Marvel president Kevin Feige drew from his own experience watching Harry Potter to craft the MCU

By Ale Russian
January 02, 2020 04:57 PM

Turns out Marvel and Harry Potter have a strong connection!

Marvel president and CEO Kevin Feige, 46, was a guest speaker at the New York Film Academy recently, where he explained how he looked to the Harry Potter movies as inspiration on how to run Marvel.

The producer said that even though he had never read the books, and his kids weren’t yet old enough to read them, he would go into every movie completely uninformed but still enjoy them.

“I always default to my experience watching Harry Potter movies,” Feige said. “I went to see every Harry Potter movie opening weekend. I saw it and I enjoyed it and then I forgot all about it and didn’t think about it again until the next Harry Potter movie came out. And those movies were so well made because I could follow it all. I could follow it, I could track it, occasionally I have to go, ‘Who was that?,’ but for the most part I could totally track it.”

He continued, “Now if I had watched every movie ten times, if I had read every book, I bet there are dozens of other things in there that I would see and appreciate, but they never got in the way of me just experiencing it as a pure story. So that’s kind of what we try to navigate. If an Easter egg or a reference or something is so prevalent that it gets in the way of the story you’re telling so that people who aren’t aware of it go, ‘What is this? What’s happening?,’ then we usually pull back on it.”

Chris Evans, Daniel Radcliffe
Credit: Everett Collection (2)

Lke the Harry Potter franchise, Marvel movies haven’t received the esteem some other blockbusters have generated, especially when it comes to awards shows. Feige defended the films he’s produced so far under the company at the Produced By conference in June 2018.

“Maybe it’s easy to dismiss VFX or flying people or spaceships or billion-dollar grosses,” Feige said. “I think it is easy to say that you have already been awarded in a certain way.”

He continued, “[Alfred] Hitchcock never won [the Best Director Oscar], so it’s very nice [getting an award], but it doesn’t mean everything. I would much rather be in a room full of engaged fans.”