Last week, we learned that Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios would no longer fall under the Marvel Entertainment banner or CEO Ike Perlmutter and instead answer to Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn. It was also revealed that the Marvel Creative Committee, which consulted on the shaping of the Marvel Cinematic Universe by offering notes and keeping up with the continuity, had been disbanded. While “several years of frustration” between Feige and Perlmutter has been cited as the cause of these changes, now even more specific reasons for the emancipation have been uncovered, including how the House of Mouse viewed Marvel’s recent cinematic successes (or lack there of).
According to Bleeding Cool, one log on the fire that finally caused this whole situation to blow up was the “failure” of ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ in Disney’s eyes. Though Joss Whedon’s second film in the MCU wasn’t as strong as the first one, it was still okay. But that wasn’t enough for Disney since they wanted better reviews and more money rather than a film that was just okay. As a result, the movie was dubbed a failure and Kevin Feige used that as leverage to push out Perlmutter.
The Hollywood Reporter then chimed in with their sources that say that Feige almost walked away as the President of Marvel Studios over the budget of ‘Captain America: Civil War.’ The famously frugal Perlmutter wanted to scale back, but considering that the film involves a huge cast of Avengers in addition to the regular players in Cap’s films, things were going to cost a bit more. This didn’t sit well with the Marvel Studios head, so apparently he was ready to quit over it. Obviously, Disney CEO Bob Iger definitely didn’t want that since Feige has earned the company billions with his vision of the MCU. That’s partially why Iger went through this restructuring that would loosen the reins a bit financially.
However on the flip side, Bleeding Cool later released another report saying that the Marvel Creative Committee could have saved Marvel Studios and Disney some money if Feige had just taken their notes on ‘Age of Ultron.’ Their contributions could have saved the company from extensive and expensive reshoots. But since Feige has the final say whether the suggestions made by the caretakers of the brand are used, it appears that the exec just ignored the things that he didn’t want to hear. So when it came to separate from Marvel Entertainment, Feige probably motioned to have the group disbanded so that Marvel Studios wouldn’t be seen second-guessing itself. But in Disney’s eyes, Feige probably spun the ‘Age of Ultron’ situation (in addition to the infamous creative differences with Edgar Wright over ‘Ant-Man’) in a way that it was the MCC and Perlmutter’s fault. Since that kept Feige happy and with the company, Disney probably had no problem disbanding the brain trust.
There’s a lot of information coming out of both sides and this likely isn’t the end of it. At the end of the day, hopefully the films released by Marvel Studios continue to as good as they have been or better. We’ll be sure to keep following this situation as events unfold, but until more comes to light, sound off with your thoughts in the comments about how the restructuring of Marvel Studios will affect Marvel Entertainment, Kevin Feige, or the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward.