For many, the premiere of Spider-Man: No Way Home in 2021 was just one more Marvel Studios mega production destined to break box office records. However, for Victoria Alonso — winner of the Hispanic Heritage Foundation’s 2022 Vision Award, sponsored by AARP — it was a mark of how far she has come professionally.
Born in La Plata, Argentina, Alonso moved to the United States to become an actress. But after relocating from New York to Los Angeles, she shifted her professional focus to working behind the camera. As a producer whose credits include working alongside directors Ridley Scott (on Kingdom of Heaven) and Tim Burton (on Big Fish), Alonso has carved out an undisputed place in the Avengers universe at Marvel Studios, which she joined in 2005 and where she continues to climb the ranks. In 2021, she was named president of physical, postproduction, VFX and animation at Marvel. She’s worked on all the company’s productions since the premiere of Iron Man in 2008 and has served as executive producer on every Marvel movie since The Avengers in 2012.
Alonso spoke to AARP about the ups and downs of her profession and why it’s never too late to reinvent yourself, both professionally and personally.
Despite a market that’s almost saturated by the number of superhero movies premiering in a year, the public has connected with all the incarnations of Spider-Man that have appeared on the big screen. What is it about this character that has made that possible?
I think that what our little Spider-Man has — little as a term of endearment, not based on his importance — is that he represents a stage in our lives: high school. We can all relate to that time when we felt that we didn’t fit in. There’s that pressure of having to belong to a group and deal with who is going to accept us and how we can achieve that, and we realize we’re not the only ones who feel that way.