Avi Arad Deserves More Credit Than Kevin Feige For MARVEL Cinematic Universe?

The man that produced The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Avi Arad, was irked by a recent article published by Bloomberg's Business Week which pinned a lot of Marvel's cinematic success on Kevin Feige. He's responded with a letter detailing his contributions.

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By nailbiter111 - 5/4/2014
Before 2005, Marvel was generating income from comic books, toys, and license deals with Hollywood studios that adapted their comics into films. But after witnessing studios mishandling their properties, as with The Punisher, Daredevil, and Elektra, the company decided to become a presence in Hollywood. To do so, they needed funds. That is when they struck a deal with Merril Lynch. They received $525 million, but had to use the film right's of 10 Marvel characters as collateral: Captain America, The Avengers, Nick Fury, Black Panther, Ant-Man, Cloak & Dagger, Dr. Strange, Hawkeye, Power Pack, and Shang-Chi. Paramount was also included in the deal, and was structured in such a way that "Marvel would pick up the first 5% of gross as a producer's fee, then Paramount would recoup distribution costs and its fees, and then Marvel would keep the rest." For the first time Marvel had complete creative control and quickly went to work on their first live-action film, Iron Man. Its success led to the birth of the Marvel cinematic universe. So, who is responsible for setting things into motion?

Last month, , wrote an article: "The Pow! Bang! Bam! Plan to Save Marvel, Starring B-List Heroes." In it, Devin placed most of the credit for the Marvel cinematic universe succeeding upon the shoulder's of Kevin Feige, who is currently the president of Marvel Studios. Though, the piece has irked Avi Arad, who held corporate positions as Chairman and CEO of Marvel Studios, Chief Creative Officer of Marvel and a Marvel director, until he resigned in 2006. Here's the part of the article in which Avi Arad has taken particular exception to.
Finally, Marvel decided to create its own studio. In 2005 it put up as collateral the film rights to characters it still controlled, such as Captain America and Nick Fury, and got $525 million in financing from Merrill Lynch. Arad, who had doubts about the strategy, resigned the following year. Feige was named studio chief in 2007. He was 33 years old, and he was in charge of Hollywood’s first major independent movie studio since DreamWorks.

Avi Arad disagrees with that assertion and has sent out an email in response (via  Daily Mars ), hoping to cast a light upon this matter.

“Good morning Devin. As usual you manage to disappoint me with your false statements. I am sure you were told by Marvel that I resigned over the self-financing strategy. It is about time for a reporter like you to do your homework and check the facts. It will sound arrogant to you, but I single handedly put together the Marvel slate. Read it carefully and you will notice the natural progression of the character’s design to get to where we are today. You should reach out to Merill Lynch and Ambac Insurance and to our international partners that came on board based on my track record. Our financial partners counted on my reputation. I had to work very hard to convert the doubters. They trusted me and without Iron Man this article would have not been written. Iron Man was not even in the original slate. I knew that we needed it so I set out to get it back from Newline and the rest is history. Our financing would have never happened without me reaching out to Brad Grey to make a distribution deal that will give you a corporate guarantee. Other people in Marvel worked for many months with Universal and could not reach a deal. I got tired of waiting and went to Brad. The deal was done in days, successful for both companies. The big presentation to financial institutions and insurance companies took place on the Paramount lot. I was the presenter and it worked. Does this sound to you like someone who disagreed with the strategy to make our own movies? I have forgiven Kevin for following orders and taking the credit, but he had no choice. Shame on you for kowtowing to your business gods. I have given up on journalistic integrity. You called me to talk about Kevin and I gave you the most true and glowing account on someone that I love and respect. Share your notes otherwise you just wasted my time. I will share this letter with other papers and your management to demonstrate the unprofessional self-serving work this reporter demonstrated.” - Avi Arad
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221 Comments
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Mrcool210 - 5/4/2014, 8:30 PM
"Does Avi Arad Deserves More Credit For MARVEL Cinematic Universe Than Kevin Feige?" The answer to your question is a astounding NO!!!
TheIlluminati - 5/4/2014, 8:31 PM
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 wasn't too amazing :(
Destined - 5/4/2014, 8:31 PM
Read this from El's twitter. That's messed up if people are lying and not given this man credit where its due.
Destined - 5/4/2014, 8:32 PM
But if one thing is clear is that Fiege has propelled the MCU no doubt.
AlexanderLykins - 5/4/2014, 8:34 PM
He would have spoke up sooner if it was true. Why wait? His franchise sucks and Feige's is awesome.
Pedrito - 5/4/2014, 8:35 PM
Context please?
JoshWilding - 5/4/2014, 8:35 PM
The only thing this hack deserves credit for is [frick]ing up the Spider-Man franchise.
Praetorian - 5/4/2014, 8:36 PM
AVI ARAD IS A... never met the guy
InsideMan - 5/4/2014, 8:37 PM
well maybe, he did the punisher too, and that movie was cool but the guy is a douche...
AlexanderLykins - 5/4/2014, 8:37 PM
He knows the movies he's making suck and now he wants to take credit for starting the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
KallarkKent - 5/4/2014, 8:40 PM
So he did all the work and then quit? Makes little to no sense.
SuperCat - 5/4/2014, 8:40 PM
TheManFromMars - 5/4/2014, 8:43 PM
I love SuperCat's gif.
MajorRoboto - 5/4/2014, 8:43 PM
That Businessweek article was riddled with other inaccuracies and sloppy reporting besides the bit about Arad. Arad is right to be upset. That being said, Arad may have gotten Marvel Studios started, but Feige made it great. Arad: Amazing Spider-man and Ghost Rider. Feige: 'nuff said.
CEOOfHope - 5/4/2014, 8:46 PM
Even if he helped shape the BEGINNING of the MCU he left long before it became what it is today.
0megaDaGod - 5/4/2014, 8:47 PM
He's correct, but the question of the article is still no.

Is he responsible for helping start Marvel Studios? Yes

Is he responsible for amassing all the properties that started phase 1? According to him, Yes

Is he responsible for the quality of the movies, the interconnectedness of the universe or the elements exclusive to the MCU which have made it so great and successful? Hell no

Arad was probably a big part of getting the ball rolling on the MCU, mainly because of his clout, contacts, and understanding of the industry. But to equate that to the quality of the MCU in any way is foolish. Look at the shit Arad has produced when he's in the driver's seat, instead of being the guy who's paying for gas and looking up the destination before the trip starts. Absolute garbage juice.

It reminds of the people always trying to note that Kevin Feige works on ALL the Marvel movies as some veiled attempt at showing he's "Just as bad as everyone else". Look at the work that Kevin Feige produces as a consultant on someone else's film. Now look at how things turn out when HE is in control

No contest
RexDartEskimoSpy - 5/4/2014, 8:48 PM
Avi Arad: good businessman, bad filmmaker. Nuff said. (Also, kind of a dick, but that's entirely hearsay.)
RRA - 5/4/2014, 8:49 PM
You know for all we know, this actually could be true.

The problem is the timing makes Arad look like he's crying sour grapes in the aftermath of what Feige's regime has done in the last 6 years and Arad's own questionable handling of the Spider-Man franchise, especially after TASM 2 which has become the worst reviewed entry and lowest domestic OW ever. (Hell Captain friggin America made more on OW stateside than Marvel's most popular character did. *Shakes head.*)
TheManFromMars - 5/4/2014, 8:49 PM
Nobody sucks my cock...

gamecreatorjj - 5/4/2014, 8:51 PM
What an egotistical lunatic.
TheRationalNerd - 5/4/2014, 8:52 PM
Dang, well you learn something new everyday.
RRA - 5/4/2014, 8:53 PM
Also all the nerds whining about IM3 and THOR 2 being "too jokey!" can go watch TASM 2 and come back here and apologize. ;)
soforizo - 5/4/2014, 8:54 PM
Destined - 5/4/2014, 8:54 PM
Well said @Omega and @Roboto!
AlexanderLykins - 5/4/2014, 8:55 PM
@mbembet
So wrong, but so funny.
soforizo - 5/4/2014, 8:56 PM
RRA - 5/4/2014, 8:53 PM

Also all the nerds whining about IM3 and THOR 2 being "too jokey!" can go watch TASM 2 and come back here and apologize. ;)
---

Off-topic much?
RRA - 5/4/2014, 8:57 PM
MrSidtheSloth - Electro playing "Itsy Bitsy Spider" is OK?!?

SageMode - 5/4/2014, 8:57 PM
This guy is losing his marbles. He's contradicted himself numerous times in the past, says Spider-Man should be the main focus if he's in an Avengers movie, and now he wants more credit for the MCU?

Gtfoh!!!!!
soforizo - 5/4/2014, 8:57 PM
Seems like Lord Kevin had some major help.
Pedrito - 5/4/2014, 8:57 PM
Feige cock suckers?
Hey, according to a big circle jerk of an editorial today I can say Feige is the perfect producer and no one should tell me I'm crazy, let alone call me a cock sucker. Haha.
RRA - 5/4/2014, 8:59 PM
soforizo - at CBM, we're ALWAYS off-topic. Don't you know that by now?

Besides as I already said, even if this is true...the Internet will pull down their pants and shit on Mr. Arad (Not literally since that would be pretty gross, but metaphorically) just because of *look at Marvel Studios* and *look at Spider-Man lately.*

yonny616 - 5/4/2014, 8:59 PM
Biggest ego ever. I mean, even Vince McMahon doesn't have this big of an ego.
YoungThanos - 5/4/2014, 9:00 PM
If Arad is so influential with the MCU then why hasn't he duplicated this at Sony with Spider-man???

He seems to boast about how great an impact he was with Marvel yet where is this with ASM and why did he allow Ghost Rider:SOV to go out the way it did????

Sure he broke his neck to get IM from New Line, but it was him who sold the most of the rights for peanuts to begin with.
Pedrito - 5/4/2014, 9:00 PM
Anyway today we learned that Arad started it all and that Singer slept with another 17 year old.
According to people's statements.
RRA - 5/4/2014, 9:00 PM
MrSidtheSloth - was Hitler's opinion valid?

What? You opened that door. ;)

"If you want to go see and movie and leave the theatre without laughing once go see Adam Sandlers new movie"

I actually have to agree with you there. BLENDED looks like its as funny as cancer.
yonny616 - 5/4/2014, 9:01 PM
I now see who inspired this films Electro. Electro wanted back what he created and others took credit for. Lol
soforizo - 5/4/2014, 9:01 PM
YoungThanos - 5/4/2014, 9:00 PM

If Arad is so influential with the MCU then why hasn't he duplicated this at Sony with Spider-man???
---

For starters 1 character vs. 8,000+?
JamesMan - 5/4/2014, 9:02 PM
Avi deserves a lot more credit than he gets. He revived the comic book movie genre and made it as popular as it is today. Kevin is the new blood who had the advantage of having dozens of other CBM films make audiences comfortable enough with seeing them all connected. So consequently, like it or not, without Arad their would be no MCU.
0megaDaGod - 5/4/2014, 9:03 PM
@RRA

"Also all the nerds whining about IM3 and THOR 2 being "too jokey!" can go watch TASM 2 and come back here and apologize. ;)"


LMAO, nice.

You can also tell that to people saying they didn't give too much away in the trailers, as well as those saying this franchise is superior to Raimi's because Raimi's was too campy

I love it when films shut people the phuck up
TheManFromMars - 5/4/2014, 9:05 PM
@MrBlackJack

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