Kevin Feige has made a career out of making Marvel movies and subsequently creating the most successful shared movie universe in history. But even with most of Marvel’s characters at his disposal, there’s one thing that Feige wants more than anything – a fully unified MCU, with the X-Men and Fantastic Four in tow.
In an interview with Perception (hat tip Screen Rant), Feige noted that he thought that Hugh Jackman’s final performance as Wolverine in Logan was brilliant. When asked if he would still want to use the X-Men characters in future films, Feige said the following:
“Yes, of course! My goal is to replicate the experience that comic book fans have reading the books up on the screen and we’ve been able to accomplish that beyond my wildest dreams over the last ten years. And certainly, including Spidey in Civil War, in the upcoming Infinity War, is yet another dream that I didn’t even dare to talk about publicly because I thought the odds of it were very slim. So, no plans beyond that for the few remaining characters that aren’t already in the MCU but never say never. Who knows what can happen in the future?”
The full interview can be seen below:
In general, the possibility that Marvel could use a franchise they don’t own (Spider-Man) was previously seen as unthinkable until Feige brokered a deal with Sony Pictures to share the character – in exchange for getting to keep the profits on the ensemble films that the webslinger appears in, Marvel gave Sony the ability to use MCU characters in their standalone Spider-Man films. The gamble is so far paying off, as Captain America: Civil War made $400M more than its predecessor Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Spider-Man: Homecoming is currently tracking at an opening of $135M higher, which is approximately $43M more than what the previous film (The Amazing Spider-Man 2) opened to.
Twentieth Century Fox are the last studio that have the license to use Marvel characters that Marvel Studios does not own, with the company owning both X-Men and Fantastic Four. So provided that Homecoming does incredibly well, that would give Feige more of a bargaining chip to try to convince Twentieth Century Fox that it would be in there best interests to work together on future Marvel movies. (And after Fant4stic turned out to be a massive flop for Fox, it’s incredibly unlikely that they’ll pursue yet another reboot of the franchise on their own.) In any case, it seems as though Feige is one who is good at playing the long game, so there’s a good chance that he could work something out years from now to fully expand the MCU into the setting that it was meant to become.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 is in theaters right now. Future MCU releases include Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7, 2017), Thor: Ragnarok (November 3, 2017), Black Panther (February 16, 2018), Avengers: Infinity War (May 4, 2018), Ant-Man & The Wasp (July 6, 2018), Captain Marvel (March 8, 2019), an untitled Avengers sequel (May 3, 2019), an untitled Spider-Man sequel (July 5, 2019), Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3 (TBD), Doctor Strange 2 (TBD), and 3 unrevealed movies scheduled for May 1, 2020, July 10, 2020, and November 6, 2020.