If there is one person on Earth that should take offense to the comments made by Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, Ken Loach, and others about the fact that Marvel films are not “cinema” and are just “theme parks,” then it’s likely going to be Mr. Disney himself, Bob Iger. The CEO of the Mouse House is ultimately the guy at the top of the theme park food chain and the man who co-signs every film project made at Disney. And so it should be no surprise that he has some very strong opinions about what certain auteur filmmakers are saying about his products.
Iger started by saying that Scorsese and Coppola are great filmmakers that have made amazing films, something that can’t be disputed by anyone. However, he thinks that the words used to describe Marvel films, particularly coming from Coppola, is a bit harsh.
“But when Francis uses the words ‘those films are despicable,’ I’d reserve the word ‘despicable’ for someone who had committed mass murder,” Iger explained.
He continued by saying that he “doesn’t get what they’re criticizing us for” considering that Disney (and thus Marvel) are making films that millions of people are going to the theaters to watch and are ultimately enjoying (if box office receipts are any indication).
“I’m puzzled by it,” Iger said. “If they want to bitch about movies it’s certainly their right. It seems so disrespectful to all the people who work on those films who are working just as hard as the people who are working on their films and are putting their creative souls on the line just like they are.”
And this is where Iger might have taken a bridge too far with his reasoning and comments. Well, let’s just say that we can imagine there being quite a few cinephiles that take offense to the conclusion that Iger makes.
He said, “Are you telling me that Ryan Coogler making ‘Black Panther’ is doing something that somehow or another is less than anything Marty Scorsese or Francis Ford Coppola have ever done on any one of their movies? Come on.”
That might be a quote that ignites a bit of fury in some film fans. We’ll have to wait and see.