Currently, when it comes to comic book films, Disney is in control of the playing field. Warner Bros. has Batman and Superman and is looking to expand their market by producing a Justice League film and Fox has the X-Men and Fantastic Four properties to play with, but neither of them has come close to achieving what Disney and Marvel Studios has. Between The Avengers, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America, it seems like Disney has got the market pretty much locked up.
But Fox is looking to change the game and get back into the running by expanding their selection of movies using what copyrights they currently have. They have The Wolverine coming out next year and the sequel to X-Men: First Class arriving in 2014, plus a Fantastic Four reboot in the making, but that won’t be enough to compete in the long run. So what do they plan to do? Well, according to Mark Millar, their resident creative consultant, Fox is looking to put out at least 10 movies in the near future.
What many people don’t realize is that both the Fantastic Four and X-Men copyrights carry with them a wide selection of characters, many of them fan favorites that have until now been completely ignored in the film world. Mark Millar wouldn’t mention specifics when asked about the upcoming projects, but he did say that he’d really like to see movies based around properties such as X-Force, Deadpool and Cable. All of these, if done properly, could be fairly popular among those who enjoy the X-Men films.
Millar appears to be styling himself in the manner of Joss Whedon when it comes to Fox’s properties, looking to expand the universe and create films that interact with each other within a broader picture. He has also mentioned that The Wolverine will in some way herald in this new era of Fox Marvel projects, leading on to other things, though he didn’t elaborate on exactly why that’s going to be the case. I guess we’ll have to wait until next summer to find out, unless someone drops some spoilers on us.
Personally, I think this is great. Those who have followed my X-Men Revisited series here know that I am a huge fan of the title, having basically grown up on the team and some of its spin-off titles. I wouldn’t mind seeing a New Mutants or X-Factor film myself, or anything that Fox could manage to cram Galactus into, for that matter. Big aliens that devour worlds equals instant win in my book.
We may have to wait several years to see how this pans out, and in the meanwhile Disney continues to gain more power as they enter their “Phase 2” of Marvel flicks. But between Disney, Fox and Warner Bros., the future is looking very bright for comic book heroes in general and fans will no doubt have three or four films to look forward to every year from here on out.