‘Howard The Duck’ Indirectly Led To ‘Toy Story’ And Other Facts About The Cult Favorite Flop

Features Writer

Part big budget science-fiction, part tongue-in-cheek satire, part comic book movie, Howard The Duck was released in theaters 30 years ago on August 1 with the expectation that it would be a blockbuster hit. After all, the movie had George Lucas as an executive producer, who had just wrapped up the Star Wars classic trilogy just a couple years earlier. Unfortunately, that proved not to be the case, with a main character that was deemed too cutesy for adults, but too adult-themed for kids, the film was a box-office bomb. Over the years, Howard The Duck has found a way to split the audience, standing as a joke to some and a cult favorite to others. To celebrate the latter status and the three decades that have passed since Marvel Comic’s anthropomorphic detective debuted on the silver screen, here are some fascinating facts about the film.

It’s (Technically) The First MCU Movie

Based on the Marvel comic book character created by Steve Gerber and artist Val Mayerik in 1973, the movie came out years before any of Marvel’s earliest cinematic efforts, including 1989’s The Punisher, 1990’s Captain America, and Roger Corman’s oft-forgotten interpretation of The Fantastic Four in 1994. None of those movies are canon within the MCU, of course, but since Howard The Duck was produced by Lucasfilm, (though released by Universal), and Lucasfilm (like Marvel Studios) was sold to Disney, it’s still technically in the family.

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