This time around, the short film features Marvel Comics character Riri Williams — the teenage girl who briefly served as the new Iron Man before becoming the armored superhero Ironheart — as she studies at MIT, assembles her armored suit, and takes it for a test flight to deliver admissions letters.
Titled “Not all heroes wear capes — but some carry tubes (Pi Day 2017),” the video references MIT’s tradition of sending out the admissions letters in tubes, and delivering them on March 14, a date also known as Pi Day.
In the video, MIT student Ayomide F. takes on the role of Williams, who was introduced in the May 2016 issue of Invincible Iron Man. A 15-year-old engineering prodigy attending MIT, Williams built her own suit of Iron Man armor from equipment she stole around campus and caught Tony Stark’s eye after apprehending a pair of escaped inmates while wearing the armor. In Marvel Comics lore, she eventually filled in for Tony when he became sick and took the name Ironheart as her superhero nickname.
“Marvel uses MIT in their comic, so we figured, given we are MIT, it would be OK,” said Stu Schmill, MIT’s dean of admissions and student financial services, in an interview with The Boston Globe about Ironheart’s appearance in this year’s video.
Marvel Comics writer Brian Bendis, who created the character of Williams with artist Stefano Caselli, praised the video on Twitter.
MIT admissions made their own riri Williams movie!! I did not know about this. I’m plotzing! Plotzing, jerry! https://t.co/0eia7j0hxV
— BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (@BRIANMBENDIS) March 8, 2017
With a superhero cameo this year and BB-8 delivering admissions letters in 2016’s video, MIT has already raised the bar pretty high. It will be interesting to see who makes an appearance in next year’s admissions announcement.