In an extensive interview with "Angry Birds" producer David Maisel, the exec discussed his time has a leading force at Marvel Studios from 2003-2009 -- where he eventually served as president and COO of the company -- revealing the early deals he made to get the Marvel properties on film. In his reflection, Maisel interestingly noted that Marvel was pretty close to selling "Captain America" to Warner Bros. and "Thor" to Sony.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Maisel said, "If I had gotten there three months, six months later, [the Warner Bros. and Sony] deals would have been done. And there would be no chance to bring all these characters together."
Maisel reportedly blocked the "Captain America" and "Thor" deals, and went on to secure a loan from Merrill Lynch for the company to own its live-action movies -- for $525 million, with the opportunity for Marvel to greenlight any movie under $165 million that was rated PG-13 -- with ten characters' movie rights up for collateral: "Captain America and something vaguely called the Avengers at the high end, dwindling to Shang-Chi and Power Pack. "
Of course, Marvel was successful in their self-financed film endeavors, and securing distributors for each film -- through Universal and Paramount at the time -- before the company was bought up by Disney.
The next Marvel Studios film, "Captain America: Civil War," hits theaters on May 6.