Now, when one of the true legends of cinema comes out and says something deeply controversial about the future of the movie industry, it's not too surprising for it to become news -- after all, 'respected figure says debate-opening thing' is exactly the kind of thing we tend to want to hear more about.
Sometimes, though, as has been the case with Steven Spielberg's recent comments about superhero movies, that initial story multiplies, with the responses of other key industry figures providing a whole lot of firewood for the debate to burn. After all, when you imply that superhero movies are eventually going to substantially fall out of favor, as Spielberg did -- "there will be a time when the superhero movie goes the way of the Western" -- it's not too surprising that there's some blowback. Y'see...
As It Turns Out, a Whole Lot of People Think Superhero Movies Are Doing Just Fine
With Marvel head honcho Kevin Feige having already spoken out about it, though...
"The Western lasted 40-50 years, and they still pop up occasionally...It's been, what, eight years since Iron Man 1, if we count that, which I do, as the beginning of our MCU? Maybe [the superhero genre] will only last another 42 years."
...it seems that we might be set to see a flood of Marvel stars joining in with his rebuttal.
Elizabeth 'Scarlet Witch' Olsen Just Made a Super Important Point
Specifically, when asked about Spielberg's sentiment -- if not necessarily his exact comments -- while speaking to USA Today, she argued that:
"It’s not a make-or-break thing but obviously I don’t think they’re going to go away...I mean, they’ve been around my entire childhood and they go back to television shows in the ‘50s so that’s just a silly thing to say."
Though, intriguingly, Olsen also seems to believe that the age of big budget 'tentpole' superhero movies like Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America; Civil War could soon evolve into a very different business model for superhero movies (and beyond):
"It’s very bizarre the finances behind making movies at studios -- either they have $200 million or they have like $2 million. Films that are middle budget are very hard to make. So it’s a very strange time right now financially in film and that’s why so many people are going to Netflix and Amazon and creating miniseries. That’s where they can tell the stories that aren’t being told through film. That has to even out at some point –- it can’t just be tentpoles and more tentpoles."
Which, especially in the context of superhero movies, is an extremely interesting point. After all, while superhero movies may not have quite been ever-present throughout the past 30 years, superhero-themed TV shows sure have...
If the age of twenty major superhero movies a year does end, then, is it possible that it will simply evolve into a golden age of superhero TV, or of intriguing, lower-budget projects like Ant-Man?
Give it enough time, and we might just find out...
What do you think, though?