Marvel Studios' D23 banner includes Spider-Man despite reports Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige will no longer be involved in Sony Pictures' Spider-Man movies - leading many to believe Spidey will exit the Marvel Cinematic Universe due to Sony and Marvel's parent company Disney parting ways. Coming off a successful San Diego Comic-Con where Feige unveiled Phase 4 of the MCU, Marvel Studios will next appear at Disney's D23 Expo 2019 this weekend. Although Marvel Studios won't have its own panel like at SDCC, it's expected to have a presence at both the Disney+ and Walt Disney Studios panels.
Since Feige unveiled all the MCU Phase 4 release dates at SDCC - including both movies and Disney+ TV shows - and briefly teased Phase 5, it's unclear what exactly Marvel Studios will reveal at D23. However, in the week leading up to the expo, a major news story broke, that being the breakdown of negotiations between Disney/Marvel and Sony Pictures on the future of Spider-Man in the MCU. As of now, it looks like Sony will develop future Spider-Man movies without Marvel Studios, which seemingly means the MCU will have to move forward without the wall-crawler. However, there's still a possibility Sony and Marvel reach a new Spider-Man deal - and based on Marvel Studios' D23 banner, they fully expected Spidey to remain in the MCU.
Photos from the Anaheim Convention Center show that it's decked out for the start of D23 on Aug. 23. Banners decorating the convention center feature some of Disney's biggest properties: Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar. The banners include characters like Star Wars' R2D2, Toy Story characters, Frozen's Anna and Elsa, and some of the MCU's biggest heroes: Black Panther, Iron Man, Captain Marvel... and Spider-Man. Check out the Marvel Studios banner below.
It makes sense that Marvel Studios would include Spider-Man when promoting the biggest MCU heroes; the ones chosen for the banners are clearly the most recognizable characters, not necessarily those that have movies coming in Phase 4. After all, Iron Man is dead; Captain Marvel and Black Panther are both getting sequels, but they won't arrive until Phase 5. As for Spider-Man, there are two ways to read his inclusion on the banners: Disney was sure they'd strike a new deal with Sony in time for D23, or Disney didn't expect the negotiations to be made public before D23.
Either way, in light of recent reports, Spider-Man's inclusion alongside fellow MCU characters is awkward at best. At worst, it's a hurtful reminder to fans of just what they're losing if Disney and Sony can't reach an agreement. To make matters worse, it's unclear if the situation with Sony and Disney will have any impact on Marvel Studios' plans for D23. It seemed unlikely they would announce Spider-Man 3, since that will be a Sony movie, but now one of the most pressing questions for most Marvel fans is the future of Spider-Man and Disney/Marvel may choose not to address it at all. Whether Feige or anyone else at Disney and Marvel comment on the situation with Sony, Spider-Man will still loom large over this weekend's D23 - both literally on the convention center banners and figuratively with the character's MCU future in question.
Photo source: Mansoor Mithaiwala
- Black Widow (2020) release date: May 01, 2020
- Eternals (2020) release date: Nov 06, 2020
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) release date: Feb 12, 2021
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2021) release date: May 07, 2021
- Thor: Love and Thunder (2021) release date: Nov 05, 2021