Blockbuster films boast very high profiles, meaning they have the possibility to do much more than merely entertain audiences. In recent years, it's become common for tentpoles to use their standing as a means to launch fundraisers for charity. For instance, a number of movies have partnered with Omaze for contests, including Blade Runner 2. It's nice to see the stars of these works get involved with making a difference in the community, coming to the aid of those most in need.
Few Hollywood franchises can rival the popularity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe right now, and they have certainly been at the forefront of charitable initiatives. Earlier this year when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was in production, the team started their own Omaze fundraiser, offering fans a chance to visit the set of the sequel. Now, Doctor Strange is getting in on the fun by teaming with Fotition to raise money for Save the Children through a new program called Hero Acts. You can watch a special video announcement featuring Benedict Cumberbatch above.
Getting involved is extremely easy. All one has to do is post a photo of themselves in their favorite Marvel superhero pose on the website MarvelStudiosHeroActs.com and other social media channels using the hashtags #marvelstudios and #heroacts. For each picture, Marvel Studios will donate $5 until the campaign reaches $1 million. The initiative will run from now until the end of the year. Fans interested in participating can choose from custom Marvel-themed overlays to give their photo an extra touch. To get things started, Cumberbatch shows off his own pose from the Doctor Strange film.
Kevin Feige explained the primary inspiration for Hero Acts in a press release, saying, “After the experience of filming portions of ‘Doctor Strange’ in Nepal, our team was inspired to give back to the kids there and wanted to establish a larger ongoing program in support of children facing extraordinary circumstances. For our first Marvel Studios: Hero Acts effort, we’re thrilled to team up with Save the Children, an organization with decades of experience improving the lives of children around the world.” In the video, Cumberbatch mentions that during production, he saw several children enduring "enormous challenges" and wanted to help them. It's expected that as many as 123,000 kids in Nepal, Haiti, and the U.S. will receive the learning materials they need to achieve a better future thanks to Hero Acts.
In all likelihood, Marvel will be very successful with Hero Acts and probably hit their goal in no time at all. As Cumberbatch jokes, the millions of fans around the world enjoy taking pictures as they act out moments from the movies. This marks the first time Marvel is launching this specific campaign, and one has to think it will become a new tradition moving forward. The MCU is set to grow exponentially with three new releases a year soon, so that's several opportunities to raise money for terrific causes.
Doctor Strange opens November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man: Homecoming – July 7, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; Avengers: Infinity – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel– March 8, 2019; Untitled Avengers – May 3, 2019; and as-yet-untitled Marvel movies on July 12, 2019, and on May 1, July 10, and November 6 in 2020.