My pal Kris Tapley hosts a really great podcast for Variety called Playback, where he sits down with a ton of incredible filmmakers and actors just as their latest projects see release. As a part of that, he’s chatted with a number of comic book movie luminaries like Patty Jenkins, Ryan Coogler, Taika Waititi, and Rob Liefeld.
They’re all worth jumping onto iTunes or Spotify or whatever your podcast listening method of choice might be; but with his 100th episode, he interviewed Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige. It’s an illuminating discussion in celebration of the 10 year anniversary of what is probably the biggest blockbuster machine on the planet right now. But what’s really grabbing headlines today is his mention of the Disney purchase of 20th Century Fox including the film rights to X-Men and the Fantastic Four.
Up to this point, Feige’s been pretty coy about the subject, with a clear head of steam towards what’s already in development and the final chapter of Marvel’s Phase 3 in Avengers: Endgame. But in speaking with Tapley, he gave his biggest update yet in that he hasn’t been given the official green light quite yet, but it’s as close as it’s ever been:
“We’ve been told it’s looking very, very good and could happen in the first six months of next year…the notion of the characters coming back is great. But in terms of actually thinking about it and actually planning things, we haven’t started that yet.”
So there you go. No plans that he’s willing to cop to just yet, but if they get the all-clear within six months…there’s a real chance you’ll see a Marvel Studios branded X-Men or Fantastic Four film by 2022? Marvel moves fast, but these things still take time after all.
There are about 8 untitled Marvel films on the release schedule following Spider-Man: Far From Home next July. The Eternals is likely to be in there, Black Widow as well, Doctor Strange and Black Panther sequels also seem likely, and there’s always the postponed Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (if it happens). But beyond that, the timing seems very right for something else very new, and there’s a few 2022 slots they’ve got reserved that could finally make fans dreams come true.
More to come…in the new year! Happy New Year, gang!