The Man loved his fans. That remained clear of Stan Lee, the iconic creator behind many Marvel Comics who died Monday at the age of 95. In one of his final videos shared online, his camera crew, while setting up their equipment, captured a candid moment of Lee’s unscripted remarks about how much Marvel readers have meant to him.
“I cannot tell you how much I love my fans,” he begins. “Sometimes at night I’m sitting here and I’m thinking, ‘Eh, what’s it all about?’ And then I get a letter from a fan or I read something or I see something or I remember something and I realize it’s so lucky to have fans, fans who really care about you. And that’s the reason I care so much about the fans because they just make me feel so great.”
Lee continues, “There’s something, if you think about it, that is wonderful about somebody caring about you — as I care about them — whom you’ve never met, who may live in another part of the world, but they care and you have something in common and occasionally you contact each other. This business of fans I think is terrific, and I love ’em all.”
The feeling is mutual.
Marvel movie actors like Hugh Jackman (Wolverine), Chris Evans (Captain America), and Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man) paid tribute to the man who effectively changed their careers with his comic book work. Marvel also released a tribute video comprised of archival footage, recent footage, and interviews with Marvel creators about how Lee shaped their lives.
“Creative geniuses like that, you can’t help but walk away learning lessons,” Joe Quesada, Marvel’s chief creative officer, says in the tribute. “They have a way of delivering messages that resonate with those of us who have followed his work and followed the characters he created.”
Sana Amanat, VP of content and character development, adds, “There will never be a world without Stan Lee. He is the heart of the Marvel universe.”