96 year-old legend Roger Corman says Marvel should learn from James Cameron

roger corman
Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for EPIX

It’s been roughly 12 hours or so since we last heard a notable filmmaking talent weigh in on the never-ending superhero debate, with Marvel Cinematic Universe veterans Joe and Anthony Russo unsurprisingly opting not to side the with Martin Scorseses, Francis Ford Coppolas, and Ridley Scotts of the industry, so we were about due.

However, the freshest addition to the discourse comes from an unlikely source; 96 year-old B-movie legend Roger Corman, who knows a thing or two about what does and doesn’t work having directed over 50 features and produced in excess of 500 during a prolific career that’s been ongoing for 70+ years.

In an interview with Paste, The Pope of Pop Cinema offered his two cents on the matter, and urged Marvel to take a leaf out of his protege James Cameron’s book when it comes to marrying spectacle and story.

“I do think, actually, that they are extremely well made, and the special effects are just phenomenal. I think they’re good pictures. But if I have any quibble with them, it’s that…Jim Cameron, who started with me, when you see a big-budget effects film from Jim, you always recognize that the story comes first, and the special effects are only there to help the story. Whereas with Marvel, it sometimes feels like the special effects are the stars, and the story frankly can be filler between the special effects. It could be improved if they followed the lead of Jim and worked more on their stories.”

While Marvel’s methods have seen the shared mythology become the top-earning property in history, if there’s anyone in a position to offer advice and/or expertise to Kevin Feige’s outfit on how to improve, then visual effects pioneer, technological trailblazer, and the only person to have directed the highest-grossing film of all-time twice over would be uniquely qualified to do so.