel films

RELATED: Marvel Studios Executive Reveals the Future Plan for Stan Lee Cameos

As one of the most influential creators of the Marvel Comics universe, Lee held a special place in Marvel lore. That’s why producers of the films based on the characters he created asked him to make small cameos. While Marvel’s comic book characters were popular for years, in the 90s the company began to dip its toes in the cinematic waters by entering the film industry. 

In 2008, they kicked off the Marvel Cinematic Universe. There hadn’t been anything like this before – an interconnected series of movies that set up multiple franchises under one larger umbrella. It proved to be genius, as the MCU became the single most successful movie franchise of all time. Up until his death, Lee made a cameo in every MCU film. 

What some younger fans may not realize is that Lee’s cameos weren’t limited to the MCU. He also made appearances in the earlier X-Men and Spider-Man movies as well. Seeing as how he created those characters, the filmmakers behind those movies thought it was appropriate to include Lee in those as well. 

Lee’s cameos became a fun Easter Egg for fans who eventually started looking out for him in every Marvel film. 

Did Stan Lee cameo as Larry King in ‘Iron Man 2?’ 

Lee’s cameos in the pre-MCU Marvel movies were rather subtle. As the MCU launched, his presence became a bit more pronounced in the films. Take Iron Man 2, for example. A Reddit thread dedicated to discussing this cameo pointed out that Lee appears in a button-down shirt and suspenders, much like the late talk show host Larry King. Tony even refers to Lee by this name. 

One MCU fan pointed out that this wasn’t proof Lee was actually playing King. It may just have been a goof by Tony: 

“I don’t think he was canonically playing Larry King, but instead Tony referred to him or mistook him as such. Similar to how Tony refers to a lot of people by fictional or celebrity names.”

Another commenter pointed out that Lee is billed as “himself” in the credits, so he was in fact playing himself and not King. Lee sadly passed a few years ago, but one small comfort Marvel fans can take is knowing they can still look back at his hilarious cameos to remember him.