Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson pays emotional tribute to Marvel legend Stan Lee
Stan Lee, the granddaddy of so many of Marvel's superheroes, (such as Spiderman, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Black Panther, and the X-Men), has died at the age of 95. For many generations, Stan Lee was the face of Marvel comics, and it was he who was credited with giving the publisher its unique voice and popularity during its fledgeling years. Even if you didn't regularly read his columns (addressed to so-called "true believers") then you'd probably still recognise him, due to his many cameos throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe and beyond. It was Lee who revitalised the ailing superhero genre in the 60s with wild and bold new stories about flawed superheroes and interconnected storylines.
A number of heartfelt tributes to Lee have poured in, from comic writers, artists, colourists, letterers, and even from Hollywood actors and directors. Now Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson has paid tribute to the legend himself on social media. As it turns out, the two of them were actually close friends.
Johnson uploaded a picture of himself a Lee together, and captioned the photo: "We lost a good one. What a man and what a life. Marvel’s original superhero and co-creator of IRON MAN, SPIDER-MAN, THE HULK, X-MEN etc. When I first broke into Hollywood, years ago he was so warm and welcoming to me - I’ll never forget it. He gave me very sage advice on navigating a career, that I’ll always carry. What a life he’s lived and how awesome that his imagination and universe creation impacted generations around the world. And for generations to come. Rest in love, my friend. [sic]"
Stan Lee himself was indeed always a great supporter of The Rock. In a 2017 interview Lee stated: "[Johnson] is one of the best action actors in the business, one of the nicest guys in the business, one of the biggest, strongest guys in the business, and when you see him I want you to remember he was a 97lbs until I gave him all those instructions and how to build himself up."
Other actors involved in the Marvel movies have also written about Stan Lee's profound influence. Actor Hugh Jackman, who played Wolverine in the X-Men movies, took to Instagram to write: "We’ve lost a creative genius. Stan Lee was a pioneering force in the superhero universe. I’m proud to have been a small part of his legacy and …. to have helped bring one of his characters to life."
Meanwhile, Captain America actor Chris Evans wrote on Twitter: "There will never be another Stan Lee. For decades he provided both young and old with adventure, escape, comfort, confidence, inspiration, strength, friendship and joy. He exuded love and kindness and will leave an indelible mark on so, so, so many lives. Excelsior!"
Rest in peace Stan: you brought joy and excitement to so many people. You will be missed.