Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige was initially worried about pitching a female-led Marvel Cinematic Universe project. According to Hulk star Mark Ruffalo, the studio boss feared he could lose his job. This all went down when the first Avengers movie hit theaters in 2012. Five years later, DC and Warner Bros. beat Marvel to the punch with Wonder Woman, which was a box office smash. Captain Marvel followed in 2019 and now fans are looking forward to the standalone Black Widow movie. A lot has changed in eight years.
In a new interview, Mark Ruffalo spoke about Kevin Feige's determination to diversify the MCU. While one wouldn't have thought it would have been that hard to do, there were some uphill battles that took place behind-the-scenes, which Ruffalo learned about first hand from Feige. The Marvel Studios boss can do no wrong these days, but he initially feared that pitching a female-led movie would cost him his job. Ruffalo explains.
"When we did the first Avengers, Kevin Feige told me, 'Listen, I might not be here tomorrow. Ike [Isaac Perlmutter, Disney's largest shareholder at the time] does not believe that anyone will go to a female-starring superhero movie. So if I am still here tomorrow, you will know that I won that battle.'"
Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel have proven that comic book fans will go to theaters to see a movie starring strong female characters. Wonder Woman 1984 and Black Widow are two of the most anticipated movies of 2019. And while DC and Warner Bros. may have been the first, Marvel is going out of their way to make sure they are more inclusive than anybody else out there today. Mark Ruffalo had this to say about Kevin Feige's vision.
"He changed the whole Marvel universe. We now have a gay superhero on the way, we have black superheroes, we have female superheroes... No other studio is being that inclusive on that level."
Black Panther and Captain Marvel were two of the studio's biggest standalone hits. Both movies are receiving sequels, which are currently in development, along with a ton of other MCU projects across the big and small screen. Kevin Feige is one of the busiest people in the entertainment industry and he's looking to get even busier as he looks toward the future with a mystery Star Wars project.
Black Widow hits theaters in May, finally giving MCU fans the standalone Natasha Romanoff movie they've been asking for. Eternals will open later this year, which will provide the MCU with its first-ever openly gay superhero. There's a lot going on in the MCU and it will continue to evolve and change with each new movie or TV show that it puts out in the future. The interview with Mark Ruffalo was originally conducted by The Independent U.K.