There are several auteurs within the filmmaking industry, like Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, who scoff at the current state of cinema with the dominance of the superhero tentpole franchises, largely targeting their criticism toward the likes of Marvel and its cinematic universe. Elizabeth Olsen, who's one such beneficiary as the MCU's Wanda Maximoff, aka The Scarlet Witch, appeared in several Marvel projects over the years in films as recently as Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and the Disney+ TV series WandaVision. The actress spoke to Variety, defending the hard work behind the scenes.
Doctor Strange Star Speaks Out
"I'm not saying we're making indie art films, but I just think it takes away from our crew, which bugs me," Olsen said. "These are some of the most amazing set designers, costume designers, camera operators — I feel diminishing them with that kind of criticism takes away from all the people who do award-winning films that also work on these projects. From an actor's point of view, whatever, I get it; I totally understand that there's a different kind of performance that's happening. But I do think throwing Marvel under the bus takes away from the hundreds of very talented crew people. That's where I get a little feisty about that."
Scorsese compared Marvel films to theme park rides claiming the superhero movies reshaped exhibition in a way that's harmful to non-superhero movies, while Cappola said it was "despicable" how Marvel helped foster a culture where the film industry values commerce over art, telling GQ, "There used to be studio films," Coppola said. "Now there are Marvel pictures. And what is a Marvel picture? A Marvel picture is one prototype movie that is made over and over and over and over and over again to look different."
Coppola's nephew Nicolas Cage, who's starred in two non-MCU Ghost Rider films and 2010's Kick-Ass, also came to Marvel's defense. "I don't understand the conflict. I don't agree with them on that perception or opinion." Cage told GQ. "I think that the movies that I make, like 'Pig' or 'Joe,' are not in any kind of conflict with Marvel movies. I mean, I don't think the Marvel movie had anything to do with the end of the tweener. By tweener, I mean the $30 to $50 million budget movie. I think movies are in good shape. If you look at 'Power of the Dog,' or if you look at 'Spencer,' or any of Megan Ellison's movies. I think that there's still Paul Thomas Anderson." Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is currently in theaters.