Stan Lee, arguably the best known comic book creator of all-time, passed away Monday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
He was 95 years old.
Lee’s daughter confirmed this very sad piece of news to TMZ.
The website writes that Lee was rushed from his home in Hollywood Hills to the aforementioned facility, although it’s unclear at this time what medical condition prompted the emergency.
The legendary writer, however, had suffered numerous illnesses over the last year or so, including a semi-recent bout of pneumonia and a number of vision issues.
He had receded from the public eye for most of 2018 as a result.
Lee started out in the comic business back in 1939.
Along with Jack Kirby, he co-founded Marvel in 1961 via the introduction of The Fantastic Four.
He went on to create Spider-Man, Black Panther, The Incredible Hulk, X-Men, Iron Man and The Avengers, among many other notable, memorable and beloved characters.
Lee was always revered in the comic book universe, but he became a true pop culture icon about a decade ago after the success of the first Iron Man movie.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has basically taken over the movie world in that time and Lee has made a cameo in every Marvel film to date.
In 2009, the Walt Disney Co. bought Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion.
Three years later, The Avengers grossed $1.52 billion worldwide take and two years after that, Lee acknowledged his important role not just in the entertainment industry — but in the world as a whole.
“I used to think what I did was not very important,” he told the Chicago Tribune in April of 2014, adding at the time:
“People are building bridges and engaging in medical research, and here I was doing stories about fictional people who do extraordinary, crazy things and wear costumes.
“But I suppose I have come to realize that entertainment is not easily dismissed.”
A native of Manhattan, Lee wrote, art-directed and edited most of Marvel’s series and newspaper strips.
He also wrote a monthly comics’ column, “Stan’s Soapbox,” signing off with his signature phrase, “Excelsior!”
Lee played a vital role as Marvel transitioned into TV during the 1980s, serving as narrator on animated series like Incredible Hulk and X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men, and executive producing the 1990s animated series Spider-Man.
In 2002, Lee published an autobiography, Excelsior! The Amazing Life of Stan Lee.
Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse will be the next installment of the Marvel film franchise and will be released next month; it’s very safe to assume there will be a dedication to Lee in the credits.
The writer’s survivors include a daughter, J.C., and younger brother, Larry Lieber, who works as a writer and artist for Marvel. Another daughter, Jan, died in infancy.
Lee’s wife, Joan, was a hat model whom he married in 1947. She passed away last year.
Said J.C. to TMZ shortly after confirming her dad’s death:
“My father loved all of his fans. He was the greatest, most decent man.”
May he rest in peace.
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