A Marvel Studios executive exposes the major restrictions on MCU live-action projects

A Marvel Studios executive exposes the major restrictions on MCU live-action projects ...

Marvel Studios has worked harder than ever to produce its largest selection of new content to date, both on cinemas and on Disney+. Despite expanding into animation and bringing more live-action entries in Phase 4 than any phase from the Infinity Saga, the team has faced its share of limitations.

The first and foremost was the global epidemic, which saw Phase 4 begin as a whole from May 2020 to January 2021, and resulted in nine new projects being launched in this new MCU narrative period, causing some fan worry about how the franchise's films and television series will come to life in their final versions.

One of the studio's senior executives has shared some insight into how to work within the limitations of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

A Marvel executive discusses Marvel's Live-Action Limitations in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

Brad Winderbaum, Marvel Studios' Head of Animation, talked about his experiences working on both animated and live-action projects within the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

When asked about what animation allows for in storytelling, Winderbaum described it as "an infinite canvas," referring to the fact that on the live-action spectrum, there is only so much that they can "do just logistically."

Marvel: And thats what makes animation so cool. I think a lot of us grew up from, even with the comics, was animation. That was the first time we saw really serialized tales each week? So, how important is animation to telling these Marvel stories? What is it about animation that allows us to tell stories in different ways?

Winderbaum: I mean, it's an infinite canvas. I work not just on the animation side, but also on the live-action side. There are just natural limitations and barriers that arise, just budgetaryly and what you're able to do just logistically in like an actual, tangible environment. Animations are not that way. When you think of it, like animating us having this conversation or animating us on a rocket ship flying through space, it's the same cost.

Winderbaum discussed the Marvel One-Shots that came with the MCU's home releases mostly through Phase 1, which came after many discussions with studio president Kevin Feige about developing shorts for the MCU, which opened the way to extending into previously unseen areas of the franchise with fan-favorite supporting characters:

Marvel: You were actually the co-head of the Marvel One-Shot program that had such incredible expansions of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Item 47, Agent Carter, and All Hail the King. What was it like, you know, was really trying to expand on these stories we had just seen for the first time on the big screen and being like, 'Oh, we want more,' says the author.

Winderbaum: Yes, thanks for bringing it up. It was, in a lot of ways, like the beginning of my career as a marketing executive at Marvel. Things like that, like the discovery of a Chitauri weapon or the friendship with Peggy Carter, she's just exploded. She's a fantastic figure. The next Captain Carter book is still being written.

Limitations on Live-Action MCU Entries

Marvel projects are slowly attempting to return to the quality that existed in the Infinity Saga era, especially when combined with new movie-making technologies and an unprecedented increase in the number of films released. While this certainly brings its drawbacks, Winderbaum explained it as the studio trying to make sure everything looks realistic on screen while the team can truly make it happen behind the camera.

Fans remain hopeful that the Marvel Cinematic Universe's future slate will live up to its usual standard, even if restrictions continue to encroach on the entire industry. And with newly announced mega-projects as Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars on the way, the Marvel team will continue to utilize its resources as effectively as ever.

She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, Marvel Studios' next live-action film, will be released on Disney+ on Wednesday, August 17.

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