Joss Whedon would like his fans to know that, while he’s doing well, he isn’t pulling down Robert Downey Jr.-size numbers as part of his deal with Marvel.
His comments on Whedonesque follow a story about Downey’s high-stakes negotiations with the notoriously frugal studio for the next two Avengers films, in which Deadline floated that the writer/director “reportedly has a ‘really rich deal’ worth an astronomical $100M for a combination of product and services including several pics, consulting work, a put pilot at ABC, and many other elements that effectively take him off the marketplace for years and years.”
“I was going to let it slide, but I’ve got this sour taste in my mouth. (Mmmm, lemonade!),” Whedon wrote. “Some facts are not facts. I’m not going to go into the whole thing, but jeepers, I’m not getting $100 mil on Avengers 2. If I were, I would come on this site and laugh and laugh and laugh. I’m not making Downey money. I’m making A LOT, which is exciting. I’m not pretending to be a poor farmer, an Everyman, an ANYman. But that number is nuts.”
“Downey money” would the more than $50 million the Iron Man star confirmed he made for The Avengers as part of a lucrative deal involving box-office bonuses and backend compensation; he’s thought to have already earned as much as $35 million for Iron Man 3. By comparison, some of Downey’s Avengers co-stars reportedly made $200,000.
Whedon, whose Avengers grossed more than $1.5 billion, signed an exclusive film and television deal with Marvel through June 2015 to write and direct The Avengers 2 and develop TV projects, including Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which is expected to be picked up for ABC’s fall season.