Rebecca Hall signed up for a "better part" than she ended up with in 'Iron Man 3'.

Rebecca Hall

Rebecca Hall

The 37-year-old actress portrayed Maya Hansen in the 2013 superhero sequel and she's admitted the scientist, who was a jilted lover of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) was supposed to have created regenerative treatment Extremis for good before heading down a darker path, only to realise the error of her ways.

She explained to Collider: "She was meant to be a sort of - oh god, I can't even remember properly now.

"In the first script that I read she was in it to the end and she created whatever that serum-y thing was and then she sort of saved it by doing an act of martyrdom at the end and there was a whole like, she was evil but then she tries to be good at the end situation. It was a better part."

The film's director, Shane Black, has previously suggested he'd planned for Rebecca to be the movie's main villain, but was told there were concerns from Marvel Entertainment that spin-off toys wouldn't sell well with a female character.

He said: "There was an early draft of 'Iron Man 3' where we had an inkling of a problem. Which is that we had a female character who was the villain in the draft.

"We had finished the script and we were given a no-holds-barred memo saying that cannot stand and we've changed our minds because, after consulting, we've decided that toy won't sell as well if it's a female. So, we had to change the entire script because of toy making."

Shane insisted at the time he didn't know who had sent the memo but stressed current Marvel boss Kevin Feige is "the guy who gets it right".