Logan writer-director James Mangold really hates post-credits scenes. Mangold, who was recently nominated for an Oscar® for Best Adapted Screenplay for Logan, didn’t pull any punches when the subject came up at Audi’s 2018 Writers Guild Association Beyond Words Panel last night.
Despite having such a scene in one of his own films, 2013’s The Wolverine, Mangold is not a fan of the practice that Marvel Studios has turned into a modern blockbuster trend.
“The idea of making a movie that would fucking embarrass me, that’s part of the anesthetizing of this country or the world. That’s further confirming what they already know and tying in with other fucking products and selling them the next movie while you’re making this movie, and kind of all that shit that I find really fucking embarrassing. Like, that audiences are actually asking for scenes in end credits when those scenes were first developed for movies that suck, so they put something extra at the end to pick up the scores when the movie couldn’t end right on its own fucking feet.
“Now we’ve actually gotten audiences addicted to a fucking bonus in the credits. It’s fucking embarrassing. It means you couldn’t land your fucking movie is what it means. Even if you got 100,000 Twitter addicts who are gambling on what fucking scene is going to happen after the fucking credits it’s still cheating. It’s just cheating, but there’s all sorts of bad habits like that that fucking horrify me, man, that have become de rigueur in the way we make movies and I think the fear of being one of them that did that end then everyone’s patting me on the back and I feel like shit inside because I know I cheated, is probably the greatest thing that scares the shit out of me.”
This is sure to come as a shock with me being the owner of a site called Marvel Studios News, but I have no problem with and rather enjoy tags in the middle or and/or after the credits. Any film should still tell a complete story before the credits start rolling, but once that task has been accomplished, it is not “cheating” to add a little something extra to the story that was just told, or build excitement about what’s coming next.
Obviously, it would not have made sense for Logan to have anything during or after the credits since it was constructed as the finale for its title character. There wasn’t supposed to be anything to look forward afterward and any supplemental material would have taken away from the finality of the film’s final scene.
Scenes during and after the credits are a device. They can be used well, used poorly, or not used at all. To each their own.