OSCAR-winning filmmaker Martin Scorsese has sparked a debate over whether or not the hit Marvel movies are real cinema, comparing them to “theme park” rides. Now Marvel – and Scots actress Karen Gillan – are hitting back.

What did Scorsese say?

Now 76, the Goodfellas and Raging Bull director decried superhero films, telling Empire magazine that he had tried to enjoy them. He said: “I tried, you know? But that’s not cinema. Honestly, the closest I can think of them, as well-made as they are, with actors doing the best they can under the circumstances, is theme parks. It isn’t the cinema of human beings trying to convey emotional, psychological experiences to another human being.”

Blockbuster directors weren’t so pleased?

James Gunn, who helmed Guardians of the Galaxy, tweeted: “Martin Scorsese is one of my 5 favourite living film-makers. I was outraged when people picketed The Last Temptation of Christ [Scorsese’s 1988 movie) without having seen the film. I’m saddened that he’s now judging my films in the same way.”

But Scorsese got backing from big names?

Frances Ford Coppola, 80, who helmed The Godfather and Apocalypse Now, said he was right, adding: “Martin was kind when he said it’s not cinema. He didn’t say it’s despicable, which I just say it is.”

Meanwhile, Iron Man director, Jon Favreau, said Scorsese and Coppola have “earned the right” to criticise.

That’s a fair point?

With eight Oscar nominations for best director – and a win in 2006 for The Departed– Scorsese is the most nominated living director, while Coppola won best director in 1974 for The Godfather Part II, and The Godfather and The Godfather Part II both won best picture Oscars.

Marvel was not amused?

Superhero movies are box office gold at the moment. Avengers: Endgame was the highest grossing film in history after topping $2.8 billion globally earlier this year. And the studio’s chief creative officer – and architect of the Marvel universe – has just spoken for the first time about Scorsese’s October comments. Kevin Feige told The Hollywood Reporter: “I think that's not true. I think it's unfortunate. I think myself and everyone who works on these movies loves cinema, loves movies, loves going to the movies, loves to watch a communal experience in a movie theatre full of people."

KarenGillan agrees?

The Inverness-born star of Guardians of the Galaxy said this week that Marvel movies are “art made by real artists” and the fact they are popular should not detract from this.

Scorsese clarified his comments?

While promoting his upcoming Netflix movie, The Irishman – an epic crime saga starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, featuring “de-aging” technology – he said there is room for ”so many other ways”, adding that there is “value” in a film that's like a theme park. He said: “For example, the Marvel-type pictures, where the theatres become amusement parks, that's a different experience. I was saying earlier, it's not cinema, it's something else. Whether you go for that or not."