The Marvel Director That Promised Never To Direct The MCU Again

By TeeJay Small | Published

Jon Favreau has become something of a flagship filmmaker with Disney, helming such big-budget classics as 2019’s Lion King, 2016’s The Jungle Book, and producing just about every new Disney+ series in the Star Wars universe. Favreau was also instrumental in constructing the building blocks of the MCU as we currently know it, by directing the first two installments of the Iron Man trilogy.

According to a recent write-up in Slashfilm, Jon Favreau was forced to get off the Marvel train early, citing exhausting schedules and the multi-character juggling act of the MCU as being simply too much work.

MCU Burnout

Jon Favreau is no stranger to juggling projects. After all, a cursory look at the acclaimed filmmaker’s IMDb page will show a host of concurrent projects across a broad spectrum of tones, genres, and franchises. However, Jon Favreau’s penchant for comic books could only take him so far within the Marvel franchise, as the filmmaker didn’t grow up completely engrossed in comics in the same way as someone like Kevin Feige, James Gunn, or even Joss Whedon did.

Jon Favreau Hands The Reins Over For Iron Man’s Third Outing

When handling the first Iron Man movie in 2008, a film largely responsible for kickstarting superhero cinematic universes in general, as well as Robert Downey Jr.’s big return to Hollywood, the Chef filmmaker excelled.

However, when Jon Favreau was tasked with continuing the Marvel Cinematic Universe into a bold new chapter, complete with a full roster of Avengers heroes and multi-movie arcs, he recognized that it was just too far out of his depth, opting to leave the directing chair to Shane Black for 2013’s Iron Man 3. Favreua details his exhaustion with the IP in the recently released book MCU: The Reign of Marvel Studios, written by Dave Gonzales, Joanna Robinson, and Gavin Edwards.

He Felt Rushed To Finish MCU Films

Robert Downey Jr

In the book, Jon Favreau explains that most of his frustration with Marvel was due to the rapid pace at which MCU movies are forced to turn around. With Iron Man, Favreau was given the creative freedom to take his time, hire his actors, write his script, and leisurely film with a budget of roughly $140 million. Favreau claims to have spent two years from the early stages of production until the final cut, with a wide range of freedom and creative control over the finished product.

A Terrible Time Making Iron Man 2

robert downey jr marvel

This is a far cry from Favreau’s experience helming Iron Man 2 just a few short years later. Jon Favreau reportedly didn’t enjoy the increased stress that came from shouldering a burgeoning media empire, with Marvel executives making scripting and casting demands, and especially tightening the leash in regard to production time.

He referred to the studio’s demands to turn over Iron Man 2 expeditiously as forcing himself and the hundreds of other cast and crew members to go into overdrive, preventing many of them from getting a good night’s sleep during the production.

Will Jon Favreau Ever Direct Another Marvel Movie?

marvel morbius

So, while Jon Favreau enjoys many directing and producing credits in partnership with Disney, fans shouldn’t hold their breath to see him helming another Marvel film any time soon. As the Iron Man franchise continued to serve as a springboard for other Avengers alumni, Favreau determined that it was time to depart from the franchise with his sanity still intact in what is likely one of the earliest possible cases of superhero fatigue ever recorded.