Fans await the day the MCU machine starts back up again and the cycle of hype surrounding the franchise to kick into full gear yet again. However, there has been a bit of a rain cloud hanging over Disney at the moment as the company faces backlash for its general silence around Florida's controversial 'Don't Say Gay' bill.
The piece of legislation would ban the discussion of gender identity and sexual orientation in schools in a state where Disney bases much of its operations.
In direct relation to this, the company came under fire from members of its Pixar animation division. LGBTQ+ employees at Pixar came forward and revealed that Disney had cut instances of queer representation in their films.
Disney CEO Bob Chapek has since come forward and apologized in a memo internally. He also shared intentions to donate $5 million to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) LGBT advocacy group.
This has left some fans wondering where Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios stand on the matter. And if a new tweet is to be believed, fans should not be worried about the MCU brass in this regard, as they have been champions for the community for quite some time.
Kevin Feige Stands With the LGBTQ+ Community
In a now-deleted tweet responding to the Florida/Disney 'Don't Say Gay' bill controversy, Marvel employee Sofia Alexander said that Kevin Feige, Lou D'espisito, and the MCU brass "are incredible powerhouses that stand up for the LGBTQ+ community:"
"I can say with certainty that I'm proud of working at Marvel. Victoria Alonso, Kevin Feige, and Lou D'espisito are incredible powerhouses that stand up for the LGBTQ+ community, especially after Disney's decisions and stances last week with Florda's Don't Say Gay bill.
Alexander, who is working on the upcoming X-Men '97 animated series, specifically called out Marvel exec Victoria Alonso in the deleted tweet. Alonso is a high-ranking name in the MCU who is a member of the LGBTQ+ community herself, being married to a woman with whom she has one daughter.
The MCU is a Franchise for All
There was little question as to where Marvel Studios and the big brains behind the MCU stood when it came to this controversy, but it is nice to have it reiterated by someone within the organization.
Yes, Marvel Studios is directly tied with Disney, meaning the two - in part - share the same views and ideals. However, Marvel has spent the better part of 10 years celebrating the LGBTQ+ community, while Disney as a whole may have not been.
The franchise has been outspoken in its support for people of all gender identities and sexual orientations, reflecting the diverse fandom that it relies upon.
Just look at a couple of recent examples. Whether it's hints of a Valkyrie/Captain Marvel relationship set for Thor 4 or the on-screen romance between Phastos and his husband in last fall's Eternals, the MCU's on-screen output seems more welcoming than ever to queer representation in its stories.
While there is always more work to be done on this front, Marvel is one of the better names in the business when it comes to diverse franchise storytelling. And it is good to hear they are continuing this push despite the actions of their parent company in Disney.