Jacek was given strict orders not to talk to me, not to be around me, not to bother me at all during Robert Downey Jr’s interview with Jon Stewart last night on The Daily Show. RDJ is the best. Jon Stewart is the best. And together? With just a table separating them? Did your heart explode?

At the movies, Iron Man is Marvel’s most lucrative superhero right now. He will make a LOT of money for them this weekend. And so the question everyone’s asking is... will RDJ be back as Tony Stark? Stewart asked him that too. RDJ’s response?

“I don’t know. I had a long contract with them and now we're gonna renegotiate." And then he winked.

I love that he didn’t give some bullsh-t answer about it being the right direction for the character and for him stretching as an actor, etc. As always, RDJ was honest. Basically -- yeah, I’ll do it, but they’re going to have to pay me.

His deal for The Avengers ended up paying him $50 million.

How high will the number have to be to get him back for more? RDJ has been pretty neutral about whether or not they’ll be able to work something out. No indications either way. When he confirmed to GQ that it was indeed $50 for The Avengers though, he intimated that the studio wasn’t exactly thrilled:

"(Yeah, it was $50 million.) Isn't that crazy? They're so pissed. I can't believe it. I'm what's known as 'a strategic cost.'"

There’s no way he’s going to want to stop being a “strategic cost”. And if they weren’t happy about it last time, how happy would they be about it next time when he’d probably ask for more? Studios always claim that it costs more and more to make and market movies. If they had the option, they’d give up the “strategic cost” and save it for themselves. But...how do you give up Robert Downey Jr aka the one and only Tony Stark?!?

Is Robert Downey Jr/Tony Stark replaceable?

At some point, you know, they’ll reboot it. Sony only waited 5 years for Spider-Man. So it’s inevitable, I suppose. Although Tobey Maguire was MUCH less...inextricable (can we say that here?)...with the Peter Parker identity than Robert Downey Jr is with Tony Stark. But will his price tag necessitate a quicker transition? And would you accept a quick transition? How much time would have to pass before you’re willing to deal with a new Tony Stark?

Speaking of money matters, RDJ rang the opening bell at the NYSE yesterday.