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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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May 23rd, 2014
12:56 PM ET

Why Stan Lee doesn't have a cameo in latest 'X-Men' movie

For more of our interview with Stan Lee, watch CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper" at 4p.m. ET on CNN

(CNN) – To film fans, Stan Lee is just a random extra in a comic movie, an older guy playing a minor role in Marvel's universe.

But to die-hard fans, Lee is the godfather of comic books, the legendary creator of some of the world's most profitable characters.

Lee does not have a cameo in the upcoming "X-Men: Days of Future Past."

"I've never requested a cameo," Lee tells CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper." "I love doing them, I'm incredibly happy when someone asks me to do a cameo, but I don’t ask for them."

"In fact, there are times that I don’t get them. In the new X-Men movie, I don’t have a cameo because it was shot somewhere in Europe and I wasn't able to go there," says Lee.

But the 91-year-old legend says he has a "funny theory" about his absence in the new summer blockbuster.

"It could also be they didn't want me to do the cameo, because without my cameo the movie will make more money," said Lee.

Huh?

"Somebody watches the movie, and the movie ends, and the person says: 'Wow, I didn't see Stan’s cameo. I must have missed it.' So what do they do? Right back to the box office, buy another ticket, and watch the movie again," said Lee.

"I think it’s a big money making ploy on the part of the producers," he says.

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