Kumail Nanjiani Defends Martin Scorsese’s Criticism Of Marvel Movies

It seems like ever since Martin Scorsese shared his blunt thoughts regarding superhero movies (comments which he has continuously explained), many actors and directors have spoken out in agreement or against the famous director’s statement. The latest actor to sound off on Scorsese’s criticism of Marvel movies is the comedian and MCU alum Kumail Nanjiani. What might surprise some is that The Eternals actor is ready to defend the filmmaker’s comments. 

The actor, probably best known for his standup comedy and his roles in dramedies like The Big Sick (which he co-wrote with his partner, adapted from their real-life love story), spoke with Esquire about his desire to play a villain and his latest series, the Hulu cautionary tale, Welcome to Chippendales. The conversation soon turned to recent comments by Quentin Tarantino and past statements by the Taxi Driver director. Nanjiani says he may disagree with the pair of movie makers’ concerning superhero flicks but believes they have earned the right to their opinions. He told the publication: 

I obviously love the movies Tarantino makes or Scorsese makes, and I may disagree with Scorsese’s opinion on superhero movies, but I mean, who else has earned the right to have an opinion? If Scorsese hasn’t earned the right to have an opinion on movies, then none of us should have an opinion on movies. It’s so strange that people get upset about it.

It seems like the Stuber star takes a much more leveled-headed view of Scorsese’s comments regarding Marvel’s dominance over the box office over the past few years. While Nanjiani isn’t ready to get upset about comic book movies (especially since he co-starred in one), he does admit to missing more adult cinema fairs. He also added that if The Big Sick had come out in 2019 or 2020, it would have never been released in theaters. The actor continued:

I miss the grown-up movies that have a decent budget, decent movie stars in the theatres. I think our year was the last year where those indie movies found commercial success.

Sadly, a lot of indie films are relegated to streaming services and can often be overlooked. It seems that superhero, horror, and significant franchise sequels are all currently working at the box office. It also seems obvious that Scorsese and Tarantino would be the filmmakers speaking out about the state of cinema, considering they are two of the most vocal individuals in support of the theater-going experience. They are also two of the few directors who can still bring large audiences into the multiplex. 

What’s interesting is while Scorsese would never be caught making a superhero movie, there was a time when Quentin Tarantino considered it. In the ’90s, the Jackie Brown director was interested in bringing Marvel’s Luke Cage to the big screen, but he ended up ditching this plan because his idea to cast Laurence Fishburne in the role was met with resistance. Of course, this was back when the MCU was a distant dream, and Marvel as a company was in a dire financial situation. They were selling film rights of many characters to the highest bidder, which would have probably allowed some level of autonomy and freedom that a superhero filmmaker would probably not enjoy today.

While you may not agree with Martin Scorsese or Quentin Tarantino’s take on superhero movies, they both make some relatively good points, and it’s worth discussing. Still, it’s nice to see a Marvel alum like Kumail Nanjiani have a calm perspective on the state of cinema and the blockbuster filmmakers’ stance on the genre. 

If you have a Disney+ subscription, you can see Kumail Nanjiani’s performance as Kingo in Marvel’s Eternals. Or, if you are in the mood for a dark drama that tells the true story of an Indian immigrant who founded a male revue that became a cultural phenomenon, Welcome to Chippendales is available to stream for anyone with a Hulu plan

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