The opinion of four-time Oscar-winning writer, director, and producer Alejandro González Iñárritu (Birdman) about superheroes hasn’t changed in nearly a decade.
During a recent interview with Variety, he called superheroes “sad figures” before going into more detail about why he wasn’t a fan of the genre.
“I see heroes every day,” Iñárritu said. “I see beautiful people really going through very difficult situations and doing incredible things. And that is the people that I kind of connect with. But these kinds of superpower heroes, really do we need that?”
He added: “If you need that, is there something missing … instead of admiring what we have, the possibilities that we have?”
This isn’t the first time Iñárritu has been critical of the genre. In a 2014 interview with Deadline, he called superhero movies “cultural genocide.”
“I would be terrible [at making a superhero film],” he said. “I think there’s nothing wrong with being fixated on superheroes when you are 7 years old, but I think there’s a disease in not growing up.”
The comments came right before the release of his Oscar-winning film Birdman or (the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), which tells the story of a washed-up actor (Michael Keaton) – known for his superhero movies – attempting to make a comeback on Broadway. Keaton, of course, is known for playing the DC Comics superhero Batman in the original 1989 film Batman and its sequel, Batman Returns, in 1992.
When Iñárritu made his initial remarks nine years ago, there weren’t any filmmakers speaking against the superhero genre, so, of course, he got some major pushback from fans. Since then, several high-profile directors have shared their dislike for superhero movies, including Oscar-winning directors Martin Scorsese (The Departed), Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather Part II), and Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog).
“I hate them,” Campion told Variety in 2021. “I actually hate them. They’re so noisy and ridiculous.”