More recently, Marvel Studios has been accused of losing its mojo due to the massive decline in the MCU’s profit margins. While filmmakers may be the first to blame, a new report suggests that the studio’s special effects policies are to blame for the superhero decline.
These claims have surfaced on several online forums, with many Marvel Studios leakers and fans speculating on just how tight the studio executives are on each movie. Victoria Alonso was fired as post-production and visual effects supervisor, fueling these rumors. These patterns stemmed from Marvel Studios’ intentional hiring of directors with little background in the field, which only made the previous news that the special effects house was overwhelmed by the MCU’s demands worse.
These allegations now have more formal support, as reporter Chris Lee sums up many of the issues on The Town podcast with Matthew Belloni. Lee said Marvel Studios “systematically selects directors from the Sundance Film Festival,” and singled out the hiring of Taika Waititi, Ryan Coogler and Chlo Zhao as clear examples. Without naming names, Lee referred to a conversation with Marvel Studios, which said Alonso told them, “They don’t direct movies. We direct movies,” which is why they simply don’t have control over what makes up most of these movies. Working VFX.
There is a rule in the selection of directors of Marvel Pictures. With the exception of Jon Favreau, James Gunn, and the Russo brothers, most didn’t have the proper background to deal with massive special effects budgets and sequences. In this sense, Lee compares the likes of Shang-Chi director Destin Daniel Clayton and James Cameron to apples and oranges, as the Avatar creator spent almost all of his career to help advance the field of visual effects.
Marvel Studios has had great success with this approach in the past. Movies like Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther were highly regarded by fans, but the MCU “isn’t as accessible as it used to be.” The MCU machine is hard to redesign as it took nearly a full decade to hit one big hit after another, but the box-office flop Ant-Man 3, a film made up almost entirely of blue-screen scenes, seemed like a turning point for the MCU Disney .
It’s no secret that Marvel Studios has a lot more content these days than it did five years ago, and with budgets swelled across the board, returning CEO Bob Iger wants to address all of that. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 seems to pass on all of these fronts, but maybe Nia DaCosta’s The Marvels could be burdened in the same way.