No actor has appeared in more comic book movies than Stan Lee, with the Marvel legend making his presence felt in almost every live-action blockbuster that’s been indebted to his work in some form or another, dating right back from Bryan Singer’s X-Men to his final onscreen appearance as a de-aged version of himself in Avengers: Endgame.
During that time, Lee dropped by 22 installments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Agent Carter, three entries of the X-Men franchise, Deadpool, each chapter in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy, both of Tim Story’s Fantastic Four films and Tom Hardy’s Venom to name but a very small few, which even then is barely scratching the surface of his near-ubiquitous presence across the superhero genre whether it be movies, TV shows, video games and everything in between.
In a new interview, though, The Simpsons producer Al Jean has revealed that following his passing at the age of 95 in November 2018, Marvel are no longer allowing Lee’s likeness or voice to be used in any future projects, after he put forward the idea of using pre-recorded audio the long-running animated series had in the vault from his previous guest appearances as part of recent short The Good, The Bart and the Loki.
“We just thought, ‘Oh, we have Stan Lee audio from when he was on our show, could we cameo him in?’. And they said that their policy is he doesn’t cameo now that he’s passed away, which is a completely understandable policy. That was their only note and that was, of course, easily done. And the Grogu note [for the Star Wars-themed short] made total sense, too. It was like, if you let everybody use Grogu in their stuff that wanted to, it would be all over. Believe me, I respect that these franchises have a great power beyond ours. I respect it.”
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It’s completely understandable that Marvel would want to preserve the long-lasting legacy of Stan Lee, and there’s also the questionable ethics of dusting off old recordings to have someone fill a guest spot in a project that comes years after their death, even if his multiple cameos over the years proved that he was hardly against the idea of providing some soundbites for Springfield’s first family.
Source: The Direct