Elizabeth Olsen Says Criticism of Marvel Movies 'Takes Away from the Talented Crew'

The actress, currently starring in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, expressed her feelings on highly publicized derision directed at the MCU from filmmakers like Martin Scorsese

Elizabeth olsen
Elizabeth Olsen. Photo: Rich Fury/Getty

Elizabeth Olsen is coming to the defense of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, in which she plays the role of Wanda Maximoff/The Scarlet Witch.

Olsen, 33, spoke out in response to previous criticism directed at the MCU, most notably by the likes of Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, both of whom she said "make them [the Marvel movies] seem like a lesser type of art," per her interview with The Independent on Saturday.

"I'm not saying we're making indie art films, but I just think it takes away from our crew, which bugs me," the actress, who currently stars in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, said. "These are some of the most amazing set designers, costume designers, camera operators – I feel diminishing them with that kind of criticism takes away from all the people who do award-winning films, that also work on these projects."

Olsen, who has also enjoyed time in the spotlight as an indie darling in films like 2011's Martha Marcy May Marlene, acknowledges that the MCU is populated by tentpole movies made to make money, but that doesn't necessarily mean they are bad films.

"From an actor's point of view, whatever, I get it; I totally understand that there's a different kind of performance that's happening," she said. "But I do think throwing Marvel under the bus takes away from the hundreds of very talented crew people. That's where I get a little feisty about that."

Olsen's comments come after Scorsese's highly publicized 2019 take on the MCU, in which he said in an interview with Empire via The Guardian that those movies "are not cinema" and likened them to "theme parks."

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Soon after, another award-winning filmmaker echoed those feelings, when Coppola said Scorsese, 79, was "right."

"We expect to learn something from cinema, we expect to gain something, some enlightenment, some knowledge, some inspiration," The Godfather director, 83, told journalists after accepting the Prix Lumiere in France, according to the AFP at the time.

"I don't know that anyone gets anything out of seeing the same movie over and over again," he continued. "Martin was kind when he said it's not cinema. He didn't say it's despicable, which I just say it is."

Since those comments, however, Olsen has gone on to appear as Wanda in several well-reviewed Marvel projects, including Avengers: Endgame in 2019 as well as the studio's first series WandaVision on Disney+ last year.

That show is pegged at 91 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, with an audience score of 88 percent.

As for future MCU projects featuring Wanda/The Scarlet Witch, Olsen remains open. "I don't know how big the plans actually are, but I'm down for anything as long as there's a good idea attached to it," she told The Independent.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, also starring Benedict Cumberbatch, is currently in theaters.

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