May 7th 2012 By: Graeme McMillan
It's the biggest movie of the year -- with the most successful opening weekend of all time in the US
-- but The Avengers movie
end up being a missed opportunity for the US Department of Defense
. According to a DoD spokesman, the Pentagon withdrew support for the movie during production because it just wasn't realistic enough.Speaking to Wired's Spencer Ackerman
, US Defense Department Hollywood liaison -- because that is an actual position -- Phil Strub revealed that the Pentagon's involvement with the making of Marvel's uber-hit movie faltered because of the gap between fictional and real-world bureaucracy:
We couldn't reconcile the unreality of this international organization and our place in it. To whom did S.H.I.E.L.D. answer? Did we work for S.H.I.E.L.D.? We hit that roadblock and decided we couldn't do anything [with Avengers].
Yes, the question of whether the US Department of Defense worked for a fictional organization with admittedly amorphous affiliations and mission statements prevented the Pentagon from co-operating with the production of a movie that's made more than $200 million in three days of release in the US alone, setting a new box office record.
Apparently, Marvel tried to explain the special relationship S.H.I.E.L.D., which, in the movies, stands for Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division and should, therefore, fall under the jurisdiction of the US Department of Homeland Security not the Department of Defense -- has with the US government but, according to Strub, "It got to the point where it didn't make any sense." Because "sense" is the main thing people want from a movie that features alien Norse gods, irradiated scientists that turn into green monsters and a guy who flies around in a high-tech suit of armor, obviously.