Lee in 2007
|Born||Stanley Martin Lieber
December 28, 1922
New York City, US
|Area(s)||Writer, editor, publisher, producer, actor, television host, voice actor, author|
|Notable works||Fantastic Four
|Spouse||Joan Clayton Boocock Lee (m. 1947–present)|
Stan Lee (born Stanley Martin Lieber; born December 28, 1922) is an American comic book writer, editor, publisher, media producer, television host, actor, voice actor and former president and chairman of Marvel Comics.
In collaboration with several artists, most notably Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, he co-created Spider-Man, the Hulk, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Thor, and many other fictional characters, introducing complex, naturalistic characters and a thoroughly shared universe into superhero comic books. In addition, he headed the first major successful challenge to the industry's censorship organization, the Comics Code Authority, and forced it to reform its policies. Lee subsequently led the expansion of Marvel Comics from a small division of a publishing house to a large multimedia corporation.
Stanley Martin Lieber was born in New York City on December 28, 1922, in the apartment of his Romanian-born Jewish immigrant parents, Celia (née Solomon) and Jack Lieber, at the corner of West 98th Street and West End Avenue in Manhattan. His father, trained as a dress cutter, worked only sporadically after the Great Depression, and the family moved further uptown to Fort Washington Avenue, in Washington Heights, Manhattan. When Lee was nearly 9, his only sibling, brother Larry Lieber, was born. He said in 2006 that as a child he was influenced by books and movies, particularly those with Errol Flynn playing heroic roles. By the time Lee was in his teens, the family was living in a one-bedroom apartment at 1720 University Avenue in The Bronx. Lee described it as "a third-floor apartment facing out back", with him and his brother sharing a bedroom and his parents using a foldout couch.
Lee attended DeWitt Clinton High School in The Bronx. In his youth, Lee enjoyed writing, and entertained dreams of one day writing The Great American Novel. He has said that in his youth he worked such part-time jobs as writing obituaries for a news service and press releases for the National Tuberculosis Center; delivering sandwiches for the Jack May pharmacy to offices in Rockefeller Center; working as an office boy for a trouser manufacturer; ushering at the Rivoli Theater on Broadway; and selling subscriptions to the New York Herald Tribune newspaper. He graduated high school early, at age 16½ in 1939, and joined the WPA Federal Theatre Project.
With the help of his uncle Robbie Solomon, Lee became an assistant in 1939 at the new Timely Comics division of pulp magazine and comic-book publisher Martin Goodman's company. Timely, by the 1960s, would evolve into Marvel Comics. Lee, whose cousin Jean was Goodman's wife, was formally hired by Timely editor Joe Simon.
His duties were prosaic at first. "In those days [the artists] dipped the pen in ink, [so] I had to make sure the inkwells were filled", Lee recalled in 2009. "I went down and got them their lunch, I did proofreading, I erased the pencils from the finished pages for them". Marshaling his childhood ambition to be a writer, young Stanley Lieber made his comic-book debut with the text filler "Captain America Foils the Traitor's Revenge" in Captain America Comics No. 3 (May 1941), using the pseudonym "Stan Lee", which years later he would adopt as his legal name. Lee later explained in his autobiography and numerous other sources that he had intended to save his given name for more literary work. This initial story also introduced Captain America's trademark ricocheting shield-toss, which immediately became one of the character's signatures.
He graduated from writing filler to actual comics with a backup feature, "'Headline' Hunter, Foreign Correspondent", two issues later. Lee's first superhero co-creation was the Destroyer, in Mystic Comics No. 6 (Aug 1941). Other characters he created during this period fans and historians call the Golden Age of comics include Jack Frost, debuting in USA Comics No. 1 (Aug. 1941), and Father Time, debuting in Captain America Comics No. 6 (Aug. 1941).
When Simon and his creative partner Jack Kirby left late in 1941, following a dispute with Goodman, the 30-year-old publisher installed Lee, just under 19 years old, as interim editor. The youngster showed a knack for the business that led him to remain as the comic-book division's editor-in-chief, as well as art director for much of that time, until 1972, when he would succeed Goodman as publisher.
Lee entered the United States Army in early 1942 and served stateside in the Signal Corps, writing manuals, training films, and slogans, and occasionally cartooning. His military classification, he says, was "playwright"; he adds that only nine men in the U.S. Army were given that title.Vincent Fago, editor of Timely's "animation comics" section, which put out humor and funny animal comics, filled in until Lee returned from his World War II military service in 1945. Lee then lived in the rented top floor of a brownstone in the East 90s in Manhattan.
He married Joan Clayton Boocock on December 5, 1947, and in 1949, the couple bought a two-story, three-bedroom home at 1084 West Broadway in Woodmere, New York, on Long Island, living there through 1952. By this time, the couple had daughter Joan Celia "J.C." Lee, born in 1950; another child, Jan Lee, died three days after delivery in 1953. Lee by this time had bought a home at 226 Richards Lane in the Long Island town of Hewlett Harbor, New York, where he and his family lived from 1952 to 1980, including the 1960s period when Lee and his artist collaborators would revolutionize comic books.
In the mid-1950s, by which time the company was now generally known as Atlas Comics, Lee wrote stories in a variety of genres including romance, Westerns, humor, science fiction, medieval adventure, horror and suspense. In the 1950s, Lee teamed up with his comic book colleague Dan DeCarlo to produce the syndicated newspaper strip, My Friend Irma, based on the radio comedy starring Marie Wilson. By the end of the decade, Lee had become dissatisfied with his career and considered quitting the field.
In the late 1950s, DC Comics editor Julius Schwartz revived the superhero archetype and experienced a significant success with its updated version of the Flash, and later with super-team the Justice League of America. In response, publisher Martin Goodman assigned Lee to create a new superhero team. Lee's wife urged him to experiment with stories he preferred, since he was planning on changing careers and had nothing to lose.
Lee acted on that advice, giving his superheroes a flawed humanity, a change from the ideal archetypes that were typically written for preteens. Before this, most superheroes were idealistically perfect people with no serious, lasting problems. Lee introduced complex, naturalistic characters who could have bad tempers, fits of melancholy, vanity; they bickered amongst themselves, worried about paying their bills and impressing girlfriends, got bored or even were sometimes physically ill.
The first superhero group Lee and artist Jack Kirby created was the Fantastic Four. The team's immediate popularity led Lee and Marvel's illustrators to produce a cavalcade of new titles. With Kirby primarily, Lee created the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor and the X-Men; with Bill Everett, Daredevil; and with Steve Ditko, Doctor Strange and Marvel's most successful character, Spider-Man, all of whom lived in a thoroughly shared universe.
Comics historian Peter Sanderson wrote that in the 1960s:
DC was the equivalent of the big Hollywood studios: After the brilliance of DC's reinvention of the superhero ... in the late 1950s and early 1960s, it had run into a creative drought by the decade's end. There was a new audience for comics now, and it wasn't just the little kids that traditionally had read the books. The Marvel of the 1960s was in its own way the counterpart of the French New Wave.... Marvel was pioneering new methods of comics storytelling and characterization, addressing more serious themes, and in the process keeping and attracting readers in their teens and beyond. Moreover, among this new generation of readers were people who wanted to write or draw comics themselves, within the new style that Marvel had pioneered, and push the creative envelope still further.
Stan Lee's Marvel revolution extended beyond the characters and storylines to the way in which comic books engaged the readership and built a sense of community between fans and creators. Lee introduced the practice of including a credit panel on the splash page of each story, naming not just the writer and penciller but also the inker and letterer. Regular news about Marvel staff members and upcoming storylines was presented on the Bullpen Bulletins page, which (like the letter columns that appeared in each title) was written in a friendly, chatty style. By 1967, the brand was well-enough ensconced in popular culture that a March 3 WBAI radio program with Lee and Kirby as guests was titled "Will Success Spoil Spiderman" [sic].
Throughout the 1960s, Lee scripted, art-directed and edited most of Marvel's series, moderated the letters pages, wrote a monthly column called "Stan's Soapbox," and wrote endless promotional copy, often signing off with his trademark motto, "Excelsior!" (which is also the New York state motto). To maintain his taxing workload, yet still meet deadlines, he used a system that was used previously by various comic-book studios, but due to Lee's success with it, became known as the "Marvel Method" or "Marvel style" of comic-book creation. Typically, Lee would brainstorm a story with the artist and then prepare a brief synopsis rather than a full script. Based on the synopsis, the artist would fill the allotted number of pages by determining and drawing the panel-to-panel storytelling. After the artist turned in penciled pages, Lee would write the word balloons and captions, and then oversee the lettering and coloring. In effect, the artists were co-plotters, whose collaborative first drafts Lee built upon.
Because of this system, the exact division of creative credits on Lee's comics has been disputed, especially in cases of comics drawn by Kirby and Ditko. Lee shares co-creator credit with Kirby and Ditko on, respectively, the Fantastic Four and Spider-Man feature film series.
In 1971, Lee indirectly helped reform the Comics Code. The US Department of Health, Education and Welfare had asked Lee to write a comic-book story about the dangers of drugs and Lee conceived a three-issue subplot in The Amazing Spider-Man #96–98 (cover-dated May–July 1971), in which Peter Parker's best friend becomes addicted to pills. The Comics Code Authority refused to grant its seal because the stories depicted drug use; the anti-drug context was considered irrelevant. With Goodman's cooperation and confident that the original government request would give him credibility, Lee had the story published without the seal. The comics sold well and Marvel won praise for its socially conscious efforts. The CCA subsequently loosened the Code to permit negative depictions of drugs, among other new freedoms.
Lee also supported using comic books to provide some measure of social commentary about the real world, often dealing with racism and bigotry. "Stan's Soapbox", besides promoting an upcoming comic book project, also addressed issues of discrimination, intolerance, or prejudice.
In later years, Lee became a figurehead and public face for Marvel Comics. He made appearances at comic book conventions around America, lecturing at colleges and participating in panel discussions. He owned a vacation home on Cutler Lane in Remsenburg, New York and, from 1975 to 1980, a two-bedroom condominium on the 14th floor of 220 East 63rd Street in Manhattan. He moved to California in 1981 to develop Marvel's TV and movie properties. He has been an executive producer for, and has made cameo appearances in, Marvel film adaptations and other movies. He and his wife bought a home in West Hollywood, California previously owned by comedian Jack Benny's radio announcer, Don Wilson. Lee was briefly president of the entire company, but soon stepped down to become publisher instead, finding that being president was too much about numbers and finance and not enough about the creative process he enjoyed.
Peter Paul and Lee began to start a new Internet-based superhero creation, production and marketing studio, Stan Lee Media, in 1998. It grew to 165 people and went public through a reverse merger structured by investment banker Stan Medley in 1999, but near the end of 2000, investigators discovered illegal stock manipulation by Paul and corporate officer Stephan Gordon. Stan Lee Media filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February 2001. Paul was extradited to the U.S. from Brazil, and pleaded guilty to violating SEC Rule 10b-5 in connection with trading of his stock in Stan Lee Media. Lee was never implicated in the scheme.
In 2001, Lee, Gill Champion and Arthur Lieberman formed POW! (Purveyors of Wonder) Entertainment to develop film, television and video game properties. Lee created the risqué animated superhero series Stripperella for Spike TV. In 2004 POW Entertainment went public via another reverse merger structured again by investment banker Stan Medley. Also in 2004 Lee announced a superhero program that would feature Ringo Starr, the former Beatle, as the lead character. Additionally, in August of that year, Lee announced the launch of Stan Lee's Sunday Comics, hosted by Komikwerks.com, where monthly subscribers could read a new, updated comic and "Stan's Soapbox" every Sunday. The column has not been updated since February 15, 2005.
In 2006, Marvel commemorated Lee's 65 years with the company by publishing a series of one-shot comics starring Lee himself meeting and interacting with many of his co-creations, including Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, the Thing, Silver Surfer and Doctor Doom. These comics also featured short pieces by such comics creators as Joss Whedon and Fred Hembeck, as well as reprints of classic Lee-written adventures.
On March 15, 2007, Stan Lee Media's new president, Jim Nesfield, filed a lawsuit against Marvel Entertainment for $5 billion, claiming that the company is co-owner of the characters that Lee created for Marvel. On June 9, 2007, Stan Lee Media sued Lee; his newer company, POW! Entertainment; POW! subsidiary QED Entertainment; and other former Stan Lee Media staff at POW!
At the 2007 Comic-Con International, Marvel Legends introduced a Stan Lee action figure. The body beneath the figure's removable cloth wardrobe is a re-used mold of a previously released Spider-Man action figure, with minor changes.
In 2008, Lee wrote humorous captions for the political fumetti book Stan Lee Presents Election Daze: What Are They Really Saying?. In April of that year, at the New York Comic Con, Viz Media announced that Lee and Hiroyuki Takei were collaborating on the manga Karakuridôji Ultimo, from parent company Shueisha. That same month, Brighton Partners and Rainmaker Animation announced a partnership POW! to produce a CGI film series, Legion of 5. That same month, Virgin Comics announced Lee would create a line of superhero comics for that company. He is also working on a TV adaptation of the novel Hero. He wrote the foreword to the 2010 non-fiction e-book memoir Skyscraperman by skyscraper fire-safety advocate Dan Goodwin, who had climbed skyscrapers dressed as Spider-Man.
In August 2011, Lee announced his support for the Eagle Initiative, a program to find new talent in the comic book field.
In 2011, Lee was writing a live-action musical, The Yin and Yang Battle of Tao. In October, Lee announced he would partner with 1821 Comics on a multimedia imprint for children, Stan Lee’s Kids Universe, a move he said addressed the lack of comic books targeted for children; and that he was collaborating with the company on its futuristic graphic novel Romeo & Juliet: The War, by writer Max Work and artist Skan Srisuwan.
In April 2012, Lee announced his partnership with Regina Carpinelli, the founder and CEO of Comikaze Expo. Comikaze Expo, Los Angeles' largest comic book convention, was rebranded as Stan Lee's Comikaze Presented by POW! Entertainment.
At the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con International, Lee announced his new YouTube channel, Stan Lee's World of Heroes, which airs several programs created by Lee and other creators, including Mark Hamill, Peter David, Adrianne Curry and Bonnie Burton.
It was announced in February 2013 that one of Lee's recently-created characters, the Annihilator, a Chinese prisoner-turned-superhero named Ming, would be adapted into a film written by Dan Gilroy and produced by Barry Josephson.
The Stan Lee Foundation was founded in 2010 to focus on literacy, education and the arts. Its stated goals include supporting programs and ideas that improve access to literacy resources, as well as promoting diversity, national literacy, culture and the arts.
Awards and honors
- Lee has received several awards for his work, including being inducted into the comic book industry's The Will Eisner Award Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Jack Kirby Hall of Fame in 1995.
- On November 17, 2008, Stan Lee was awarded the National Medal of Arts.
- The County of Los Angeles declared October 2, 2009 Stan Lee Day.
- The City of Long Beach declared October 2, 2009 Stan Lee Day.
- Lee won the Comic-Con Icon Award 2009 at Scream Awards.
- Lee received the 2,428th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 4, 2011.
- On January 21, 2012, Lee received the Vanguard Award from the Producers Guild of America.
Stan Lee and his collaborator Jack Kirby appear as themselves in The Fantastic Four #10 (Jan. 1963), the first of several appearances within the fictional Marvel Universe. The two are depicted as similar to their real-world counterparts, creating comic books based on the "real" adventures of the Fantastic Four.
Kirby later portrayed himself, Lee, production executive Sol Brodsky, and Lee's secretary Flo Steinberg as superheroes in What If #11 (Oct 1978), "What If the Marvel Bullpen Had Become the Fantastic Four?", in which Lee played the part of Mister Fantastic. Lee has also made numerous cameo appearances in many Marvel titles, appearing in audiences and crowds at many characters' ceremonies and parties, and hosting an old-soldiers reunion in Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos #100 (July 1972). Lee appeared, unnamed, as the priest at Luke Cage and Jessica Jones' wedding in New Avengers Annual #1 (June 2006). He pays his respects to Karen Page at her funeral in Daredevil vol. 2, #8 (June 1998), and appears in The Amazing Spider-Man #169 (June 1977).
In Marvel's "Flashback" series of titles cover-dated July 1997, a top-hatted caricature of Lee as a ringmaster introduced stories that detailed events in Marvel characters' lives before they became superheroes, in special "-1" editions of many Marvel titles. The "ringmaster" depiction of Lee was originally from Generation X #17 (July 1996), where the character narrated a story set primarily in an abandoned circus. Though the story itself was written by Scott Lobdell, the narration by "Ringmaster Stan" was written by Lee, and the character was drawn in that issue by Chris Bachalo.
Lee and other comics creators are mentioned on page 479 of Michael Chabon's 2000 novel about the comics industry The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay. Chabon also acknowledges a debt to Lee and other creators on the book's Author's Note page.
In Stan Lee Meets Superheroes, which Lee wrote, he comes into contact with some of his favorite creations.
Stan Lee and Jack Kirby appear as professors in Marvel Adventures Spider-Man #19.
Film and television appearances
- One of Lee's earliest contributions to animation based on Marvel properties was narrating the 1980s Incredible Hulk animated series, always beginning his narration with a self-introduction and ending with "This is Stan Lee saying, Excelsior!" Lee had previously narrated the "Seven Little Superheroes" episode of Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, which the Hulk series was paired with for broadcast.
- Lee did the narration for the original 1989 X-Men animated series pilot titled X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men.
- Lee was an executive producer of the 1990s animated TV series Spider-Man. He appeared as himself in animated form in the series finale episode titled "Farewell, Spider-Man". Spider-Man is transported by Madame Web into the "real" world where he is a fictional character. He meets Lee and the two swing around until Spider-Man drops him off on top of a building; Madame Web appears and brings Spider-Man back to his homeworld. Realizing he is stuck on a roof, Lee muses, hoping the Fantastic Four will show up and lend a hand.
- He also voices the character "Frank Elson" in an episode of Spider-Man: The New Animated Series series broadcast by MTV in 2003, and titled "Mind Games" (Parts 1 & 2, originally aired on August 15 & 22, 2003).
- He voiced a loading dock worker named Stan on The Spectacular Spider-Man in the episode "Blueprints".
- In the pilot episode of The Superhero Squad Show, Lee voices the mayor of the city, preparing to give away the city's key when disaster strikes.
- Lee has appeared in episodes of the Disney XD TV series Ultimate Spider-Man as a high school janitor named Stan, in which he makes references to Lee's real-life career. In the pilot "Great Power" and the episode "Why I Hate Gym", he mentions Irving Forbush, a character Lee co-created in 1955 as a literary device. Stan the Janitor also appears in Episode 18, "Out of Damage Control", as a part-time worker for Damage Control.
- In the TV-movie The Trial of the Incredible Hulk (1989), Lee's first appearance in a Marvel movie or TV project is as a jury foreman in the trial of Dr. David Banner.
Lee has had cameo appearances in many films based on Marvel characters that he created or co-created:
- In X-Men (2000), Lee appears as a hotdog stand vendor on the beach when Senator Kelly emerges naked onshore after escaping from Magneto.
- In Spider-Man (2002), he appeared during Spider-Man's first battle with the Green Goblin, pulling a little girl away from falling debris. In the DVD's deleted scenes, Lee plays a street vendor who tries to sell Peter Parker a pair of sunglasses "just like the X-Men wear."
- In Daredevil (2003), as a child, Matt Murdock stops Lee from crossing the street and getting hit by a bus.
- In Hulk (2003), he appears walking alongside former TV-series Hulk Lou Ferrigno in an early scene, both as security guards at Bruce Banner's lab. It was his first speaking role in a film based on one of his characters.
- In Spider-Man 2 (2004), Lee pulls an innocent person away from danger during Spider-Man's first battle with Doctor Octopus. In a deleted scene that appears as an extra on the film's DVD release, Lee has another cameo, saying, "Look, Spider-Man stole that child's sneakers."
- In Fantastic Four (2005), Lee appears for the first time as a character that he created for the comics, Willie Lumpkin, the mail carrier who greets the Fantastic Four as they enter the Baxter Building.
- In X-Men: The Last Stand (2006), Lee and Chris Claremont appear as two of Jean Grey's neighbors in the opening scenes set 20 years ago. Lee, credited as "Waterhose man," is watering the lawn when Jean telekinetically redirects the water from the hose into the air.
- In Spider-Man 3 (2007), Lee appears in a credited role as "Man in Times Square". He stands next to Peter Parker, both of them reading a news bulletin about Spider-Man, and commenting to Peter that, "You know, I guess one person can make a difference". He then says his catch phrase, "'Nuff said."
- In Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007), Lee appears as himself at Reed Richards' and Susan Storm's first wedding, being turned away by a security guard for not being on the guest list. (In Fantastic Four Annual No.3 (1965), in which the couple married, Lee and Jack Kirby are similarly turned away.)
- In Iron Man (2008), Lee (credited as "Himself") appears at a gala cavorting with three blonds, where Tony Stark mistakes him for Hugh Hefner. In the theatrical release of the film, Stark simply greets Lee as "Hef" and moves on; another version of the scene was filmed where Stark realizes his mistake, but Lee graciously responds, "That's okay, I get this all the time."
- In The Incredible Hulk (2008), Lee appears as a hapless citizen who accidentally ingests a soft drink mixed with Bruce Banner's blood, leading to the discovery of Dr. Banner's location in a bottling plant in Brazil.
- In Iron Man 2 (2010), during the Stark Expo, Lee, wearing suspenders and a red shirt and black and purple tie, is greeted by Tony Stark as "Larry King".
- In Thor (2011), Lee appears among many people at the site where Thor's hammer Mjolnir lands on earth. He tears the bed off his pickup truck in an attempt to pull Mjolnir out of the ground with a chain and causes everyone to laugh by asking, "Did it work?".
- In Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), this time portraying a general in World War II, who mistakes another man for Captain America/Steve Rogers, commenting, "I thought he'd be taller."
- In The Avengers (2012), Lee makes a cameo appearance as a random citizen in the park asked about the Avengers saving Manhattan. Lee's character responds, "Superheroes in New York? Give me a break", and then returns to his game of chess. He also appears in a deleted scene, apparently as the same character: when a waitress flirts with Steve Rogers, he says to him, "Ask for her number, you moron!"
- In The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), Lee makes a cameo as a librarian at Midtown Science High School, oblivious to the fight between Spider-Man and the Lizard happening behind him.
In the original February 7, 1998, broadcast airing of the Superman: The Animated Series episode "Apokolips... Now! Part 2" on the Kids' WB programming block, an animated Stan Lee was visible mourning the death of Daniel "Terrible" Turpin, a character based on his longtime Marvel Comics collaborator Jack Kirby. This shot was later modified to remove the likeness of Lee and other of background Marvel characters when the episode was released on DVD.
Other film, TV, and video
- In the 1990s, Lee hosted the documentary series The Comic Book Greats and interviewed notable comic book creators such as Chris Claremont, Jim Lee, Todd McFarlane, Rob Liefeld and Whilce Portacio.
- Lee has an extensive cameo in the 1995 Kevin Smith film Mallrats. He plays himself, this time visiting the mall to sign books at a comic store. Later, he takes on the role of a sage-like character, giving Jason Lee's character, Brodie Bruce (a longtime fan of Stan's), advice on his love life. He also recorded interviews with Smith for the non-fiction video Stan Lee's Mutants, Monsters, and Marvels (2002).
- Lee is the host of the 2010 History Channel documentary series Stan Lee's Superhumans.
- Lee makes a cameo appearance as the "Three Stooges Wedding Guest" in the 2004 Disney film The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement.
- Lee hosted and judged contestants in the SyFy series Who Wants to Be a Superhero?
- Lee appears with director Kevin Smith and 2000s Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada in the DVD program Marvel Then & Now: An Evening with Stan Lee and Joe Quesada, hosted by Kevin Smith.
- Lee was interviewed on the History Channel show Superhuman by Daniel Browning Smith, who held several Guinness Records for extreme flexibility due to having Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a genetic condition affecting collagen formation. Smith had created his own comic book to display his own struggles as an outcast for his flexibility, and legitimately surprised Lee with a quick demonstration of his talent.
- In the animated series Jim Henson's Muppet Babies, Lee plays himself in a live-action scene of the "Comic Capers" episode.
- Lee appeared as himself in an extended self-parodying sketch on the episode "Tapping a Hero" of Robot Chicken.
- Lee appears as himself in writer-director Larry Cohen's The Ambulance (1990), in which Eric Roberts plays an aspiring comics artist.
- In "I Am Furious Yellow", the April 28, 2002, episode of The Simpsons, Lee voices the animated Stan Lee, who is a prolonged visitor to Comic Book Guy's store. He asks if Comic Book Guy is the stalker of Lynda Carter – the star of the 1970s show Wonder Woman – and shows signs of dementia, such as breaking a customer's toy Batmobile by trying to cram a Thing action figure into it (claiming that he "made it better"), hiding DC comics behind Marvel comics, and believing that he is the Hulk (and fails trying to become the Hulk, while Comic Book Guy comments he couldn't even change into Bill Bixby). Lee also appeared on the commentary track along with other Simpsons writers and directors on the episode for The Simpsons Season 13 box set released in 2010. In a later Simpsons episode, "Worst Episode Ever", Lee's picture is seen next to several others on the wall behind the register, under the heading "Banned for life".
- Lee appears as himself in the Mark Hamill-directed Comic Book: The Movie (2004), a direct-to-video mockumentary primarily filmed at the 2002 San Diego Comic-Con.
- Lee made an appearance on December 21, 2006, on the NBC game show Identity.
- Lee appeared as himself in "The Excelsior Acquisition", a third season episode of The Big Bang Theory, in March 2010. He appears at the front door of his house wearing Fantastic Four pajamas, ultimately calling back into the house, "Joanie, call the police!" to get rid of Sheldon, who showed up after missing a comic book signing at the local store.
- Lee voices the Mayor of Superhero City in the Super Hero Squad Show.
- He plays a bus driver in the 16th episode of the first season of Heroes.
- Lee makes a guest appearance as himself in "Bottom's Up", a season seven episode of the TV series Entourage. He guest-starred in "Glimpse", a season four episode of Eureka that aired in July 2011.
- Lee appears in "The Guardian", the October 7, 2010, episode of Nikita, as Hank Excelsior, a witness to a bank robbery who is interviewed by a TV reporter.
- Lee was interviewed in the 2011 documentary Superheroes.
- Lee is scheduled to appear on X Japan's music video "Born to be Free".
- Lee portrayed himself at a CIA holiday party in the fifth season of Chuck, in which it is revealed in that universe he secretly works for the government and has a romantic interest in General Beckman.
- Stan Lee appeared in the eleventh episode of season five of The Guild, in which he was captured at a convention by the character Zaboo's Master Chief cosplaying henchmen.[episode needed]
- Stan Lee portrayed a future version of Tony Stark in "Episode 205 – The Future!" of the comedy web series Avengers Assemble!. In this episode, he delivered from the future a cryptic message to the rest of his fellow Avengers, but constantly frustrated his companions due to his ineptness with the technology of his future era.
- He was the subject of an April 2012 Epix cable-network documentary, “With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story.”
Video games and applications
- Lee narrates the 2000 video game Spider-Man, the 2001 sequel Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro and 2010's Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions.
- Lee made his first-ever onscreen video game appearance as a senator named after himself in Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2.
- Lee narrates the The Avengers Origins: Hulk and Avengers Origins: Assemble! apps for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, which were released by Disney Publishing Worldwide in February 2012.
- Lee is a playable character in Activision's The Amazing Spider-Man video game, which was released in June 2012, as a tie-in to the film of the same name. In the game, Lee is depicted as having the same superpowers as Spider-Man, and uses them to retrieve the pages of a new comic book manuscript that he had lost and were subsequently scattered around Manhattan. He also voices a character with his first name in the main story mode, who calls Peter about the charges to his credit card when Peter's walking to Dr. Connor's sewer lab.
Lee's favorite authors include Stephen King, H. G. Wells, Mark Twain, Arthur Conan Doyle, William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, and Harlan Ellison. He is also a fan of the films of Bruce Lee.
Lee was raised in a Jewish family. In a 2002 survey of whether he believes in God, he stated, "Well, let me put it this way... [Pauses.] No, I'm not going to try to be clever. I really don't know. I just don't know."
Lee's comics work includes:
- DC Comics Presents: Superman No. 1 (2004)
- Just Imagine Stan Lee creating:
- Aquaman (with Scott McDaniel) (2002)
- Batman (with Joe Kubert) (2001)
- Catwoman (with Chris Bachalo) (2002)
- Crisis (with John Cassaday) (2002)
- Flash (with Kevin Maguire) (2002)
- Green Lantern (with Dave Gibbons) (2001)
- JLA (with Jerry Ordway) (2002)
- Robin (with John Byrne) (2001)
- Sandman (with Walt Simonson) (2002)
- Secret Files and Origins (2002)
- Shazam! (with Gary Frank) (2001)
- Superman (with John Buscema) (2001)
- Wonder Woman (with Jim Lee) (2001)
- Amazing Spider-Man #1–100, 105–110, 116–118, 200 (1962–80); (backup stories): #634–655 (2010–11)
- Avengers #1–35 (1963–66)
- Captain America #100–141 (1968–71) (continues from Tales of Suspense #99)
- Daredevil, #1–9, 11–50, 53 (1964–69)
- Daredevil, vol. 2, No. 20 (backup story) (2001)
- Epic Illustrated No. 1 (Silver Surfer) (1980)
- Fantastic Four #1–114, 120–125 (1961–72); No. 296 (1986)
- The Incredible Hulk #1–6 (continues to Tales to Astonish #59)
- Journey into Mystery (Thor) plotter #83–96 (1962–63), writer #97–125 (1963–66) (continues to Thor #126)
- Ravage 2099 #1–7 (1992–93)
- Savage She-Hulk No. 1 (1980)
- Sgt. Fury #1–28 (1963–66)
- Silver Surfer #1–18 (1968–70)
- Silver Surfer vol. 2, No. 1 (1982)
- Silver Surfer: Parable #1–2 (1988)
- Solarman #1–2 (1989–90)
- Strange Tales (diverse stories): No. 9, 11, 74, 89, 90–100 (1951–62); (Human Torch): #101–109, 112–133; (Doctor Strange): #110–111, 115–142, 151–158 (1962–67); (Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.: #135–147, 150–152 (1965–67)
- Tales to Astonish (diverse stories): No. 1, 6, 12–13, 15–17, 24–33 (1956–62); Ant-Man/Giant Man: #35–69 (1962–65) (Incredible Hulk: #59–101 (1964–1968); Sub-Mariner: #70–101 (1965–68)
- Tales of Suspense (diverse stories): No. 7, 9, 16, 22, 27, 29–30 (1959–62); (Iron Man): plotter #39–46 (1963), writer #47–98 (1963–68) (Captain America): #58–86, 88-99 (1964–68)
- Thor #126–192, 200 (1966–72), 385 (1987)
- What If (Fantastic Four) No. 200 (2011)
- The X-Men #1–19 (1963–66)
- Characters created by Stan Lee
- List of American comics creators
- List of American Jews
- List of Eisner Award winners
- List of Harvey Award winners
- List of Jewish American authors
- List of Marvel Comics people
- List of science fiction authors
- List of pseudonyms
- Lee, Stan; Mair, George (2002). Excelsior!: The Amazing Life of Stan Lee. Fireside Books. p. 5. ISBN 0-684-87305-2.
- The Celebrity who's who – World Almanac – Google Books. Books.google.ca. 1986-09. ISBN 9780345339904. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
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- Lee and Mair, p. 17
- Sedlmeier, Cory (Editor). Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk Volume 2. Marvel Comics. Page 244.
- Lee and Mair, p. 18
- "I Let People Do Their Jobs!': A Conversation with Vince Fago—Artist, Writer, and Third Editor-in-Chief of Timely/Marvel Comics". Alter Ego 3 (11) (TwoMorrows Publishing). November 2001. Archived from the original on November 24, 2009.
- Lee's account of how he began working for Marvel's predecessor, Timely, has varied. He has said in lectures and elsewhere that he simply answered a newspaper ad seeking a publishing assistant, not knowing it involved comics, let alone his cousin's husband:
I applied for a job in a publishing company ... I didn't even know they published comics. I was fresh out of high school, and I wanted to get into the publishing business, if I could. There was an ad in the paper that said, "Assistant Wanted in a Publishing House." When I found out that they wanted me to assist in comics, I figured, 'Well, I'll stay here for a little while and get some experience, and then I'll get out into the real world'. ... I just wanted to know, 'What do you do in a publishing company?' How do you write? ... How do you publish? I was an assistant. There were two people there named Joe Simon and Jack Kirby – Joe was sort-of the editor/artist/writer, and Jack was the artist/writer. Joe was the senior member. They were turning out most of the artwork. Then there was the publisher, Martin Goodman.... And that was about the only staff that I was involved with. After a while, Joe Simon and Jack Kirby left. I was about 17 years old [sic], and Martin Goodman said to me, 'Do you think you can hold down the job of editor until I can find a real person?' When you're 17, what do you know? I said, 'Sure! I can do it!' I think he forgot about me, because I stayed there ever since. — Lee, in Plume, Kenneth (June 26, 2000). "Stan Lee interview part 1 of 5". IGN.com. Archived from the original on July 31, 2011. Unknown parameter
However, in his above-cited, 2002 autobiography, Excelsior! The Amazing Life of Stan Lee, he says:My uncle, Robbie Solomon, told me they might be able to use someone at a publishing company where he worked. The idea of being involved in publishing definitely appealed to me. ... So I contacted the man Robbie said did the hiring, Joe Simon, and applied for a job. He took me on and I began working as a gofer for eight dollars a week....One day [Goodman's relative known as] Uncle Robbie came to work with a lanky 17-year-old in tow. 'This is Stanley Lieber, Martin's wife's cousin', Uncle Robbie said. 'Martin wants you to keep him busy.'
In an appendix, however, Simon appears to reconcile the two accounts. He relates a 1989 conversation with Lee:Lee: I've been saying this [classified-ad] story for years, but apparently it isn't so. And I can't remember because I['ve] said it so long now that I believe it".
...Simon: "Well, Stan, you told me seventeen. You were probably trying to be older.... I did hire you."
Simon: "Your Uncle Robbie brought you into the office one day and he said, 'This is Martin Goodman's wife's nephew'. [sic] ... You were seventeen years old".
Lee: "Sixteen and a half!"
- Lee, Mair, p. 22
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- Thomas, Stan Lee's Amazing Marvel Universe, pp. 12–13
- Thomas, Roy; Stan Lee (2006). Stan Lee's Amazing Marvel Universe. Sterling Publishing. p. 14. ISBN 1-4027-4225-8.
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- Lee, Mair, page ???
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- Noted comic-book writer Alan Moore described the significance of this new approach in a radio interview on the BBC Four program Chain Reaction, transcribed at "Alan Moore Chain Reaction Interview Transcript". Comic Book Resources. January 27, 2005. Archived from the original on November 8, 2010.:
The DC comics were ... one dimensional characters whose only characteristic was they dressed up in costumes and did good. Whereas Stan Lee had this huge breakthrough of two-dimensional characters. So, they dress up in costumes and do good, but they've got a bad heart. Or a bad leg. I actually did think for a long while that having a bad leg was an actual character trait.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Stan Lee|
- POW! Entertainment (official site)
- "Biography". StanLeeWeb.com (fan site by minority shareholders of POW! Entertainment. Archived from the original on October 24, 2008. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
- McCave, Joseph. "SDCC 2009: Stan Lee Talks 'Time Jumper'!" FearNet.com, July 27, 2009
- Framingham, Mass. "Myth and the Hero's Journey: Big Screen Blockbusters – Star Wars, Spider-Man Tell Timeless Tales", Daily News (May 5, 2002), by Chris Bergeron
- Archive of "Fast Chat: Stan Lee". Newsday, April 1, 2007. Online version March 31, 2007.
- Stan Lee at ComiCon in Seattle
- Stan Lee at the Unofficial Handbook of Marvel Comics Creators
- Stan Lee at the Comic Book DB
- Stan Lee at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
- Stan Lee at the Internet Movie Database
- Audio of Merry Marvel Marching Society record, including voice of Stan Lee
- "Stan Lee". (video interviews) WebOfStories.com. undated.
- Comic Geek Speak: Episode 83 – Stan Lee interview podcast, December 12, 2005
- Mahalo Daily with Veronica Belmont: "MD044 – Stan Lee Interview", January 28, 2008
- Stan Lee receives 1st New York comics legend award April 17, 2008
- "Authors@Google: Stan Lee", Authors@Google, "AtGoogleTalks", YouTube, July 18, 2008. (Video podcast)
- Conan, Neal (October 27, 2010). "Stan Lee, Mastermind of the Marvel Universe". Talk of the Nation (National Public Radio). (Radio broadcast)
|Marvel Comics Editor-in-Chief
|Marvel Comics Editor-in-Chief
|Fantastic Four writer
|Fantastic Four writer
|The Amazing Spider-Man writer
|The Amazing Spider-Man writer
|The Incredible Hulk writer
(including Tales to Astonish stories)
|The Incredible Hulk writer
(including Journey into Mystery stories)
(with Larry Lieber in 1962)
(with Robert Bernstein in 1963)
|The Avengers writer
|(Uncanny) X-Men writer
|Captain America writer
(including Tales of Suspense stories)
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