Millar on why it took so long to make Avengers (+ how he helped!)

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Dec 17, 2012

Acclaimed comic writer Mark Millar may not have played an extremely direct role in getting Marvel's The Avengers made for the big screen, but he does have some insight into why it took so long—and says it probably never would have happened without him.

Millar shepherded a revitalization of the popular X-Men property while at Marvel, and eventually earned enough leeway to finally get a crack at the team he wanted all along: The Avengers.

"I worked for Marvel for 10 years and the reason they head-hunted me was to revamp their comics for a modern audience. When I did the X-Men comics they became their No. 1 bestseller straight away," he told The Scottish Sun. "So they then trusted me with the Avengers revamp, although to be honest they tried to talk me into doing a Wolverine book instead. In the company's eyes they thought Captain America, Thor, Iron Man and Hulk were a little less cool. But I always loved them as a kid so I used my influence to push this through. I called that book The Ultimates and wrote it for six years."

Millar says it was his comic take on Cap & Co. that showed the execs that an Avengers film could actually work.

"Marvel told me years back this is one movie they didn't think they could do. They were worried it would be a sensory overload having six, seven or eight different, very distinct, characters with their own unique backstory all coming together. The fear was that would be too complicated," he said. "But Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige was a big fan of my Avengers books and told me it made him realize an Avengers movie could actually be a lot simpler than he'd thought. So they used book one and the ending to book two as the template for the movie, which is enormously flattering."

Considering the juggernaut film franchises that have grown out of The Avengers, it's funny to think that it all might never have happened if MIllar hadn't kept pushing to play in that sandbox.

(Via The Scottish Sun)