In an interview with the New York Times, the legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese has admitted he is not planning to watch “Joker” despite he once had the opportunity to produce it.
The dark thriller’s director, Todd Phillips, said on numerous occasions that the movie was inspired by Scorsese’s famous works “Taxi Driver” and “The King of Comedy.”
The 77-year-old Academy Award-winning director pointed out that he was familiar with the script and the team behind the production: “I know the film very well (…) I thought about it over the past couple of years and decided not to get involved,” Scorsese told the New York Times.
He also added that Joaquin Phoenix did “a remarkable work” portraying the social outcast and comedian Arthur Fleck.
Martin Scorsese, who declined the offer to direct the movie citing personal reasons, made it to the headlines with his criticism of the mainstream comic books movies by Marvel and Disney.
The acclaimed director sparked controversies earlier this year when he compared the contemporary superhero movies to theme parks, saying that they are “not cinema.”
In his point of view, cinema is a form of art. Still, Marvel movies like the “Avengers” series are products whose narratives are modified, audience-tested, market-researched, and re-modified until they are ready for consumption by the general public, Scorsese explained.
Despite his criticism, Scorsese appreciated the work done by the Marvel’s teams. However, he pointed out that these blockbusters “are everything that the classic movies of Paul Thomas Anderson or Claire Denis or Kathryn Bigelow are not.”
The director also noted that every time he watches the movies of one of those filmmakers, he knows he is going to see something completely new and innovative.
In 2019, Avengers: Endgame broke all records in history, becoming the grossing film ever, after reaching USD 2.8 billion at the international box office. Eight other titles from the Marvel’s catalog featured in the Top 30.
Marvel CEO Kevin Feige earlier defended his films against this type of criticism, saying that the series’ lack of significant awards was no indication of a lack of quality or ambition.
Scorsese’s last work, ”The Irishman” drama, criticized for the use of de-aging technology, is considered a leading competitor for the Academy Award nomination for Best Movie, Best Picture, and Best Director, among others.
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with Scorsese’s statement that Marvel movies are marketing products and not cinema?