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I recently saw Fantastic Four 2015 and I noticed that it did not include a Stan Lee cameo.

As I thought about it, I think that the:

  • 1989 Captain America movie.
  • 1990s Fantastic Four B movie.
  • Howard The Duck.
  • the various Punisher movies.
  • the 1940s Captain America short films

might be examples of other Marvel movies that did not include Stan Lee cameos.

So what determines whether or not Stan Lee does a cameo? And what is the list of Marvel movies which did NOT include a Stan Lee cameo?

I know that Fantastic Four is produced by Fox and is not part of MCU, but I am imagining that there is more to the answer than just that.

  • 2
    Notably, the Fantastic Four B-Movie was never intended for broadcast. It was just a rights grab. – Valorum Aug 8 '15 at 8:56
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    Is it really spoiler worthy to hide information about which movies have Stan Lee cameos? – ThePopMachine Aug 15 '15 at 0:20
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    @Richard, "Notably, the Fantastic Four B-Movie was never intended for broadcast. It was just a rights grab." - Probably the same as the 2015 B-Movie. – coderworks Aug 15 '15 at 16:21
  • @ThePopMachine ...or about who produces Fantastic Four? – Kevin Workman Nov 7 '15 at 14:43
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According to Yahoo Movies, the list of Marvel films that don't contain a Stan Lee cameo is

  • "Blade" (New Line Cinema 1998)
  • "Blade II" (New Line Cinema 2002)
  • "X2" (20th Century Fox 2003)
  • "The Punisher" (Lions Gate Films 2004)
  • "Blade: Trinity" (New Line Cinema 2004)
  • "Elektra" (20th Century Fox 2005)
  • "Ghost Rider" (Columbia Pictures 2007)
  • "Punisher: War Zone" (Lionsgate 2008)
  • "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" (20th Century Fox2009)
  • "X-Men: First Class" (20th Century Fox 2011)
  • "Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance" (Columbia Pictures 2012)
  • "The Wolverine" (20th Century Fox 2013)

Obviously this isn't complete because, as you've pointed out, it doesn't include

  • Howard the Duck (1986)
  • Captain America (1990)
  • Man-Thing (2005)
  • The Punisher (1989)
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

and a host of low-budget serial films from the 1940s and 50s


What seems to determine whether he gets a cameo is whether he cares about the characters, whether he's offered one by the Director and whether the studio overrides the Director.

One of the losing battles regarded Stan Lee’s original cameo in the film. Originally, Gunn had planned to have Lee in one of the Collector’s exhibits. Groot would then look at the exhibit aghast, to which Lee would flick off the large tree creature.”
- Guardians of the Galaxy Director James Gunn

8

Many of the films mentioned, like the 1990 Captain America, 1989 Punisher, and Man-Thing, are direct-to-video, not actual theatrical films.

Of the 41 theatrical feature films based on Marvel Comics, he has appeared in most. 1986's Howard the Duck was done before Marvel Entertainment got on their filmmaking kick, and before they even decided to start giving Lee cameos. That began in 1998 with Blade.

At first, it was determined that Lee would only appear in films based on characters he created. Thus, he does not appear in...

Blade 1, 2, & 3 The Punisher or Punisher: War Zone Ghost Rider or Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance Wolverine 1 & 2

He also did not appear in X2 because, at the time, they were only thinking of giving him cameos in the original films. That did not last, and he's appeared in most sequels.

I don't know why he doesn't appear in X-Men: First Class or Days of Future Past, or 2015' Fantastic Four (all Fox releases), but he is in Apocalypse.

Despite not creating Captain America, it at least was a character whose history he was influential in, and he gets a cameo in each Cap movie. Folks have recently decided to start putting him in films of characters he did not create. Hence, he appears in Guardians of the Galaxy and Deadpool.

The films Lee DOES appear in are...

  • 2000: X-Men
  • 2002: Spider-Man
  • 2003: Daredevil & Hulk
  • 2004: Spider-Man 2
  • 2005: Fantastic Four
  • 2006: X-Men: The Last Stand
  • 2007: Spider-Man 3 & Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
  • 2008: Iron Man & The Incredible Hulk
  • 2010: Iron Man 2
  • 2011: Thor & Captain America: The First Avenger
  • 2012: Marvel's The Avengers & The Amazing Spider-Man
  • 2013: Iron Man 3 & Thor: The Dark World
  • 2014: Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 & Guardians of the Galaxy
  • 2015: Avengers: Age of Ultron
  • 2016: Captain America: Civil War & X-Men: Apocalypse
  • 2017: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming & Thor: Ragnarok
-1

1998's Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. also belongs on that list. I know it's popularly disliked, but having gone back and watched it lately, it's not that terrible compared to a lot of other pre-2000 Marvel related movies.

  • Any reason why Stan Lee didn't feature a cameo? – Edlothiad Feb 27 '18 at 12:09

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