With the release of Spider-Man: Far From Home, marking the end of Phase 3 and the Infinity Saga, I think it is only fitting that we honor the life of the Legend that is Stan Lee with a highlight on his cameo’s in the Movies of the MCU.
Stan Lee was an American comic book writer, editor, publisher, and producer as well as executive vice president and publisher of Marvel Comics.
Stan was born in New York City on December 28th 1922 to Celia (Solomon) and Jack Lieber. His parents were Romanian Jewish immigrants. Lee co-created Spider-Man, the Hulk, Doctor Strange, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Daredevil, Thor, the X-Men, and many other fictional characters, introducing a thoroughly shared universe into superhero comic books. In addition, he challenged the comics’ industry’s censorship organization, the Comics Code Authority, indirectly leading to it updating its policies. Lee subsequently led the expansion of Marvel Comics from a small division of a publishing house to a large multimedia corporation.
He had cameo appearances in many Marvel film and television projects, with more yet to come, posthumously.
On 16 July 2017, Lee was named a Disney Legend, a hall of fame program that recognizes individuals who have made an extraordinary and integral contribution to The Walt Disney Company.
Stan was married to Joan Lee for almost 70 years, until her death. The couple had two children. Joan died on July 6, 2017.
Stan died on November 12, 2018, in LA.
Stan Lee’s MCU Movie Cameo’s
In Iron Man, Lee, credited as “Himself”, appears at a gala cavorting with three blondes, where Tony Stark mistakes him for Hugh Hefner. In the theatrical release of the film, Stark simply greets Lee as “Hef” and moves on; another version of the scene was filmed where Stark realizes his mistake, but Lee graciously responds, “That’s okay, I get this all the time.”
In The Incredible Hulk, Lee appears as a hapless citizen who accidentally ingests a drink mixed with Bruce Banner’s blood, which gave him a little more kick than he is looking for while saying, “Wow.” He subsequently drops it and falls ill, leading to the discovery of Dr. Banner’s location.
In Iron Man 2, during the Stark Expo, Lee, wearing suspenders and a red shirt and black and purple tie, is mistakenly greeted by Tony Stark as “Larry King”.
In Thor, Lee appears among many people at the site where Thor’s hammer Mjolnir lands on earth. He tears the bed off his pickup truck in an attempt to pull Mjolnir out of the ground and causes everyone in the scene to laugh by asking, “Did it work?”. His character is credited as “Stan the Man”, a nickname he had adopted in the Silver Age of Comic Books.
In Captain America: The First Avenger, Lee plays a general in World War II who mistakes another man for Captain America, commenting, “I thought he’d be taller.”
In The Avengers, Lee’s character is interviewed about the Avengers saving Manhattan. Lee’s character responds, “Superheroes in New York? Give me a break”, and then returns to his game of chess. He also appears in a deleted scene in which, when a waitress flirts with Steve Rogers, Lee says to him, “Ask for her number, you moron!”
In Iron Man 3, Lee portrays a beauty pageant judge who appears on a television monitor and happily gives one of the contestants a 10.
In Thor: The Dark World, Lee appears as a mental ward patient who loans his shoe to Erik Selvig for a demonstration about “the Convergence” in his delusions. When Selvig finishes and asks if anyone has questions, Lee says, “Yeah, can I have my shoe back?”.
In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Lee plays a security guard at the Smithsonian Institution who after discovering that Captain America stole his own World War II uniform from an exhibit, says, “Oh man, I am so fired”.
In Guardians of the Galaxy, Lee appears as an elderly gentleman having a conversation with a significantly younger woman. Rocket, viewing him through a scanning device, dismisses him as part of what he saw was wrong with the planet Xandar.
In Avengers: Age of Ultron, he appears as a World War II veteran who attends the Avengers’ victory party. He claims he fought at Omaha Beach and that it proves he can handle a shot of Asgardian liquor from Thor, but is then carried away drunk, muttering his catchphrase, “Excelsior”. Lee noted that this was his favorite cameo.
In Ant-Man, Lee appears as a bartender in a story Luis tells to Scott Lang explaining that Falcon was looking for him. His part in the story is encouraging Luis’s cousin, and the informer of the story, Ignacio, to talk to a “crazy stupid fine” woman at a table separate of the bar.
In Captain America: Civil War, Lee appears as a FedEx postman, delivering a package from Steve Rogers to Tony Stark at the end of the film, mispronouncing Stark’s name as “Tony Stank”.
In Doctor Strange, Lee appears as a bus rider reading Aldous Huxley’s The Doors of Perception while laughing that what he is reading is hilarious, oblivious to a battle between Doctor Strange and Mordo and Kaecilius and his followers.
In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Lee appears as an astronaut telling a story to The Watchers, mentioning his stint as a deliveryman in Civil War. He appears again in the post credits scenes, where the Watchers leave, tired of his stories as he quotes to them that they are his only ride back to Earth.
In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Lee appears as an annoyed neighbor named Gary who, after witnessing Spider-Man mistakenly accosting an innocent civilian says to him, “Don’t make me come down there, you punk!” His other neighbor, Marjorie, greets him, asking about his family’s welfare, while he does the same to her, asking about her mother.
In Thor: Ragnarok, Lee appears as a servant to the Grandmaster on Sakaar who cuts Thor’s hair. Beforehand, he asks Thor to be still, saying, “My hands aren’t as steady as they used to be”.
In Black Panther, Lee appears as a patron of a casino in Busan, South Korea, and takes T’Challa’s won but unclaimed casino tokens.
In Avengers: Infinity War, Lee appears as the driver of Peter Parker’s school bus. When the students on the bus watch Ebony Maw’s ship arriving, the driver says, “What’s the matter with you kids? You never seen a spaceship before?”
In Ant-Man and the Wasp, Lee appears as a pedestrian whose car is shrunk by Wasp. He remarks, “Well the ’60s were fun, but now I’m paying for it”.
In Captain Marvel, Lee makes a posthumous appearance as himself, riding on a subway train and reading his lines from the screenplay for the film Mallrats. When he sees Carol Danvers, he smiles at her, and she smiles back. The Marvel Studios logo at the beginning of the film also pays tribute to Lee, with his MCU cameo appearances being incorporated into the logo and ending with the message “Thank You Stan”.
In Avengers: Endgame, Lee makes a posthumous appearance, digitally de-aged as a car driver in 1970, driving past army base Camp Lehigh and shouting, “Hey man, make love, not war!” The scene also features Lee alongside a digital recreation of his wife, Joan Boocock Lee, as she appeared in the year 1970. This was the final MCU film to feature a Stan Lee cameo.