Acclaimed film director Martin Scorsese has again been drawn into a conversation about the Marvel Cinematic Universe following his relenting criticism of the brand.
The superhero films have dominated box office in recent years and, when drawn into a conversation about the films, Scorsese dismissed Marvel’s importance by describing them as “theme parks” and insisting that they are “not cinema”.
After urging cinemas to take a stand and stop showing so many Marvel screenings, Scorsese was again asked to clarify his viewpoint in an interview with Entertainment Tonight at the Los Angeles premiere of his new three-and-a-half-hour gangster epic The Irishman.
Despite doubling down on his strong “theme park” comments, Scorsese did offer a slight backtrack on Marvel when he accepted that the pictures have their own unique artistry. “Well, look, the point is, in terms of this film, Netflix, theatres, what I’m talking about really are films that are made,” he said. “Let’s say a family wants to go to an amusement park, that’s a good thing, you know. And at themes and parks there’s these cinematic expressions. They’re a new art form. It’s something different from films that are shown normally in theatres, that’s all.”
Scorsese continued: “For them, my concern is losing the screens to massive theme park films, which I say again, they’re [their] own new art form. Cinema now is changing. We have so many venues, there are so many ways to make films. So enjoyable. Fine, go and it’s an event and it’s great to go to an event like an amusement park, but don’t crowd out Greta Gerwig and don’t crowd out Paul Thomas Anderson and Noah Baumbach and those people, just don’t, in terms of theaters.”