According to Variety, longtime Marvel president, Victoria Alonso, who had been in charge of physical production, post-production, VFX, and animation, was reportedly fired as per instructed by Disney co-chair Alan Bergman.
Alonso’s abrupt exit from the company took many onlookers by surprise as per the report. Known in the company as one of the most influential producers, Alonso embarked on her journey with Disney in 2006. Her work goes back as far as 2008 with the release of 2008’s Iron Man, where she was a co-producer and visual effects producer.
With no official statement, it’s unclear why Alonso was let go, though issues concerning Marvel’s visual effects didn’t really come as a surprise for some time now, as can be seen with Ant-Man & The Wasp: Quantumania, the latest MCU project that wasn’t received very positively. Additionally, Variety reported Alonso stated the decision “blindsided” her. Her direct reporting head, Kevin Feige, stated he was not involved in the decision.
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Disney was contacted by IGN but did not respond upon being asked to provide a statement on the subject matter.
Marvel’s visual effects problem
Given the fact that Marvel Studios has grown exponentially since the early 2000s, and has diversified across so many platforms, it is only natural that production and VFX teams would come under significant pressure. Interviews conducted by IGN with several VFX artists back in 2022 revealed tight deadlines and persistent criticism had become a norm amidst the fear of being blacklisted in the industry.
A senior animator at Marvel Studios Animation spoke up about how the “mini studio” wanted quality work in such a short span of time that it just wasn’t feasible. states: “We’re in-house. We’re paid well. I do feel like we’re padded by money. But it doesn’t change the fact that they’re asking for things that can’t be done.”
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While it’s hard to deny that Alonso had a significantly big hand in Disney’s overall strategy, there have been many who have held back when it came to accusing her of the VFX issues faced by Marvel Studios.
“[Alonso] was the epitome of professional, and knows her stuff,” states a former Disney film executive to Variety.
The reason for Alonso’s sudden departure only matters so much, as the studio is about to get into Phase 5 of its planned timeline, and with another longtime veteran down amid the loss of a key player in the franchise, Marvel Studios is going to be taking a lot of heat from audiences and critics if the superhero franchise doesn’t deliver.