LOS ANGELES (AP) — Among comics lovers, Stan Lee was as much a superhero as the characters he helped create.
Those fans, along with Lee’s friends and colleagues, will get to pay their final respects at a Los Angeles memorial Wednesday night for the Marvel Comics mastermind who helped bring the world Spider-Man, Black Panther and The Incredible Hulk.
A public remembrance and celebration of Lee will be held around Lee’s hand and footprints outside the TCL Chinese Theatre, followed by a private gathering inside the theatre, according to Lee’s company, POW! Entertainment, which organized the memorial.
PHOTO GALLERY: Remembering Stan Lee of Marvel Comics
Filmmaker and Lee super-fan Kevin Smith is among the hosts of the event whose title opens with Lee’s catchphrase: ”Excelsior! A Celebration of the Amazing, Fantastic, Incredible & Uncanny Life of Stan Lee .”
The evening will include speakers, musical performances, an art exhibit, and costumes and props from Lee’s creations and Marvel-movie cameos.
Smith will moderate a discussion of Lee’s life and work that’s set to include actors Mark Hamill and Vincent D’Onofrio and Wu Tang Clan member RZA.
Smith, in a statement, called Lee “the literary titan of comic books” and “our modern-day Mark Twain.”
Lee’s only child, daughter J.C. Lee, also plans to attend.
Lee died in November at age 95 at a Los Angeles hospital. He was laid to rest in a small private funeral the same week.
Lee’s wife and partner in nearly everything, Joan Lee, died in July of 2017, leaving a void that made her husband, by then in mental and physical decline, vulnerable to hangers-on.
Lawsuits, court fights and an elder abuse investigation emerged around Lee, but all appeared to be resolved in the months before his death.
He was the face of Marvel until the end of his life and was most widely recognized for his constant cameos in dozens of Marvel movies spanning his last decades.
His co-creations with comic artists also included The Fantastic Four, Thor, Iron Man and most of the other heroes in the Marvel comic and cinematic universes.
Follow AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton at twitter.com/andyjamesdalton.