Friday, May 24, 2013

And the Pissing Contest Begins...

MARVEL VS. 20TH CENTURY FOX: BATTLE FOR QUICKSILVER

I always hoped and dreamed that while the Marvel Cinematic Universe really began to mold together that it would not but heads with Sony and Fox. Sometimes I guess you are not so lucky.

Last year, when the trailer for "The Avengers" hit, I remember boatloads of people asking where certain superheroes were. "Where's Spiderman, Where's Wolverine, Where's Batman?" They would ask. I am going to try to explain this as clearly as possible. First of all, Batman can't be in a Marvel movie, because he is a DC character, completely different comic universe. Second of all, there are legal obligations that Marvel needs to keep intact, which is why Spiderman, Wolverine and other characters sat that film out. 

Way back in the late 90's, Marvel Studios was a very young movie company. And it didn't have millions of dollars thrown at it by the Marvel Comics company, but the studio had wanted to make film adaptations out of Marvel characters. They needed somebody with cash to back these projects, and that's where Sony and Fox came in. They brought lots of money to Marvel Studios and together these studios created what we know now, as the "X-Men" and "Spiderman" franchises. (X-Men began in 2000 and Spiderman began in 2002 respectively.)

I don't know how many of you remember when "X-Men" and "Spiderman" first came out, but it was like a bomb going off. Both films made gigantic amounts of currency, they put Marvel Studios on the map, and slowly but surely the young studio became something relevant. Fox got more rights to many other Marvel characters, including Daredevil and the Fantastic Four. Together, the studios made tons of cash and brought these characters to life. By 2008, Marvel Studios had lots of critical acclaim, and most importantly money to its name. So it wanted to do something big, something never done before in the history of cinema. They wanted to create a coherent and flowing universe with the characters they had left. They were flying solo for the most part for the first time ever. Sure, Paramount and Universal were major production players. But Marvel Studios was taking to the front-lines, creating what would become the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

"The Avengers" made over a billion dollars worldwide, a huge accomplishment. Of course Marvel wanted to make a sequel. I have been reporting on the rumors and all the fun stuff revolving around the sequel and the second phase of this cinematic universe in general. You may think that after the success of "The Avengers" that Fox and Sony would be knocking on Marvel's door, hoping to bring their studios and characters together for a mega movie. Imagine a movie with The Avengers and The X-Men, standing side-by-side, to face Thanos or Apocalypse. That would be awesome and most importantly, that would sell tickets. But sadly it looks like that won't be happening anytime soon.

If you have been keeping a close eye on my blog, you know I've been writing a lot about director Joss Whedon and his plans to include Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver in "The Avengers 2." You will also know that I wrote about the origins of these characters. These superheroes are brother and sister, they are mutants, they are the children of Magneto, and they became Avengers. Remember in the comics, all of these characters exist together. Even though Quicksilver is a mutant and Fox owns all of the characters under the X-Men umbrella, Whedon could still pull it off. Quicksilver is after all an Avenger. Just as long as Whedon doesn't mention the words "mutant" or "Magneto" in his movie, he's home free.

Now yesterday Bryan Singer, who is busy at work making "X-Men: Days of Future Past" tweeted that actor Evan Peters will be portraying Quicksilver in his upcoming movie. If you think that this is the first step in bringing these two universes together, it isn't. Apparently, Quicksilver will only be featured in one scene in "X-Men: Days of Future Past," but Singer will define the character first. (Days of Future Past comes out in 2014, while Avengers 2 comes out in 2015.) Whedon expressed already quite a bit about how he had big plans for the character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Fox is playing a very dangerous game right now with Marvel. A relationship which is sort of on the rocks to begin with. Fox has always been a greedy studio. And if you're wondering why Marvel just hasn't bought their characters back from the studios is quite simple: There is so much money to be made by the studios that everyone gets greedy.

If you want my opinion, I feel like Fox got jealous, ordered Singer to get Quicksilver in their movie (hence the one scene.) thereby forcing Whedon to do something different with his movie. No matter how you look at it, Fox could be burning a bridge right now and things could very well get ugly.

Would you rather see Quicksilver in an Avengers movie or an X-Men movie? Or are you wondering why the studios just can't get along? Can both studios just get away with using the same character? And most importantly, will that be worth it in the end? I think Fox took a cheap shot at Marvel. And with Disney now at Marvel's back, this could be a huge mistake.


More as this story develops.

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