Marvel Entertainment has long shaped the cinematic universe that’s known for dominating superhero movies. Since unleashing Iron Man in 2008, the company has released an additional 22 films by 20 directors highlighting characters from Okoye and Jane Foster to Bruce Banner and Ghost. In 2019, Avengers: Endgame pulled in $2.797 billion at the box office just 89 days after its release, and set a new record for the highest-grossing superhero film of all time. Even more staggering is the value of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) overall, which stands at over $23.6 billion.
In addition to all of its entertainment industry success, Marvel’s most critical achievements are how attentive it is to its audience’s expectations and its fidelity to the source material. The Marvel Comics era began in 1961 when American publisher Martin Goodman responded to the growing interest in superhero books by commissioning writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby to create The Fantastic Four. These characters were created in such a way as to avoid the title of “superheroes." Instead, they act as a family of explorers and astronauts who annoy each other as much as they love each other. This realistic approach to creating and developing its characters built up Marvel’s reputation, and began to attract readers of all ages.
Half-a-century later, the star-power of Marvel Comics’ legendary superheroes continues to grow larger and more popular than ever. Operating under Marvel Studios, the MCU franchise also encompasses short films and television and digital series. Some of its best-known characters include Spider-Man, Captain America, Daredevil, Thor, Doctor Strange, Ant-Man, and the X-Men.
If you have an undeniable love for all things Marvel, you may have wondered how to forge a career with the corporate machine that shares its name. Will you need a secret identity and superpowers and to do so? Not exactly. But, then again, getting noticed by Marvel hiring managers will take more than an infinity gauntlet or a map of Warrior Falls. Keep reading to learn more about the company with the degrees that—figuratively speaking—can help you Hulk smash your way into a new role.
Marvel Studios (originally known as Marvel Films from 1993 to 1996) is a subsidiary of Marvel Entertainment and serves as its movie production arm. In 1996, Stan Lee was appointed as chairman of Marvel Studios as the production company formulated long-term plans to release movies over the next decade, including The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Black Panther.
In 2007, the company promoted junior executive Kevin Feige to the role of President of Marvel Studios. The move was a pivotal decision that paved Marvel’s path toward success, starting with Iron Man in 2008. In June of 2009, The Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion.
Marvel Entertainment has roughly 1,440 employees, most of whom are split between its New York City headquarters and Marvel Studios’ offices in Burbank, California. According to PayScale, full-time Marvel Entertainment employees make an average annual salary of $73,000.
Here are some of the highest-paid roles at the company, listed by average base salary:
Base salaries for software engineers range from $174,000 to $187,000.
Lead solution architects list a salary range of $158,000 to $171,000.
Base salaries for software architects range from $156,000 to $167,000.
Annual salaries for business intelligence developers range from $141,000 to $153,000.
A director of business development salary range is between $135,000 and $145,000.
Product managers have a salary range of anywhere from $69,000 to $141,000.
A vice president of operations can expect a salary range of $121,000 to $131,000.
Annual base salary for senior applications developers range from $111,000 to $120,000.
Salaries for software engineers range from $107,000 to $116,000.
Annual salaries for senior QA engineers range from $101,000 to $112,000.
Exploring Marvel Entertainment’s careers site reveals a host of opportunities in tech-related areas, as well as job openings for candidates with expertise in creative content and business.
As a leader in the fantasy/science fiction genre, it’s only fitting that tech pros represent not only the industry at large, but where technology is headed. Marvel Entertainment is currently hiring positions like senior workflow developer, and senior core developer to function within the Marvel Studios team. The company’s New York headquarters includes listings for a director of data science and engineering, a senior android developer, an IOS engineer, as well as a senior and associate DevOps engineer, with job postings updated continuously.
In this area, Marvel is looking for positions like video editor, senior editor, and producer to join an expert team that’s bringing the might of legendary Marvel characters to original series, daily shows, events, and games. At a deeper level, these roles encompass tasks that run the gambit of assembling footage into rough, fine and final cuts, developing highly realistic character designs, and ensuring that content stays authentically on brand.
All listings require candidates to hold a bachelor’s degree or higher in their field with at least three to five years of related work experience. More specifically, Marvel’s video editor position notes a bachelor's degree in television, film, journalism, or a similar field.
In this field, the industry behemoth is looking for candidates who are as well-versed in licensing, publishing, online media, and analytics as they are comic books. Openings within the business-side of Marvel’s dealings include positions like a director of sales, an assistant merchant, a coordinator of market sales, a consumer products compliance coordinator, and an assistant manager of talent payments.
The majority of opportunities within this department require at least a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree, with some listing more specific degree requirements, like a BA in marketing or merchandising. Candidates seeking senior-level openings in this area may benefit from a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or a master’s degree in marketing, marketing analytics, or a related field.
The company offers internship opportunities to students who are currently enrolled in an undergraduate college or university program, and are at least 18 years old. Marvel internships provide students the chance to work alongside veteran Marvel employees in editorial operations, special projects, film development, marketing, legal, and animation, among other departments. Internship opportunities are available year-round during the fall, spring, and summer semesters, and operate at Marvel’s offices in New York City and Burbank, California.
You might not have experience running a comic book-backed movie-making empire, but that doesn't mean you can't present yourself as an industry expert in the event you land an interview with Marvel. According to Glassdoor, you should be ready to discuss your favorite comic books, writers, or artists, as well as any previous work experience and how it applies to the role at hand. What matters most is that you present yourself with an upbeat attitude and a willingness to learn. It also doesn’t hurt to prepare for the question, “If you could have any superpower, what would it be?"
(This article was updated on 11/22/2021.)
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