Rumors have been circulating for months, but now it's finally official. Disney has acquired 20th Century Fox, which means the Marvel has access to all of the major characters they've been missing. The X-Men, Deadpool, the Fantastic Four, and all of the main villains associated with these groups are now under the umbrella of Marvel Studios.
This news is exciting and opens up almost limitless possibilities for the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The X-Men and Fantastic Four are almost certainly going to appear in future Marvel phases, and we can't wait to see how they're included.
Right now, we can only speculate as to how Marvel will include their new list of heroes and villains. As of now, the MCU has been sculpted without integral characters from the X-Men and Fantastic Four. Fox already has a slate of X-Men movies planned, and we've heard a little bit about how the MCU plans to move ahead after their upcoming 2018 movies.
Still, the inclusion of these important characters is almost certain to happen. It might not take place for over a year, but it will come. Ahead, we'll take a look at 15 things that will probably happen sooner or later, now that the X-Men, and Fantastic Four join the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
15 A Good Fantastic Four Movie
The Fantastic Four is the franchise that's probably been affected the most by the Disney-Fox merger. Over the years, the Fantastic Four movies have been the black sheep of the Marvel family. Nobody seems to be able to get the group right.
The most recent incarnation of the group garnered a whopping 9% on Rotten Tomatoes, and the older version didn't do much better. The Fantastic Four is an integral part of the Marvel Universe, so it's been disappointing to see them adapted so poorly.
Now that the Fox assets are set to join the MCU, it looks like the Fantastic Four will get the Spider-Man treatment. Finally getting a good Fantastic Four adaptation is one of the most exciting elements of Fox joining the MCU.
14 Deadpool/Spider-Man Team-Up
One of the most interesting dynamics in Marvel comics is between the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man and the anti-hero Deadpool. The two had butted-heads and teamed up several times in Marvel comics, and the prospect of seeing this relationship translate to the big screen is extremely promising.
Many fans expect Spider-Man to usher in the next phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe after the events Infinity War, and introducing one of the newest fan-favorites in Deadpool would be a great way to kick things off.
Based on their characters, it's unlikely that the duo will get along in the beginning. They may be positioned as adversaries, but eventually work together to face a more substantial threat. It would be a more comical version of what we see when The Punisher and Daredevil meet in the Netflix series.
13 Illuminati Confirmed
The prospect of the Illuminati in the MCU is not only exciting, it makes a lot of sense. Many of the characters included in the group are already well-known to audiences and would be a logical way to introduce the Fantastic Four and X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Tony Stark, Reed Richards, Doctor Strange, and Professor Charles Xavier need no introduction. Infinity War will allow all of these groups to realize that there are greater threats in the universe, and they need to come together to share all the information they have. This creation of the group could be similar to how the Illuminati is created in the comics, albeit under different circumstances.
The Illuminati opens a ton of opportunities to our favorite superheroes. No matter what direction they take, hopefully we'll see the Illuminati in future Marvel films.
12 MCU Can Say "Mutants" Now
Because of the previous issues in licensing, mutants didn't technically exist in the MCU. Sure, we've seen characters like Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, but in the MCU they weren't supposed to be "mutants."
Any fan of Marvel Comics cringed every time they heard one of the MCU characters say "enhanced individuals" or "miracles." Now, MCU characters can finally vocalize what fans already know: Scarlet Witch is a mutant, and there are more like her.
We can only speculate as to how the MCU will handle mutants in their world - and speculate we will - but it'll probably be easier than we think. After all, they're already there. All that's left is to change the way characters talk about them.
11 X-Men Phase One
If the MCU is technically a universe without mutants, then how will the MCU handle their inclusion? Have they been there all along?
There's an interesting fan theory that would begin the X-Men's first phase with an origin story for Professor X. At the end of this story, Xavier creates the X-Men but is concerned that the outside world would perceive a collection of mutants as a threat. He then uses his powers to wipe all knowledge of mutants from the minds of humanity.
Eventually, when Vision gets the Mind Stone, he is able to push past Xavier's block and finds out about Mutants. He goes to visit Xavier, who tells Vision what he did and why. Vision will keep the secret, but this interaction establishes a connection to the MCU and a reason why we've never seen or heard about the X-Men before.
10 Fantastic Four in Space
The introduction to the X-Men will be a bit more complicated for the MCU to explain than the Fantastic Four, especially since a lot of their adventures take place on this planet. The Fantastic Four, though, could bring the MCU's focus to a universal level.
The next phase of the MCU is expected to largely take place in space. It makes sense, as Thor and Guardians of the Galaxy are already expanding the current Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If this is the case, then the Fantastic Four will be a perfect fit. Of course, a journey into space is what triggers the creation of the Fantastic Four in the first place, so taking the MCU to the galaxy is a great time for the Fantastic Four to enter. In fact, this is one of the best ways to bring a Fantastic Four movie into the universe moviegoers already know.
9 The Universe Was Always Shared
One possibility we may see now that Fox has joined the MCU is that the two universes have been one and the same all along. If the previous speculation comes to pass, and the existence of mutants is completely wiped from the minds of humans, then it stands to reason that the X-Men's adventures took place before the first Iron Man movie.
So far, all X-Men movies have taken place before 2008 - the year the first Iron Man came out. It may be a bit of a stretch, but it's possible that the X-Men have been flying under the radar, honing their skills while the Avengers handle all the threats to the planet.
Following this logic, we may even see characters like Hugh Jackman's Wolverine join the MCU straight from the Fox movies. It's not the most likely situation on this list, but it could still make sense.
8 X-Men Vs. The Avengers
The possibility of the X-Men Vs. The Avengers is one of the logical paths writers in the MCU could choose as a way to introduce the X-Men into the MCU. Sure, they'll be on the same side one day, but setting the two groups as adversaries is an interesting way to start.
We may need a bit of exposition to start. This could come in the form of a few standalone origin stories for important X-Men characters, but after that, we can have them go at it. They could adapt the popular comic of the same name, but there are several other logical ways mutants and the Avengers could come to blows.
If the Avengers were unaware of mutant existence, it's reasonable for them to think that mutants are raising an army. Objectively, the X-Men would look pretty formidable if the Avengers found out about them out of the blue.
7 The Marvel Multiverse
The concept of the Marvel Multiverse might be a bit confusing to some moviegoers. Still, the Disney-Fox merger makes its inclusion more possible than ever.
The multiverse is the description for all the different timelines in Marvel. There's an infinite amount of universes, and each one is different than the next. If the MCU decides to take this route, it will be able to explain the introduction of the X-Men, as well as explore alternate storylines and timelines from the comics that would have otherwise been ignored.
Adding the multiverse to the MCU might be a bit much for casual audiences, but the same line of thinking existed when the MCU was first created. The MCU has been able to keep audiences hooked through a decade of interlocked movies, so if anyone can do it, it's Marvel Studios.
6 "Kills the Marvel Universe"
This one's something of a long shot, but if the MCU decides to bring the multiverse to the big screen, there's almost unlimited amount of options. Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans can't play their characters forever, and introducing multiple universes will help with this transition.
Another opportunity the multiverse opens is one-off, "Kills the Marvel Universe" movies. Characters like The Punisher and Deadpool have killed the Marvel Universe in alternate universes in the comics, so it's not too much of a stretch to think this could translate to the big screen. Of course, a movie like this would require a large budget, but it might be possible if Marvel decides to reboot the franchise.
The story of The Punisher killing the Marvel Universe is particularly interesting. If audiences can wrap their heads around the multiverse and Disney would allow such violence, it could be a cinematic success.
5 The Real Galactus
After the current cast of the MCU deals with the Thanos threat, the MCU needs another villain to provide a threat to our heroes. There will undoubtedly be a few one-off villains for standalone films, but who will be the next Thanos-level threat the Avengers face in upcoming phases?
Now that Fox characters have joined the MCU, Marvel has access to one of the most powerful villains in the Marvel Universe: Galactus. Galactus has played an important role throughout the life of Marvel Comics. On the big screen, he's been limited to a standalone, borderline unrecognizable villain in Fantastic Four movies.
Now that the future of the MCU heads towards a galactic storyline, it's the perfect time to introduce Galactus. Since he's often faced-off against the Fantastic Four, this would be an ideal time to bring all of these characters into the MCU without missing a beat.
4 Silver Surfer Ushers-in the Next Marvel Phase
The Silver Surfer is a fan favorite for many Marvel Comics fans, and they were largely disappointed when they saw him depicted for the first time onscreen. Like Galactus, he plays an important role in many of the galactic events in Marvel Comics and could help bring the MCU to space.
Even more importantly, the Silver Surfer is heavily involved with fighting Thanos during the events of Infinity War. He teams up with Adam Warlock during these events, who we know he is going to make an appearance in upcoming films.
Galactus and the Silver Surfer could help Marvel bridge the gap between the current MCU and the list of Fox characters. He could even be one of the driving forces here.
3 House of M
House of M is one of the most popular cross-over series in Marvel Comics, and the result of the story could help explain why mutants haven't been featured in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Audiences would need some exposition, but with a few years of development, it's possible to bring the House of M story to the MCU.
Eventually, Marvel Studios is going to have to rework their entire catalog. The blueprint for how to do this is in Avengers Disassembled and House of M. Marvel Comics went through a reworking stage when these comics came out, and they laid the groundwork for everything that came after.
When the MCU finally decides to incorporate the X-Men and Fantastic Four, they may decide to do the same thing. For that reason, House of M makes a lot of sense here.
2 All-New, All-Different X-Men
As much as we'd love to see Hugh Jackman and the current X-Men team enter the Marvel Cinematic Universe as they are, this probably won't happen. There's a chance the younger versions of these characters might make an appearance, but the most likely scenario is that Marvel Studios casts an entirely new X-Men team.
Since Fox is already planning future X-Men movies, it's possible that the X-Men join the MCU in an alternate storyline. While the standalone X-Men movies continue, we might start seeing mutant characters popping-up in Avengers movies played by different people.
We've already seen this happen to Quicksilver, so it's not too much of a stretch to say it will happen to everyone. After all, Quicksilver's depiction in the MCU is much closer to how his abilities are portrayed in the comics.
1 Starting Over
Infinity War presents a unique opportunity for the MCU. They can wipe the slate clean and almost completely start over. Thanos is a force, and comic readers are already speculating that he's going to win when he faces the Avengers.
When Thanos eventually beats the team, it's entirely possible that he wipes out half the life in the universe with a snap of his fingers - just as he does in the comics. Tony Stark is already obsessed with the vision Scarlet Witch put in his brain. With this in mind, it's within the realm of possibilities that almost the entire cast of the Avengers is killed during this fight.
In the wake of the destruction, a new cast will be created. This cast will include characters from the Fantastic Four and X-Men, and they'll be able to start without much explanation as to where they've been this whole time.
What are your hopes for the Fox's absorption in the MCU? Let us know in the comments!