Vanity Fair/Jason Bell(LOS ANGELES) — The 10-year rise of Marvel Studios is tracked in a new, superhero-stacked issue of Vanity Fair.
The feature story uses four special covers featuring many of its heroes — including Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man and Chris Evans’ Captain America — to trace the history of the comics offshoot that became a blockbuster producing powerhouse.
Back in 2008, Iron Man was actually considered a long-shot. Jabbed as a second-tier hero by some, Downey’s performance — and the Jon Favreau-directed movie’s performance in theaters — laid the tracks for Marvel Cinematic Universe, which is now 17 movies deep, turning other one-time long shots like the Guardians of the Galaxy and Doctor Strange into bonafide blockbuster stars.
Much of that success is credited to Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, who started as an assistant on 20th Century Fox’s X-Men, in 2000. He rose through the ranks, and eventually had the vision to set the interconnected MCU in motion.
Recently, there was a massive class picture of sorts taken, with 83 of the MCU’s stars — from Vin Diesel, the voice of Groot, to Angela Bassett, yet to be seen as Chadwick Black Panther Boseman’s mom in that upcoming film.
Jon Favreau, who directed two Iron Man movies and recently appeared again as Happy Hogan in Spider Man: Homecoming, recalled to Vanity Fair: “[U]s old-timers — me and Robert and Gwyneth [Paltrow] and Kevin…We were emotional…thinking about how precarious it all felt in the beginning.”
All the Marvel characters will be seen in 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, and some could meet their end in 2019, in Avengers 4. That film, “bring things you’ve never seen in superhero films: a finale,” teases Feige. “There will be two distinct periods. Everything before Avengers 4 and everything after.”
Marvel is owned by Disney, parent company of ABC News.
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