The "Iron Man" (and its sequel) director and star are expected to work together on the DreamWorks tentpole "Cowboys & Aliens," based on the Platinum Studios Comics release from writers Fred Van Lente and Andrew Foley.
Downey's attachement to the DreamWorks production is long-standing, dating back to last summer. At the time, "Iron Man" scribes Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby were working on the script.
Now, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Favreau is coming on board to make "Cowboys & Aliens" his next directing project after locking "Iron Man 2." In its current incarnation, "Cowboys & Aliens" has been scripted by ubiquitous "Star Trek" scribes Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, plus "Lost" co-creator Damon Lindelof.
The premise is deceptively high-concept: In mid-1800s Arizona, the conflict between cowboys and Native Americans is interrupted by an alien invasion.
"Cowboys & Aliens" was one of the projects DreamWorks held onto after leaving its deal with Paramount last year. Paramount still has an option to co-distribute along with Disney. The film will be produced by Imagine Entertainment and Platinum, with Imagine's involvement implying a co-financing role for Universal.
The trade speculates that DreamWorks would want "Cowboys & Aliens" as a summer 2011 release.
It's unclear how that would impact Favreau's degree of involvement in Marvel's 2012 "Avengers" film, a project he's been tapped to executive produce at the very least.