A cameo by Stan Lee has been a staple in films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), and the latest film Avengers: Endgame has turned out extra special as it is the last cameo that the Marvel Comics patriarch shot for.
Lee had shot a number of walk-on bits for upcoming movies before his death at 95 last November. Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo have said that the one that features in the movie is the last one he shot, reported ew.com.
It comes just as Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) venture back in time to the year 1970 for one more chance at nabbing the Tesseract and the Space Stone contained therein.
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Then the audience can hear Steppenwolf’s song Hey Lawdy Mama released that year, and see a white muscle car with a psychedelic bumper sticker declaring, “Nuff said”.
That was just one of Lee’s catch-phrases from his messages to readers of Marvel Comics.
The audience can see Lee not as the spry old-timer, but as a grinning, bushy-haired hippie rambler, with a beautiful lady by his side and the gas pedal pressed to the floor.
Joe explained to ew.com, “It’s sort of the hippie era, and Stan’s cameoing as a hippie and it’s the free-love era. He’s saying, ‘Make love, not war!’
Visual-effects artists used the same technology they deployed to de-age Michael Douglas in 2015’s Ant-Man, strip decades off Kurt Russell in 2016’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and briefly turn Robert Downey Jr. into a teenager in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War.
The directors did not speak of the specifics of the technique, but by scanning Lee’s face, they could Photoshop away the years and make him look half his age.
“It seemed like fun when we originally had the idea before Stan passed. Oh, what did Stan look like in the ’70s? It’s the last Stan Lee cameo that made it to film,” Joe said.
“Can you believe it?” Anthony added.
Fans aren’t particularly impressed by the cameo as they were expecting more.
“Stan Lee cameo could have been extended and handled better. Deserved more,” tweeted one user, while another wrote, “It should’ve been bigger and more epic.”
For some fans, it was plain emotional.
“Seeing Stan Lee do his last cameo really hit me in the feels,” wrote one user.