Marvel Chief Joe Quesada recently opened up about the studio’s next two feature films Thor and Iron Man 2. He dished about how Kenneth Branagh sold him on his vision for Thor, as well as Jon Favreau’s forward thinking when it comes to Iron Man. Over at /Film they posted a few informative snippets of his column, which takes us behind closed doors at Marvel.
Below Quesada describes what happened when director Branagh pitched his story for Thor at a Marvel Creative meeting. He was accompanied by producer Kevin Feige, and apparently they made a strong impression on everyone in the room.
It was performance art. Kevin would give us the establishment of the shot and the situation: “Here we are. We’re in (take your pick of location). And here’s Odin and he’s coming up to (pick a character).” And then Kenneth would come in and give you the color commentary. “Odin has an air of majesty to him” and he’d act out the Odin part or the Thor part. So we sat there and literally got a three-hour one-man show from Kenneth Branagh. It was fantastic.
Coming from Branagh’s theatrical background it’s no surprise that he gave such an animated pitch for the executives. Quesada understood that the director’s comprehension of acting would also help serve the film’s story and it’s characters.
He’s definitely about character, which is the quintessential trait you have to have to understand the Marvel characters. It’s not just big hammers and capes and things like that. It’s about what makes the character tick. There’s definitely a reason for Thor, a reason for him being and a very deep family relationship and story in the movie that I think is going to be very cool. Oh yeah, and there’s reasons and motivations for him to hit people with his hammer… hard!
As for Jon Favreau and Iron Man, the director’s always had the hero’s future set in his mind even before he touched the first movie. Quesada recounts a conversation he had with him a few years back where they discussed the film and it seemed as if Favreau was already ahead of the game in terms of what he wanted to do.
He wanted to know who he is and why Tony Stark does what he does. That was really key to Favreau: why put on the suit and try to do good things? It was a much tougher question once he defeats the Iron Monger, gets his tech and his company back…why continue doing this? What does Tony Stark stand for? In essence, the thing I never revealed about that conversation in the past is that Jon was looking for these answers because he was already thinking ahead, he was thinking about Iron Man 2.
So we have two different films, with very different directors, who share a passion for their respective characters. I’m beyond anxious to see anything, and I mean anything from Thor. I don’t care if its a random piece of fabric, I’d just love to know what Branagh has in store for the guy. If he can give a successful three hour one man show to a group of suits, what can he do for the fan boys out there? I think they’re a bit harder to please, but let’s hope he can rope them in!
Does this make you more or less excited about Thor and Iron Man 2? Are you interested in seeing either film?