The debate about Marvel Studios movies and their merit in the current pantheon of film continues to rage, and everyone from Kevin Feige to Francis Ford Coppola to their cousins and assistants are being asked about how they feel about Martin Scorsese's comments. Now the drama is accelerating straight to the top of these film studios, as top executives are being forced to pick a side in the ongoing war between cinema and "not cinema" with Walt Disney Studios Co-Chairman Alan Horn weighing in.
While speaking at the Variety Business Managers Breakfast earlier this week, Horn publicly addressed the comments made by the Oscar-winning director.
“This is America — anybody can say what he or she chooses to say,” Horn explained. “If we are going to define the term motion picture, I would say we are certainly making them….when the director yells action people move around. To me…it’s a movie.”
“I don’t see them. I tried, you know? But that’s not cinema,” Scorsese told Empire. “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.”
The comments incited a wave of debate among fans, prompting every entertainment outlet across the web to ask everyone in Hollywood to take a stand. When pressed further on the issue, Scorsese doubled down on his comments while appearing at an event for the British Film Institute.
"The value of a film that’s like a theme park film, for example, the Marvel type pictures where the theaters become amusement parks, that’s a different experience,” he said. “As I was saying earlier, it's not cinema, it’s something else. Whether you go for that or not, it is something else and we shouldn’t be invaded by it. And so that’s a big issue, and we need the theater owners to step up for that to allow theaters to show films that are narrative films.”
Despite Scorsese's comments, Marvel's future is still looking bright. They have a lot of projects in the pipeline.
Black Widow is set to premiere on May 1, 2020, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in Fall of 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, Loki in Spring 2021, WandaVision in Spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, What If…? in Summer 2021, Hawkeye in Fall 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Disney+'s She-Hulk, Moon Knight, and Ms. Marvel don't have release dates, nor does the cinematic reboot of Blade or Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.