8. Putting Jon Favreau in the 'Iron Man' Director’s Chair
Favreau had just three features under his belt as a director when he got the Iron Man assignment, and none of them were a big-budget superhero action movie. But he brought a sly sense of humor and fun to the story of Tony Stark, the billionaire with the bad heart and the weapons-grade supersuit — both of which set the tone for the rest of the Marvelverse moives (as the films from Marvel Studios proper are known) while providing a lighter counterpart to the summer of '08's other big superhero film, the grim The Dark Knight. Favreau didn't stick around after the troubled Iron Man 2, but he created a successful template that all of the in-house films have followed since.