As if yesterday’s news that Ike Perlmutter would now be overseeing Marvel Television as opposed to Marvel Studios wasn’t enough, news of more changes at Marvel Studios are starting to make their way out – and they’re huge. Murmurings started making their way online yesterday afternoon about the Marvel Creative Committee coming to an end at Marvel Studios, but it has officially been confirmed as of today. For many fans, this may seem like nothing, but this is a huge change. Perhaps not as huge as Feige being free of Perlmutter’s ruling, but enough of a change that’ll definitely impact the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we’ve come to know it.
It’s no secret to MCU fans that, while the Marvel-way has proven successful, it’s not always satisfying for those involved with the studio. The MCU has a story planned out, a story that has to connect not only between the films, but also between the television shows, and because of this that doesn’t always allow for a lot of creative control from those overseeing the projects.
When director Patty Jenkins (who is now, ironically, directing Wonder Woman for WB) was hired for Thor: The Dark World, only to quit shortly after, it was evident there were issues with the production. And while Jenkins later went on to say that the split was amicable, and that she was open to working with Marvel again, that didn’t, there’s one other director that had less than fond memories of working with Marvel – director Alan Taylor. Taylor stepped in for Jenkins shortly after she exited Thor: The Dark World, and while the production went on as planned, Taylor wasn’t shy about his feelings about working on the film in the end.
“I’ve done two [blockbuster movies; the other being this week’s ‘Terminator Genisys’] and I’ve learned that you don’t make a $170 million movie with someone else’s money and not have to collaborate a lot,” Taylor told Uproxx. “The Marvel experience was particularly wrenching because I was sort of given absolute freedom while we were shooting, and then in post it turned into a different movie. So, that is something I hope never to repeat and don’t wish upon anybody else.” (Source.)
Taylor isn’t the only director to have experienced issues with Marvel over creative control. Director Edgar Wright, who’d spent years developing Ant-Man for Marvel Studios, abruptly left the project last summer, leaving Marvel to scramble to find a director. The reason for his exit? Good ‘ol creative differences. The script that he’d co-written with Joe Cornish had undergone many rewrites from the Marvel Creative Committee and he didn’t agree with them.
So what was the creative committee exactly? Devin from Birth. Movie. Death. broke down just who they were, and what they did.
What was the Creative Committee? It was a group of people who would gives notes and thoughts on Marvel productions as they made their way from script to screen.
Some of the guys on the committee included Alan Fine, who came with Perlmutter to Marvel through Toy Biz, Brian Michael Bendis, who is a prolific Marvel Comics writer, Dan Buckley, publisher of Marvel Comics and Joe Quesada, former editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics and the current Chief Creative Officer of Marvel Enterprises.
The Creative Committee played a huge part in the MCU up ’til now, both on the films, as well as the television shows – at least the Netflix shows. Quesada has worked on the Netflix shows, even creating the concept poster that was released during NYCC last year for Daredevil, and Bendis has talked about visiting the writers room for Jessica Jones which recently wrapped production.
Given how much of an influence they’ve had on the MCU, it’ll be interesting to see if Perlmutter decides to create a version of the Creative Committee for Marvel Television now that he’s overseeing that department.
As for the film side of things, there are three people involved in the creative decisions, and one of them happens to be Victoria Alonso, who has been very vocal about wanting more of a female presence in the MCU.
Key creative decisions are now being made by Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito and Victoria Alonso alone. Any drag or difficulty caused by the Creative Committee is over, and any skinflint choices and bizarre decisions made by Ike are out of the way (trivia: I understand the reason there are no Black Widow toys is specifically because Ike, with a background in toys, believes girl toys do not sell and thus vetoed them again and again. One guy was the roadblock.), and now we’re going to see Marvel Studios operating at full power as it goes into Phase Three.
As Devin points on in his article, it is very unlikely that we’ll see the effects of the loss of the Creative Committee until perhaps late into Phase Three as Captain America: Civil War recently wrapped and Doctor Strange is gearing up for production in November. Still, big changes are coming to the MCU and it’s rather exciting.