It looks as if fans shouldn’t expect to see the Fantastic Four show up in the MCU anytime soon. After the hokey first pair of films, fans were ready for Fox’s updated take on the Fantastic Four two years ago. And though fan reception was mixed, the film bombed at the box office amid behind-the-scenes controversy and near-universal derision from critics. The impact was so negative, even the film’s producer is unsure whether the characters will ever see the light of day again.
There was one piece of good news for fans, however, as rumors began swirling immediately that the rights for the characters would be sold back to Marvel. Since that time, Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige has shot-down the idea of working out a deal with Fox, even one akin to the one made with Sony for Spider-Man. Still, many have continued hoping Marvel will get the characters back, even the actor who played Doctor Doom in the failed film. While Feige hopes to one day get back the rights to all of Marvel’s characters, that won’t be happening anytime soon.
“[We have] no plans with the Fantastic Four right now. No discussions about it.”
Given Feige’s previous statements and Fox’s uncertainty on what they want to do with the property, the news isn’t too surprising. Even if Marvel were to work out a deal or get the rights back completely, their packed film slate also means we wouldn’t be seeing the characters anytime. There’s also the question of whether Marvel even want a Fantastic Four movie. After all, the characters have been somewhat sidelined in the comics for years, and their name carries a lot of negative weight at the box office for the average moviegoer.
That said, many within the Marvel world are eager to take a crack at the Fantastic Four and their pantheon. Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson has said he’d love for Marvel to regain the rights, while Guardians of the Galaxy writer/director James Gunn has long hoped to use one of the team’s central villains in a film.
For now, it looks as if the Fantastic Four will remain in cinematic limbo. It’s hard to be too upset, however, given how many Marvel projects are currently on their way. Between films and TV from both Marvel and Fox, the Fantastic Four are just about the only major Marvel characters who aren’t on their way to being adapted for live action.
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