Comicsbeat is reporting that Disney directed Iron Man 3 screenwriters Shane Black and Drew Pearce away from the seminal Demon In A Bottle storyline. Pearce stated:
I think we were just told by the studio that we should probably paint Tony Stark as being kind of an industrialist and a crazy guy, or even a bad guy at some points, but the Demon In A Bottle stuff of him being an alcoholic wouldn’t really fly.
Translation: Disney is okay with Tony Stark being portrayed as an alcoholic, womanizing egomaniac, so long as those traits are viewed as endearing and he doesn't suffer any negative consequences for it.
Furthermore, beyond the obvious pro-substance abuse policy Disney forced onto the writers, there is a more subtle and nefarious commentary on the place of the 1% in our society. As The Beat pointed out; “Plus, you know, multimillionaire industrialist job creators who love to party are good for the economy.” Tony Stark, the crazy bad guy is the hero of this story. Why can’t Captain America be a drunk? The Hulk? Black Widdow? I’ll tell you; because they are not rich.
What else is there to take away from Disney being ok with Stark’s attitude? Stark, who inherited much of his wealth and skill from his father, is permitted to be the drunken protagonist of a Disney movie. Roll that around a bit. Stark drinks during the day and then “drives” his home made battle armor over a populated city to enforce justice based on authority he gave himself. Hey, at least he's actually in the suit. It's more personal than a drone.
Well played Disney, well played indeed.