A lot of words have already been spoken and written about how Kevin Feige is essentially the ruler of the creative fabric that is the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Every year, Feige and the other members of Marvel’s brain trust hold an annual retreat where they plot out and refine the broader strokes of the next phase or saga of the MCU.
Subsequently, individual directors and writers are hired for projects and given certain benchmarks or milestones that must be reached in the television show or movie.
Think of it as Kevin Feige is throwing a big party, and the director, writers, and showrunners are the chefs hired to make the food. Each chef is hired to make a dish and told they absolutely, must use these three or four ingredients in what they make (Iron Chef style), no exceptions. Additionally, each chef doesn’t know what the other chefs are being hired to prepare, only Kevin Feige and the rest of the Marvel brain trust have this information.
Feige somewhat flexed his power in Loki season 2 according to head writer Eric Martin.
In episode 3 of season 2, titled 1893, Martin revealed that he had written and shot scenes for the episode that all the cast and crew enjoyed but when Feige got wind of what the episode entitled, he made swift changes.
“[Let’s take] episode three. When we go to the Chicago World’s Fair, that was originally conceived as this side quest episode where we’re following Renslayer and Miss Minutes as they are finding Victor Timely. Loki, Mobius, Sylvie, and everybody else, they didn’t show up until the very, very end of that.“
“In a vacuum, that episode worked really well. It was one of those ones where, you know, random Marvel executives would pull me aside in the hallway and they’re like, ‘Great episode. Let’s grab coffee.’ So I know that one’s really working. But at some point, Kevin Feige looks at that and he’s like, ‘No, we’re not doing it like this. I need Loki and Mobius in there. I need to be with our main character. I need to have those two trying to solve a similar mystery.’“
“It was easy at first to look at that and think the studio is missing the point. This is a great episode. We should run with that. But once we got into it, I realized he was totally right. I think our audience would have felt betrayed. It would have made Miss Minutes and Renslayer more interesting characters, we would have deepened them. But I think we were able to do that anyway, while also forwarding our story with our main characters. That was something I really learned there. Maybe if we had ten episodes, you do that episode like that, but with a smaller tapestry like this, I think you stick with your players.“
It’s an interesting insight into how Feige can exercise control over a MCU project, especially considering the fact that it was an episode that everyone else involved with Loki seemed to love.
This pseudo-limitation is exactly why potential Blade director Albert Hughes recently stated that “real filmmakers” don’t want to work for Marvel.
Likewise, longtime Sam Raimi go-to actor Bruce Campbell revealed that something similar happened in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and that a bunch of reshoots occurred on the film due to storyline changes across the broader MCU.
More recently, Captain America: Brave New World is rumored to be headed for extensive reshoots due to overall changes in The Kang multiversal war saga.
Do you think Feige made the right call or would have have preferred to get some extended time with Renslayer and Miss Minutes? Let us know in the comment section below.