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What makes a franchise successful? Sometimes it’s an easy answer to figure out, while other times it’s a mystery even with all of the supposed ingredients listed. But Captain America himself, Chris Evans, had absolutely no problem when it came to naming what made the Marvel Cinematic Universe the massive success it's become, and it all boils down to one name. That person is none other than Marvel Studios mastermind, producer Kevin Feige.
Chris The THR’s Awards Chatter podcast recently spoke with Evans, as he promoted his performance on the recent Apple TV+ series Defending Jacob. When the conversation turned to the MCU’s grand success, he gave the following answer:
As much as I'd love to say that it's the actors that are all so wonderful in the roles, I've seen plenty of movies at this caliber with wonderful actors. You love to attribute it to just the director and I've also seen wonderful directors that make movies like this that kind of miss. I guess, the buck stops with Kevin Feige, doesn't it? I mean, it must. It'd be one thing if there were a few good Marvel movies and then a few stinkers. It'd be one thing if every other shop in town was making the hits as effortlessly as Marvel was But it's just not happening that way. I guess when you start to collect the data and figure out what's the common denominator, I really think it must be Kevin Feige. He doesn’t let things be bad.
Chris Evans makes a really good point in his remarks about Kevin Feige’s tenure so far as Marvel Studios’ president. From 2008’s launch of Robert Downey Jr. as the MCU’s Iron Man, straight through, among others, the hiring of Evans as Captain America: The First Avenger’s leading man, there’s been hardly a beat that the producer has missed. All the while, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has proven, under Kevin Feige’s firm hand, that it’s not easy to do this sort of thing anywhere else.
Such talents at the head of a firmly defined, yet easy to pivot cinematic universe makes all the difference. Chris Evans clearly understands this, as during the interview, he credits his time as Steve Rogers, the man out of time, as being an experience that really helped him grow as an actor. Anyone who’s watched his career as a fan would have to agree, as Evans went from a steady supporting player with chops to a huge leading man who still knows how to slot in with a bunch of talented co-stars, be it with or without his star spangled costume.
While Avengers: Endgame gave Chris Evans’ Captain America a fitting sendoff, there are still some who will always associate the man with his MCU character. As he moves into new and exciting ventures, it sounds like he’ll always hold that time in high regard, which is partially thanks to Kevin Feige’s keen eye on how to build an avenging universe.
Defending Jacob is currently available on Apple TV+, while you can see all of Chris Evans’ Marvel Cinematic Universe exploits on Disney+. Check out the 7-day free trial offer, should you not already be a subscriber.