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WJEC AS Film FM2 British and American Film Sec A Producers and Audiences: Marvel Cinematic Universe

Rob Miller | Tuesday September 22, 2015

Categories: A Level, EDUQAS A Level, EDUQAS AS, FM2, Section A: Producers and Audiences

The Marvel Cinematic Universe

“No longer will an MCU simply be known as a Medium Close Up?

Marvel Cinematic Universe is a relatively new franchise, formed in 2007. In 1944 Captain America was technically the first film based on Marvel Comics. It was escapist serialised film in 15 chapters designed to be a diversion from America’s involvement in the battlegrounds of World War Two (Captain America fought Nazis in the comics but not in the film). There have also been many TV adaptations of Marvel Comics characters and narratives and also adaptations of DC Comics characters over the years in the 1940s, 50s and to a lesser extent in the 60s evidencing declining popularity.

The first feature length film based on a Marvel Comics character was technically the surreal box office failure Howard the Duck, made in 1986. Not many readers will have have heard of the film but a cinematic representation of the comics was born: Howard the Duck (1986) Trailer.

Superhero films were just developing in the 1980s as a new commercially successful stand-alone film genre after the success of DC Comics’ Superman in 1978. The SF film Star Wars had influenced the genre in 1977, acting as a creative catalyst. Superman created the genre template that was to be much copied and the film was distributed by Warner Brothers, one of The Big Six, along with Superman II and Superman III in 1980 and 1983 respectively. George Lucas (Star Wars) became involved as producer of Howard the Duck as the film lurched into a science fiction comedy hybrid based on the Marvel Comic superhero of the same name, hoping to ignite interest from a growing superhero film fan base. From this critical and commercial disaster, the cinematic adaptation of Marvel Comics was born.

History and Origins

The history and origins of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is complex but can be simplified. Marvel Films (Marvel Studios) had been making superhero films since 1993 under the umbrella of...


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