The man behind the characters of the Avengers: Endgame movie
If you’ve already seen Avengers: Endgame in cinemas, some of your enjoyment will be owed to this man – Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee (who coincidentally has a cameo in the movie, filmed shortly before his death last November at age 95).
Lee was Marvel Comics royalty, and during the 1960s helped to create a number of characters we all recognise today – the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, the Hulk, Iron Man, the Avengers, the X-Men, Thor, Black Panther and Doctor Strange among them. All have been adapted for the big screen in recent years, with Lee making a cameo in nearly all of their movies.
A new book by Taschen, The Stan Lee Story, looks at his incredible life, with unseen photos from his family archives. Learn how Lee (real name Stanley Lieber, which he intended to save for his first novel) grew up in New York, joined Timely Comics – the company that became Marvel – in 1939 at age 17, and then wrote instruction manuals for the army during the Second World War.
He later married his wife Joan, who would encourage him to write comics the way he wanted to, prompting him to create the Fantastic Four, with characters who were flawed and therefore more relatable than heroes like Superman or Batman. In the 1970s, he became a frontman for Marvel Comics, promoting the characters on TV and to Hollywood studios.
Lee leaves behind quite a legacy. The book is released in May.