HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Unlike one of his signature cameo appearances, Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee was the star of the show Tuesday when he sank his hands and feet into cement at the TCL Chinese Theatre.
Lee, 94, was just honored last week as a Disney Legend for his role in the creation of 90 percent of Marvel Comics’ iconic characters, including Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, X-Men, and Iron Man.
Filmmaker Kevin Smith and comic-book artist Todd McFarlane were among those on hand at the Chinese Theatre and sang the praises of Lee, who was characteristically humble.
“If I’d have known I was so good I would have asked for a raise,” Lee said, joking that he is apparently “far too good to be wasting time with ordinary people.”
“But I seem to be spending my life with ordinary people who are the best people in the world,” he said. “I’ve been the luckiest man in the world because I’ve had friends. And to have the right friends is everything. People
you can depend on. People who tell you the truth if you ask for something. I’ve been lucky in that area.”
Born Stanley Martin Lieber on Dec. 28, 1922, in New York City, Lee began his career in 1939 as an assistant at Timely Comics with such duties as getting lunch, filling inkwells and proofreading.
His first published work was as a text filler for Captain America No. 3, published in 1941. He wrote under the name Stan Lee, which would later become his legal name, writing in his autobiography that he intended to save his given name for more literary work.
Lee was named interim editor of Timely Comics in 1941, and later became the editor-in-chief for what would evolve into Marvel Comics in 1961 until 1972 when he became publisher.
More than 2 million of Lee’s comic books have been published in 75 nations and in 25 languages. His characters have been featured in 24 animated television series and several live-action blockbuster films.
Lee’s wife of nearly 70 years, Joan, died July 6 at age 93.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)