Stan Lee will be forever known as one of the greatest storytellers of the 20th century, and whilst many of us are still grieving his loss, super-fan Kevin Smith is honoring his legacy alongside Legion M, Agents of Mayhem and Stan Lee’s POW! Entertainment with a special event for fans and friends alike “Excelsior! A Celebration of the Amazing, Fantastic, Incredible & Uncanny Life of Stan Lee”.
The event will be held at the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood on the 30th January, where there will be a moment of remembrance at Stan Lee’s hand and foot imprint, along with a musical performance, select costumes and props from Lee’s creations and an art exhibit by artist Rob Prior celebrating Lee’s legacy. The evening will then move inside the theatre for a private tribute with super fan Kevin Smith moderating. Billed to attend alongside Smith so far are celebrity fans Mark Hamill (Star Wars), Rob Liefeld (Co-Creator of Deadpool), Michael Uslan (Executive Producer, The Dark Knight), Vincent D’Onofrio, RZA, and Tom DeSanto (Producer, X-Men, Transformers franchise) as well as others who are due to be announced. They’ll be sharing personal stories and favorite memories of Lee, and the evening will also include live performances of Lees’ favorite music and video tributes.
All net proceeds from the event will go to the non-profit organization The Hero Initiative, a charity supporting creators, artists and writers in need.
Jim McLauchlin, head of The Hero Initiative knew Lee for decades and said, “Stan believed in the ‘golden rule,’ and always went out of his way to make time for others and make their day just a little bit better. I think this tribute is absolutely in that spirit, and a great chance for fans to get together, share their love for Stan, and find strength in that.”
You can hear Stan himself talk about his passion for the organization in the video below, originally released in 2011.
Whilst Stan had 1000s of fans, Smith has always been very outspoken about his love for the creator. “Thank you, Stan, for making me not only the boy I was but also the man I am today. You had great power and you always used it responsibly, fostering billions of dreamers who all know your name – a name written in the stars for all time. You were not just the literary titan of comic books, you were our modern-day Mark Twain.”
His full emotional statement following Lee’s passing in November was posted on his Instagram page alongside an image of the two together with Smith’s longtime collaborator Jason Mewes.
View this post on Instagram
This is how I’ll always see you, @therealstanlee: as our benevolent leader and king, smiling down from your eternal throne on the generations of imaginations you fed and inspired. You were the first creator whose voice I knew before I’d ever actually heard it. You dreamed up some of my favorite modern myths and created characters that instilled in me a moral barometer, teaching me right from wrong and showing me it’s always better to be a hero instead of a villain. Your characters represented us: yes, they had extraordinary, unbelievable abilities, but they were also reflections of a world we knew, where a Spider-Man is really just a boy who wants to help. You showed me how to interact with the audience whenever you stepped onto Stan’s Soapbox to reach out to the readers. You showed me how to advocate for my field beyond the actual art itself whenever you tub thumped for comic books outside of the medium. It was never enough for you to simply make a comic because you were a true salesman at heart. So you not only sold comics, you sold me *on* comics – so much so that I built a life and career around your dreams and ideals. When you did Mallrats with us, you not only made a lifelong fan’s dream come true, you also lent me comic book credibility that I still get to spend today. And whether it was for @comicbookmenamc or @yogahosers, whenever I asked to borrow your heat again, you were always there for me with a smile. Your love story with Joanie and your long, happy marriage always shined as an example of what I wanted for my personal life. I long admired (and emulated) your kindness and patience and sense of humor when dealing with your public. Outside of my parents, you were the one adult who gave me the most useful life skills I still use today. Thank you, Stan, for making me not only the boy I was but also the man I am today. You had great power and you always used it responsibly, fostering billions of dreamers who all know your name – a name written in the stars for all time. You were not just the literary titan of comic books, you were our modern day Mark Twain. I will miss you all my days, my friend and hero. Excelsior forevermore. #KevinSmith #StanLee
There are a limited number of tickets available for “Excelsior! A Stan Lee Celebration” available from Wednesday, January 9, at 5 p.m. PST / 8 p.m. EST at legionm.com/stantribute. For further details on the event as they are announced, check back with us, or keep your eyes peeled on social media for Kevin Smith, Legion M, Agents of Mayhem, and Stan Lee’s POW! Entertainment. (@TheRealStanLee, @ThatKevinSmith, @LegionMofficial, @AgentsofMayhem).