|Appeared in|| Iron Man 3|
All Hail the King
- "Ladies, children, sheep... Some people call me a terrorist, I consider myself a teacher. Lesson number one: Heroes - there is no such thing."
- ―Trevor Slattery, under the guise of The Mandarin[src]
According to his fictional past, the Mandarin's true name is unknown. He studied South American insurgency, Sun Tzu and other ancient warfare tactics. He later became an intelligence field officer, but due to witnessing the atrocities of the world, it drove him mad. He was also an expert in global intelligence and knew how to use the media to his benefit. He has a great hatred for America and used it to unify his group, the Ten Rings, who shared his hatred.
In actual fact, he is a British stage actor named Trevor Slattery. Trevor was forced to live on the streets after his drug habit bankrupted him, but Aldrich Killian came to him and offered him a new life in exchange for pretending to be "the Mandarin" for the cameras.
"The Mandarin" is the sinister head of the terrorist organization known as The Ten Rings, from which all the acts of extreme terrorism plaguing the world appear to emanate. Although he is reclusive, "The Mandarin" wields great power and makes his presence known by striking fear in the government and the populace through his brazen plans of attack. It is revealed, however, that the terrorist known as "The Mandarin" is nothing more than a front created by Aldrich Killian, as a means of covering the latter's illegal activities. Tony later found Trevor watching a sports game and enjoying himself, causing Trevor to reveal the truth to Tony as well as all of the perks he got for playing the Mandarin. After escaping and meeting up with James Rhodes, Tony confronts Trevor along with Rhodes and forces Trevor to reveal where Aldrich Killian was going. With no other means of transportation, Tony and Rhodes took the lovely speedboat Killian had given to Trevor as part of his payment.
In the final battle between Killian and Tony, Killian reveals having masterminded the events that would lead to the attack on Tony's residence as well as Pepper's abduction. After the events in which Killian was killed, Trevor was apprehended by the authorities for assisting Killian's organization as well as his portrayal of the supposed terrorist leader. However, as he was being led through the crowds, many were cheering for him. Trevor seemed happy for finally being recognized for just being himself at last.
- "Bloody hell, it's not exactly the Ritz, is it."
- ―Trevor Slattery on Seagate Prison[src]
Slattery has been talking with a documentary filmmaker, Jackson Norriss, to chronicle the events of the Mandarin situation. Norriss, trying to learn more about Slattery personally, recounts his past from his first casting as a child as well as starring in a failed CBS pilot for an 80's style crime show called Caged Heat. Norriss eventually informs Slattery that his portrayal has angered some people, including the actual Ten Rings terrorist group, which Slattery did not know existed. Norriss tells him the history of the Mandarin and the terrorist group, before killing the guards and Herman, and revealing that he is actually a member of the group. The real reason for Norriss interviewing Slattery is to break him out of prison so he can meet the actual Mandarin. Hearing this, Slattery still has no idea the full ramifications of him acting as the Mandarin.
The terrorist who was widely known as "The Mandarin" (as portrayed by Trevor Slattery) surrounded himself with Chinese iconography, dragons, and the symbols of warlords. He used many other warrior motifs and symbols and twisted them for his own use, such as Asian royal robes, a long beard, samurai hair, a Captain America shield tattoo with the "A" for "anarchy" on the back of his neck. He also wanted to teach the world lessons, such as the fact that there was no such thing as heroes. Aldrich Killian described this idealized image of "The Mandarin" as being inspired by real life terrorists.
- Tony Stark/Iron Man- Enemy.
- James Rhodes/Iron Patriot - Enemy.
- Aldrich Killian - Employer; deceased.
- Eric Savin - Ally; deceased.
- Herman - Fellow inmate and "butler".
- Fletcher Heggs - Fellow inmate and defender.
- White Power Dave - Fellow inmate and enemy.
- Jackson Norriss - Enemy and kidnapper.
- The Mandarin - Enemy.
- Justin Hammer - Fellow inmate and rival.
- Marvel Cinematic Universe (2 films)
Behind the scenes
Kevin Feige on the character adaptation of The Mandarin in Iron Man 3
- This version of The Mandarin will not follow that same backstory, said Kevin Feige, the president of Marvel Studios. Don’t expect aliens, even though The Avengers and Thor opened up this unified cinematic world to the presence of extra-terrestrials. However, we have yet to see the real Mandarin, so the true Mandarin may still have his cosmic rings.
- Iron Man 3 will be more about a clash of technology, Feige says and those who have been paying close attention to the previous two films know that The Ten Rings is a term for the terrorist group that kidnapped Tony Stark in the first movie, and gave the villain Whiplash some assistance in the sequel.
- In that way, The Mandarin (who for a time was going to be the main villain in the first film) has been a part of the Iron Man series from the beginning, albeit as the off-screen manipulator. However, he is NOT Slattery nor Killian.
- “A lot of this movie is about characters going back into the shadows for various reasons and characters who have been in the shadows coming out and into the light for the first time,” Feige says. “It is Tony who, for various reasons, finds himself receding into the darkness. I don’t mean emotional darkness, I mean literally ducking out of the spotlight. And we’ll see other characters stepping up who have pulled strings from the background, starting to show their hand.”
- Kingsley is not, of course, Chinese, but Feige says they wanted to blur the background of this version of The Mandarin. “It’s less about his specific ethnicity than the symbolism of various cultures and iconography that he perverts for his own end,” Feige says. From his samurai hair, to his royal robe, to his bin Laden-esque beard, and the AK-47 he keeps at his side, Kingsley’s interpretation is a hodgepodge of various warrior motifs. This is a sign that he is not the true Mandarin. It is implied that the real Mandarin is Asian.
- Hasbro released a Mandarin figure for Iron Man.
- In an alternate final scene, Slattery freed himself using the Extremis he found in the cupboard Stark closed him up in, and joined "his" men at the harbor. There, he started threatening Stark and Rhodey, but his organism rejected Extremis and he exploded, thus unwillingly helping the two heroes escape from Extremis soldiers.