American actor and director Jon Favreau has defended Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola following their damning criticism of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Having been drawn into a conversation about the rise of Marvel, Scorsese was asked if he had been swept away in the surge of recent films, to which he replied: “I tried, you know?” in an interview with Esquire Magazine. “But that’s not cinema.”
He added: “Honestly, the closest I can think of them, as well made as they are, with actors doing the best they can under the circumstances, is theme parks. It isn’t the cinema of human beings trying to convey emotional, psychological experiences to another human being.”
While some major Hollywood names have come forward to criticise Scorsese, acclaimed director Francis Ford Coppola has gone the other way and backed his colleague: “When Martin Scorsese says that the Marvel pictures are not cinema, he’s right because we expect to learn something from cinema, we expect to gain something, some enlightenment, some knowledge, some inspiration,” he said according to report in Agence France-Presse.
“I don’t know that anyone gets anything out of seeing the same movie over and over again.”
He continued, “Martin was kind when he said it’s not cinema. He didn’t say it’s despicable, which I just say it is.”
While the likes of James Gunn, Samuel L. Jackson and Taika Waititi have all laughed off the criticism, Favreau – who has worked on a handful of Marvel films himself – has defended the two iconic filmmakers: “These two guys are my heroes, and they have earned the right to express their opinions,” Favreau said in an interview with CNBC. “I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing if they didn’t carve the way. They served as a source of inspiration, you can go all the way back to [Favreau’s breakthrough film] Swingers.”
Favreau added: “They can express whatever opinion they like.”