James Gunn Says There Are Two ‘Fantastic Four’ Villains He’d Love To Use In The MCU

James Gunn

During a live Q&A on his official Facebook page last night, Guardians of the Galaxy writer/director James Gunn (currently hard at work shooting the sequel) commented on the possibility of the Fantastic Four’s inclusion in the MCU and cited two villains he’d love to “play around with” in the MCU – namely, Annihilus and the time-traveling Kang the Conqueror (pictured above to the right and left respectively of FF’s archnemesis Doctor Doom).

I probably wouldn’t add Ben Grimm to the Guardians team even if they were a part of the MCU. And of course I would love the FF to be a part of the MCU…Fox owns so many great villains and cosmic characters I would love to play around with including Annihilus — and I think they own Kang.

Gunn mentions Grimm because he becomes a member of the Guardians when the Four disband in the comics – temporarily of course.

Marvel’s First Family sits in a precarious position; last summer’s reboot was a failure of epic proportions and the sequel, dated for less than two years later in June 2017, was quietly nixed. When Fox also failed to get a Daredevil reboot off the ground (Joe Carnahan even came in with a Hail Mary presentation), the character’s rights reverted to Marvel Studios which had its TV division turn it into a successful Netflix series and the lynchpin of its Defenders-verse. And when Sony’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2 disappointment critically and commercially, Spider-Man actually got to join Marvel in an unprecedented sharing deal between the two rival companies.

Could something similar happen with the Fantastic Four? It’s hard to see another sequel or reboot being salvageable. Like Sony, Fox has severely damaged their superhero’s brand, although they’ve managed to creatively recover the X-Men universe into a burgeoning second-tier MCU. Their best bet seems to be folding the Four into that series, treating them how Marvel treats the Hulk or Hawkeye – a utility player best used in contrast with others. However, it also seemed impossible two years ago that Spider-Man would ever appear in the MCU and yet here we are, three weeks from his debut in Captain America: Civil War and just over a year away from his solo film, the aptly-titled Spider-Man: Homecoming. So let’s not count the Fantastic Four or their villains out of the MCU just yet.

SOURCE: James Gunn’s Facebook Q&A 4/17/16 (via CinemaBlend)

Sam Flynn

Sam Flynn

Sam is a writer and journalist whose passion for pop culture burns with the fire of a thousand suns and at least three LED lamps.

  • Jake Bucsko

    Obviously I have no inside information on the legality of any of this, but it seems to me that Kang should be owned, at least in the same gray area that the Maximoff twins are in, by Marvel Studios. It’s true that he was originally introduced in a Fantastic Four comic, but that was as an Egyptian pharoah. The first time he appeared as Kang was an Avengers comic.

    But besides that, Fox was able to use Kingpin in their Daredevil movie because even though Fisk was originally a Spider-Man villain, he was primarily known as DD’s archnemesis. Same thing goes for Kang, he’s obviously an Avengers villain first and foremost. Like I said, I don’t know anything about how these characters are owned by who, but it sure seems like the MCU should have access to Kang. The Kang War is my favorite Avengers story ever, I’d plotz if he were the next overarching villain to fight Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, a la Thanos.

    • Chris W

      The rights are public knowledge. Kingpin reverted back to Marvel with DD and all ancillary characters.

      Kang is with Fox. No grey area.

      • Jake Bucsko

        I know Kingpin reverted back, just wondering why Fox was allowed to use him for the Affleck film when he was introduced in Spider-Man comics, yet the same principle doesn’t apply for Kang. Complicated business.

        • Chris W

          Indeed. Likely a case by case basis with some of the more notables. Too bad Marvel didn’t have a crystal ball.

  • Scott Whalen

    Fox has the rights to Fantastic Four and has to produce a Fantastic Four movie every 7 years, or the rights revert back to Marvel. Certainly, a sequel to that disaster is out of the question. That leaves a reboot. Any reboot of Fantastic Four will bring risks and a high budget. Will Fox be willing to put up that money with no guarantee of success? Could they develop a connection to the X-Men Universe? In a sense, Fox has misused the Fantastic Four in every movie they developed. Last week, Simon Kinberg (writing and producer of X-Men and Deadpool movies) talked about incorporating Deadpool in an Avenger movie. While this is just talk, perhaps it’s a sign from Fox that they’d like to thaw the frosty relations between Marvel and Fox. Could a sharing relationship develop just like the Sony deal? Who knows? But, Sony and Marvel had a much more cordial relationship then Fox and Marvel do. We almost had the Oscorp Tower (from Amazing Spider-Man) included in The Avengers, but it wasn’t ready. Fox doesn’t have many choices, but the animosity between the two must be overcome before any sharing deal can be developed.

  • Worldmind

    Fantastic Four, Doom, Galactus, Silver Surfer, Skrulls and the rest in the MCU? It’s only a matter of time. Fox can’t sit on them forever, they might want to wait to see how Sony does out of the Spider-Man deal, but I can’t see them not making a similar deal with Marvel.

  • Disney/Marvel eyes those cosmic FF villains with great jealousy. The big one is Galactus. He’d almost certainly be the first villain picked from FF’s stable if Marvel got the movie rights back.

    I still think the best way for Fox to proceed is fold the Fantastic Four into their X-Men movies. Reboot the FF characters once again and have an X-Men Vs Fantastic Four movie.

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