Wearing a purple shirt, Mark Ruffalo smiles as Bruce Banner in Avengers

Mark Ruffalo Disses Star Wars While Praising Marvel Cinematic Universe

They're both owned by Disney, Hulk.

Mark Ruffalo might have Ruffalo’d some feathers (I’m sorry) with his latest interview promoting She-Hulk. The actor, who has played Bruce Banner/the Hulk for a decade in the Marvel cinematic universe, was discussing the longevity of Marvel films. In an interview with Metro, he addressed MCU fatigue saying, “It’s not something I worry about. I understand that these things run their course and then something else comes along. But the thing Marvel has done well is that, inside the MCU, just as they do with comic books, they let a director or an actor sort of recreate each piece to their own style, their likeness. Marvel generally lets them bring that to the material.”

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It’s no surprise that Ruffalo is cheerleading the company that employs him, but many would disagree that Marvel really lets its creators run loose. Despite inspired entries from directors like Taika Waititi and James Gunn, there is a house style to the Marvel formula, from visuals and effects to a buoyant, comedic tone. But Marvel is pushing its own creative boundaries, most notably in series like WandaVision and Loki, which take bigger risks in genre and storytelling than the theatrical films do.

Ruffalo then negged Star Wars, saying “If you watch a Star Wars, you’re pretty much going to get the same version of Star Wars each time. It might have a little bit of humour. It might have a little bit of different animation. But you’re always, really, in that same kind of world. But with Marvel you can have a whole different feeling even within the Marvel Universe.”

Both massive brands are owned by Disney, but there differences. Star Wars lacks a unified leadership under someone like Marvel’s Kevin Feige, but there is clearly some kind of interconnected plan within the Star Wars universe. As for the sameness, well … maybe Star Wars could stop focusing their content on the Skywalker saga? Or at least give us a story that isn’t set on Tatooine? The very best Star Wars offerings in recent memory, namely The Mandalorian, are successful because they bring in new and interesting characters and worlds. For me, the new Star Wars films and series stumble when they’re yoked to the storylines and continuity of the original trilogy.

Of course, both Star Wars and the MCU are beholden to decades of fandom and mythology. And more than that, they’re beholden to the Disney industrial complex. For some fans, comparing the two is akin to comparing apples and oranges. And for others, well … it’s all just fruit.

Do you agree with Ruffalo’s assertion about Star Wars and the MCU? Let us know in the comments.

(via Metro, featured image: Marvel Studios)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.