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Legendary comic books writer Stan Lee dies aged 95

Lee had cameos in all of the Marvel movies.

Updated Nov 12th 2018, 7:22 PM

Avengers: Infinity War Premiere - Los Angeles Source: Hahn Lionel/ABACA/PA Images

THE FORMER COMIC book writer and editor who helped to create superheroes such as Spider-Man, the Hulk, the X-Men and Iron Man has died.

Stan Lee was 95.

The American was formerly the publisher and chairman of Marvel Comics.

He made cameo appearances in numerous films based on Marvel characters through the years. 

Lee had suffered a number of illnesses in recent years.

He was declared dead at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, according to Kirk Schenck, an attorney for Lee’s daughter, JC Lee.

As the top writer at Marvel Comics and later as its publisher, Lee was widely considered the architect of the contemporary comic book.

He revived the industry in the 1960s by offering the costumes and action craved by younger readers while insisting on sophisticated plots, college-level dialogue, satire, science fiction, even philosophy.

Millions responded to the unlikely mix of realistic fantasy, and many of his characters went on to become stars of blockbuster films.

Recent projects he helped make possible range from the films Black Panther and Doctor Strange to such TV series as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and Guardians of the Galaxy.

“I think everybody loves things that are bigger than life. … I think of them as fairy tales for grown-ups,” he told The Associated Press in a 2006 interview.

We all grew up with giants and ogres and witches. Well, you get a little bit older and you’re too old to read fairy tales. But I don’t think you ever outgrow your love for those kind of things, things that are bigger than life and magical and very imaginative.

His heroes, meanwhile, were a far cry from virtuous do-gooders such as rival DC Comics’ Superman.

The Fantastic Four fought with each other. Spider-Man was goaded into superhero work by his alter ego, Peter Parker, who suffered from unrequited crushes, money problems and dandruff. The Silver Surfer, an alien doomed to wander Earth’s atmosphere, waxed about the woeful nature of man. The Hulk was marked by self-loathing. Daredevil was blind and Iron Man had a weak heart.

Lee scripted most of Marvel’s superhero comics himself during the ’60s, including the Avengers and the X-Men, two of the most enduring. In 1972, he became Marvel’s publisher and editorial director; four years later, 72 million copies of Spider-Man were sold.

“He’s become our Mickey Mouse,” he once said of the masked, web-crawling crusader.

With reporting from the Associated Press

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Sean Murray

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