It’s no secret that Marvel Studios has had some struggles to start off 2023. Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania opened to less-than-desirable results while a number of delays reportedly hit a number of Phase 5’s new series coming to Disney+.
Some of that came to a head in recent days when top Marvel Studios executive Victoria Alonso left her position with the studio, ending a 17-year run alongside the MCU’s top brass.
Disney Let Top Marvel Studios Executive Go
Variety shared new information on Victoria Alonso's shocking exit from Marvel Studios, noting that she was fired from her position as Marvel Studios' president of physical and post-production, visual effects, and animation production.
While the exact reasoning behind her firing is unknown, a group of Disney executives including Disney Entertainment Co-Chairman Alan Bergman, who oversees Marvel Studios, made the final call, which reportedly "blindsided" Alonso.
Bergman made the difficult decision alongside Disney's legal department and human resources department.
Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige - who allegedly "felt mired in an impossible situation" - was reportedly not involved with Disney's decision for Alonso and did not intervene during the termination process, a sign that Feige was not completely opposed to Alonso's firing.
Alonso was in charge of the visual effects and post-filming work on Marvel Studios' movies and shows during a time when the company had to meet record-high output, particularly to grow Disney+'s subscriber base. This pressure, according to Variety, reportedly led to quality issues internally that ultimately resulted in Alonso's firing.
Alonso's firing spurred much conversation online, with accusations emerging of a toxic work environment being created under her leadership.
Variety spoke with a VFX artist that worked on one of Marvel's Disney+ shows, who believed that Marvel's biggest issue was its lack of clear guidelines:
“The show I was on really struggled because it was an established character whose powers they were reconceiving for the MCU... Marvel doesn’t figure shit out beforehand.”
However, another senior VFX expressed doubt over the accusations, telling Variety that “the idea of a very senior exec terrifying rank and file artists, per some reports, feels a bit off."
A former Disney film executive also praised Alonso to Variety, saying that "she was the epitome of professional and knows her stuff.”
Will Disney Firing Help Marvel Studios Move Forward?
Disney certainly had its fair share of difficulties during the pandemic era. Even looking at the way certain movies broke box office records in this challenging time, Victoria Alonso's relationship with Marvel Studios and Disney seemed to be falling apart, at the very least on Disney's side with her performance.
This comes at a time when Disney delayed numerous Marvel Studios projects almost indefinitely, as the company continues to struggle with producing content that performs as well as past entries from the Infinity Saga.
And after Phase 4 brought a record-breaking slate of content in terms of quantity with widely mixed results across the board, Disney and Marvel seem to be stepping back for Phase 5 to ensure the MCU's quality remains up to par.
Currently, there are no reports regarding whether Alonso will be replaced in her position or how the corporate structure of the Marvel Studios will change as the Multiverse Saga moves into new stories.
But with this major changing of the guard, fans only hope that the MCU finds its footing once again with a couple of potentially groundbreaking new projects still set to come this year alone.