Marvel CEO’s “No Female-Lead Movies” Email Makes No Sense

Recently, news outlets have been reporting on a leaked email between Sony Studios executive Michael Lynton and Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter which revealed that the resistance against a Black Widow or other female-lead Marvel movies comes from the very top of Marvel itself.

The email is only one part of a larger conversation between Lynton and Perlmutter, but it’s still very strange.

The email in question:

Michael,

As we discussed on the phone, below are just a few examples. There are more.

Thanks,

Ike

1. Electra (Marvel) – Very bad idea and the end result was very, very bad. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=elektra.htm

2. Catwoman (WB/DC) – Catwoman was one of the most important female character within the Batmanfranchise. This film was a disaster. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=catwoman.htm

3. Supergirl – (DC) Supergirl was one of the most important female super hero in Superman franchise. This Movie came out in 1984 and did $14 million total domestic with opening weekend of $5.5 million. Again, another disaster.

Best,
Ike

Perlmutter’s argument is pretty straightforward—the lack of female-lead Marvel movies isn’t about gender or politics—it’s about money, and just about money. (We’re getting a Captain Marvel movie, after all.) But even from that standpoint, don’t Perlmutter’s examples seem…oddly chosen?

I wonder if Layton responded with something like the following:

Ike,

But…

1. The Hunger Games (2012-now) – Very good idea with excellent actors, all posters featuring female lead, that stays true to the themes of the book. $2 billion gross over three films and counting. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/franchises/chart/?id=hungergames.htm

2. Divergent (2014-now) – Divergent is one of the most important franchises within the HarperCollins stable. I couldn’t tell you the name of the main character but the series has still grossed over half a billion dollars over two films. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=divergent.htm

3. Lucy (2014) – Lucy is a totally made up story about how Scarlett Johansson got drugged and developed superpowers. It grossed almost half a billion dollars. If only you had its star under some sort of exclusive contract to play a similar character… http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=lucy.htm

4. Three words, repeated constantly: Let. It. Go. LET IT GOOO-OHHH. There now it’s in your head, too. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=frozen2013.htm

NOW GIVE ME SPIDER-GWEN.

Best,

Not-Michael

Yes. Give us ALL Spider-Gwen.

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