Legendary Marvel Comics co-creator Stan Lee — famous for giving the world beloved superheroes including Spider-Man, Iron Man and the Incredible Hulk — died Monday. He was 95.
According to TMZ, Lee suffered a number of illnesses over the last year, including pneumonia. His daughter J.C. told the site, “My father loved all of his fans. He was the greatest, most decent man.”
He first used the pseudonym Stan Lee, which he would later adopt as his legal name, in the May 1941 issue of “Captain America.”
Lee took a brief respite from the comics industry in the early 1940s, when he enlisted in the US Army and served in the Signal Corps, repairing communications equipment, and also worked in the Training Film Division, where he wrote manuals, slogans, and cartoons.
He returned to Timely Comics in 1945 and married wife Joan two years later. They welcomed their daughter, Joan Celia “J.C.” Lee, in 1950; their younger daughter, Jan, died at just 3 days old in 1953.
In 1950, Timely Comics publisher Martin Goodman tasked Lee with creating a new superhero team to rival DC Comics’ Justice League. By that time, the public’s view of comics had taken a downturn, and a disheartened Lee considered leaving the business until his wife urged him to write one story he “really liked” before quitting, he recalled to The Hollywood Reporter in 2016.
“I always wrote for myself,” he reflected of his career. “I figured I’m not that different from other people. If there’s a story I like a lot, there’s got to be others with similar tastes.”
Lee’s first team of heroes, whom he co-created with artist Jack Kirby, was the Fantastic Four in 1961. Following the success of the foursome, Lee and Kirby went on to create...
Thor, Iron Man, the X-Men, the Incredible Hulk, Black Panther and, most famously, Spider-Man in 1962. The characters would eventually team up, as well as with resurrected Timely Comics characters like Captain America, to form The Avengers.
Timely was renamed Marvel Comics, and Lee was named publisher and editorial director of the company in 1972, when he wrote his last two issues of “Fantastic Four” and “The Amazing Spider-Man.”
In the 1980s, he transitioned to a brand ambassador for Marvel, leading to his famed film cameos in Marvel franchises.
In 1998, Lee launched Stan Lee Media, which would become POW! Entertainment. Despite his massive success, he conceded to The Hollywood Reporter in 2016 that he wasn’t as business-savvy as he could have been, most notably regarding the 1998 deal in which he signed over his percentage of a film’s gross profits in exchange for a flat $10 million and $1 million per year for the rest of his life.
Considering that “The Avengers” and “Black Panther” each grossed over $500 million alone, Lee’s contract cost him a significant chunk of change within the last decade.
In addition to creating iconic comics and characters, Lee worked to tackle social issues. In 1968, Lee wrote an essay condemning racism and bigotry in his “Stan’s Soapbox” column, writing, “Racism and bigotry are among the deadliest social ills plaguing the world today. But, unlike a team of costumed supervillains, they can’t be halted with a punch in the snoot or a zap from a ray gun. The only way to destroy them is to expose them — to reveal from the insidious evil they really are.”
The comic book legend faced some hardships late in his life.
In August 2015, Lee’s former assistant sued him for “severe mental abuse.”
In July 2017, Lee’s wife of 69 years, Joan, passed away at 93 years old. Six months later, a then-95-year-old Lee was accused of sexually harassing his nurses and home aides. In February 2018, Lee was hospitalized for an irregular heartbeat and shortness of breath, and later was treated for pneumonia.
That same month, police investigated Lee’s home and bank accounts after $1.4 million reportedly went missing from his funds.
Lee is survived by his daughter. https://pagesix.com/2018/11/12/marvel-comics-co-creator-stan-lee-dies-at-95/?utm_source=maropost&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=news_alert&utm_content=20181112&tpcc=nypbreaking&mpweb=755-7431481-719171552Read More on Pagesix