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'Iron Man' boy seeks costume career

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Media captionArchie Whitehead is hoping for a career in designing for films

A teenager whose self-made Iron Man suit became an online hit has said the experience has inspired him to undertake a career in costume.

Archie Whitehead, 17, from Welwyn Garden City, spent 300 hours making the suit for his school project.

He said he had received offers from US fans to buy his suit, but said his main aim was to go to university and improve his craft.

"I would really love to do this as a career," said the Iron Man fanatic.

"I know the majority of the studios are based in America, so whether or not I could go there, we'll see."

'Just amazed'

After completing the costume, made mostly of glass fibre and foam, photos of it were posted online and they have been shared by people on social networks around the globe.

Alongside the offers to buy the suit, movie fans have also emailed him to see if he would make them bespoke Iron Man costumes - a decision, he said, he would make after his exams.

"Everyone at school calls me Tony - Tony Stark - the Iron Man. Everyone's just amazed.

"Last year my tech teacher said, 'you come up with an idea' and I didn't really want to make a table, so I thought, 'why not?'.

"I taught myself the majority of this - Google helped a lot. I have a steady hand so cutting the parts out is quite easy."

Archie, who said his suit cost about £2,000 in material and labour costs, said he was already on to his next project - making a Mark 42 version of the armoured suit seen in the latest Iron Man 3 movie.

"I'd like to build a full resin suit with parts that move and lights that are interactive," he said.

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