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No Audi R8s harmed in making of 'Iron Man 3'

| Thursday, May 16, 2013, 7:00 p.m.

“Iron Man 3” is nearing the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office, but that doesn't mean it's any easier to see a perfectly good Audi R8 e-tron go crashing into the sea.

It's just part of billionaire Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) losing everything in brilliant fashion.

His beautiful Malibu house goes kaboom because of an attack by the terrorist villain called The Mandarin. That includes Stark's prototype Audi R8 e-tron, seen charging inside the house at the time of the attack.

First, you see the car rattling around. Then, director Shane Black seemed intent on highlighting the R8 falling into the ocean with the mansion in the fiery scene. The car-maker, which has been a partner in each of the films, understood the need to show the car's demise.

Not to worry. As fate would have it, there are plenty more Audis for Stark to have, including an Audi A8 L which Stark takes from the baddie Savin (James Badge Dale) after dispatching him.

More on the bright side: The car that was destroyed in the original explosion was, like the destroyed house, a digital effect.

“I can honestly say no R8s were harmed in making the film,” says Sabouni.

Bryan Alexander is a staff writer for USA Today.

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