10+ Scandals Behind Marvel Movies Fans May Not Know About

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is one of the most successful franchises of all time. Fans can't get enough of their favorite superheroes, and with many more movies already set for the future, there's still much more to come.

However, Marvel movies aren't without their secrets and scandals.

From inappropriate tweets to issues with actors, here are thee 10+ scandals behind Marvel movies you might not have heard about.

1. Backlash over the character design of Scarlet Witch.

In the comics, Scarlet Witch and Quiksilver are mutants, but because of licensing issues — the movies couldn't mention anything to do with the X-Men.

So in order to sidestep a potential legal debacle, the MCU had to get creative.

The MCU decided to change the backstories of these characters which upset some fans.

In the comics, Wanda and Pietro Maximoff are of Jewish heritage which is completely erased in the MCU.

Then, the MCU also had them experimented on by HYDRA in order to explain the origin of their powers.

2. A severe lack of merchandise for female characters.

Marvel has had issues with including female characters in the merch multiple times including for characters like Black Widow and Gamora.

A big part of why is because former CEO, Ike Perlmutter, who didn't believe merch with women on it would sell.

3. He's also responsible for why it took Marvel so long to have diverse films.

The MCU has finally started having films with diverse leads such as Black Panther and Captain Marvel, but they might have had some even sooner if Perlmutter wasn't in charge.

In leaked emails, it was revealed that he said female-led movies would be a "disaster."

4. Patty Jenkins almost directed *Thor: The Dark World.*

This might not be the most scandalous item on this list, but it does point to a regular problem Marvel movies have with working with directors.

Jenkins, who has since directed Wonder Woman left because she wanted to make a different movie than the studio wanted her to deliver.

Jenkins departure is part of the reason Natalie Portman hasn't been in many films.

After Patty Jenkins left Thor: The Dark World, Natalie Portman was reportedly really upset and only continued with the film because of her contract.

Portman also wanted to spend more time with her baby, but she was excited to stay with Jenkins at the helm. So, things changed once Jenkins was gone.

5. The re-casting of War Machine.

Fans of Iron Man films know that Terrence Howard originally played the character of Rhodey, who would later become War Machine, but that Don Cheadle took over the part.

The reason for this change is because Terrence Howard asked for a raise, but instead of giving him one, Marvel pushed him out of the film.

Cheadle also had a feud with Robert Downey Jr. over their salaries.

After being pushed out of playing War Machine, Howard made comments in many interviews implicating Robert Downey Jr. and saying that the money for Howard ended up going to RDJ instead.

The entire situation was a mess and quite the scandal.

6. Lawsuits from a former Marvel comics creator.

There are many different artists and writers who have created characters and stories for Marvel, and not all of them were thrilled about the MCU.

Arguably none more so than Marvel Comics' legendary artist/creator — Jack Kirby.

Jack Kirby is best known as the co-creator of some of Marvel's most iconic comic book characters.

Captain America, The X-Men, and the Fantastic Four — all came from Kirby and Stan Lee.

Sadly, Jack spent his later career fighting to have the rights over these characters. These legal battles continued even after Kirby's death.

7. A ridiculous fan-started conspiracy about *Captain Marvel.*

While many were happy to see Marvel have a female-led superhero film, a subset of fans were upset by this.

They trolled troll Brie Larson at every opportunity and even went so far as to try and manipulate the film's score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Luckily, their plan didn't work and *Captain Marvel* was a huge success.

Not only did the film wind up defying the odds, but the scandal also led Rotten Tomatoes to change the way they handle reviews moving forward.

Their revised system is designed to combat this kind of manipulation.

8.The whitewashing of characters in *Doctor Strange.*

While the MCU might be making more of an effort lately to include diversity, they've made some missteps along the way.

In Doctor Strange, Tilda Swinton plays the Ancient One, and this decision led to many discussions about the whitewashing of Asian characters in the franchise.

9. The handling of the character of Mantis.

Concerns over Doctor Strange aren't the only time the MCU has been accused of mishandling Asian representation.

It happened again in 2017's The Guardians of the Galaxy 2 when the MCU introduced the world to Mantis.

In the comics, Mantis is an incredibly powerful and formidable character.

She's bested Thor, Captain America, and Black Panther all on different occasions.

She's also considered to be a feminist icon, so many fans were upset when she was changed for the films to be timid and to call a white man "master."

10. Stan Lee was accused of harassment.

While some accusations of sexual misconduct become widespread, many people haven't heard of these allegations against Marvel creator Stan Lee.

Some of Stan Lee's former nurses alleged to the Daily Mail that they were harassed while helping him at his home.

11. Chris Evans and Jeremy Renner calling Black Widow some sexist names.

In an interview leading up to the release of Avengers: Age of Ultron, Renner and Evans joking around that Black Widow got around, if you know what I mean.

The comments upset a lot of fans, and both actors published an apology in Entertainment Weekly.

12. Scarlett Johannson defending Woody Allen.

It's no secret that Woody Allen has many abuse allegations against him, so fans of Marvel and of Scarlett Johannson were upset when she defended the director.

She told The Hollywood Reporter: "I have been very direct with him, and he’s very direct with me. He maintains his innocence, and I believe him."

13. When James Gunn was fired

One of the biggest Marvel movie scandals ever involved the Twitter account of director James Gunn.

He came under heavy fire after a group of fans unearthed several old Tweets of James' that talked about incredibly sensitive and illegal topics.

Rather than deal with the scandal, Disney fired James on the spot.

Shortly after news broke that James had signed on to direct DC's The Suicide Squad, Disney then quietly re-hired him after the backlash died down.

However, this upset some fans who didn't appreciate Disney firing Gunn just for the show.

14. The firing of director Edgar Wright from *Ant-Man*.

Edgar had been attached to direct Ant-Man since 2006, so his departure came as a huge surprise to many.

As Edgar explained on Variety's Playback podcast, “I wanted to make a Marvel movie, but I don’t think they really wanted to make an Edgar Wright movie.”

15. Edward Norton's vision for Bruce Banner in *The Incredible Hulk*.

Edward Norton's reputation for being a difficult person to work with precedes him. Supposedly, he wanted to make The Incredible Hulk in the same vein as Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins.

The studio didn't see eye-to-eye with Edward and decided to cut him loose and recast.

16. Mickey Rourke lashes out over Ivan Vanko (aka Whiplash) in *Iron Man 2*.

If you felt let down by the portrayal of Ivan Vanko in Iron man 2, you aren't alone. Mickey Rourke wholeheartedly agrees that the character was diminished.

He has publicly stated his distaste for Marvel and expressed his disappointment regarding the film on numerous occasions.

17. When Tony Stark made a bad joke in *Avengers: Age Of Ultron*.

In one of the most iconic scenes in the history of the MCU, each of the Avengers takes a turn trying to lift Thor's hammer, Mjolnir.

Before Tony Stark makes his attempt, he announces that upon being crowned King of Asgard, he will be instituting 'Prime Nocta.'

Prima Nocta is a medieval custom which gave the King the right to sleep with any young bride on the night of her wedding.

Tony Stark has always been known for his somewhat dark sense of humor, but there are some things you just don't joke about.

The concept of Prima Nocta is central to the film Braveheart and is perhaps best explained by Jim Halpert in The Office.

18. Black Widow referring to herself as a monster in *Avengers: Age Of Ultron*.

Natasha explains to Bruce Banner that during her training to become the Black Widow, she was sterilized. She then proceeds to ask him "you still think you're the only monster on the team?"

Many fans didn't like the suggestion that because a woman was infertile that it made her a monster.

19. Disney blacklists the *Los Angeles Times*

For years now, Disney has combatted rumors that they've been in bed with the city of Anaheim.

The Los Angeles Times ran a series of articles regarding this very subject, much to the Chagrin of the House of Mouse.

In response to the slanderous articles, Disney refused to submit an advanced copy of *Thor: Ragnarok* to the paper for review.

They ended up rescinding the ban after four days, in the wake of heated backlash from nearly every single journalist and media outlet on the planet.

It just goes to show — you don't mess with the press.

20. Uproar over the announcement of *Shang-Chi And The Legend Of The Ten Rings*.

In 2019, Marvel announced their first-ever Asian-led film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. The only problem is that Shang-Chi's main villain, Fu Manchu, is incredibly racist.

The character helped give rise to what became known as the "Yellow Peril" in the early 20th century.

21. The complete absence of LGBTQ+ characters.

There are plenty of LGBTQ+ characters in the Marvel universe. As a matter of fact, some of the people we've seen on-screen (like Valkyrie) are gay or bisexual in the comics.

Yet for some reason, Disney and the MCU choose to omit this completely.

22. Loki's derogatory language in *The Avengers*.

During Black Widow's interrogation of Loki, he refers to her as a "mewling quim." This may sound like a throwaway piece of dialogue but its origins are much darker and misogynistic than you might think.

A quim is a derogatory old English term for a woman's vagina. So basically, Loki is calling her the C-word.