Monday, November 20, 2017

What Happens If Disney Buys 21st Century Fox

Hi Everybody!

As you may have heard, there are rumors that Disney is trying to buy 21st Century Fox (the entertainment portion anyway, not the news part). This is a big deal with the Marvel community because of the possible integration of the Fantastic Four and X-men into the MCU. But is it that simple? (pause for dramatic effect). No, no it isn't. (That was why I paused).

What are the chances of this deal going through? I'd peg it at around 30% right now, but just for the sake of argument (and this article), let's assume it's going to go through.

Let's look at the timeline. They're in preliminary talks right now. Even if the deal was signed tomorrow, which would imply a pretty serious lack of preliminary-ness, it would still take months to go through. There would be various monopoly hearings, business hearings, whatever else happens when you buy a gigantic company, and a whole lot of red tape. So nothing would happen right away from a legal standpoint.

But even then, Marvel isn't buying Fox. Disney would have bought Fox, and it would then own Marvel and Fox as two separate items. But that's not the same thing as Disney buying Marvel and suddenly running the show. This will be two entities under one roof that are compelled to play nice, sure, but they won't suddenly be one group. I'm not sure what would happen with the X-men and FF rights. If they get reverted to the Marvel umbrella as part of the deal, great! But I don't think that's a given. And if that doesn't happen, you'll have a whole lot of internal bureaucracy to wade through before any deals are made. It would be awhile.

And what happens with current Fox movies in the pipeline. Would New Mutants get scrapped if Disney bought Fox? What about the already mostly completed Deadpool 2, or X-men: Let's Do Dark Phoenix Again?

If the deal that Marvel struck with Sony is any indication, Marvel doesn't want pre-existing stuff shoehorned in. You want Spider-Man to join the party? It has to be a new Spider-Man. A Marvel one. I don't see Marvel being happy with Fox continuing their own silo, either. I'm guessing they'd push for integration, which may mean any movies not immediately releasable are probably shelved, and that franchise is dead. I'm not so sad about the idea for most of that universe, but the prospect of no more RyanPool makes me very sad.

But there are other worms that will come pouring out of that can if you suddenly want X-men in the MCU. Where have they been? Why haven't we heard about mutants? It would be a huge issue. Either you have mutants in the shadows with no organization, or you have an X-men team that hasn't helped in any big crises. To be honest, I think the MCU has done a good job making a lot of their big movies fairly self contained in the sense that only a few people really know about the world ending catastrophe coming, so it could be plausible that a non-mentioned super team wouldn't really be around much, but that's a bit of a logical leap. Surely if Professor X was up and about he would have contacted someone to be like "hey, we can help in the future, give us a call".

The other option could be Secret Wars-esque, where you take a different universe and mash it together with the MCU, just like Miles Morales falling into the main world. This solves the problem of "where were the mutants?" but it also has its own problems, like casual fans being confused out of their fucking minds. And as I mentioned before, I don't see Disney or Marvel being too happy getting handed Fox's existing universe. They'd probably want to craft their own mutant friendly silo world before mashing into their existing MCU, and that would take some serious growth time.

I think there are 3 probable options if the acquisition happens:

1) do the Secret Wars thing, possibly with the reality infinity stone, because why not, and mash together some worlds, possibly even using an untouched X-men universe. This means you introduce new characters through that event, and you could develop them once they're here. This has its problems but it would get around some of the timing issues. It would mirror recent decisions like introducing Black Panther and Spider-Man ahead of their solo debut films. I give this around a 25% chance.

2) you assume the mutants have been around in the MCU, but super secretive, probably without organization, and immediately you throw in some easter eggs and various items in the background to allude to mutants in all upcoming MCU movies. Lay a foundation for a few years, then have the X-men form and explain that mutants have been hiding due to fear. You could even use the Sokovia accords as a reason for their mistrust. You'd have a bit of a strange offset with timelines, with the X-men being new and the Avengers being old, but it's the best way to explain mutants being around but not doing much. I give this a 65% chance.

3) You leave them separate, with a reboot or not, depending on how separate Fox would be after the buyout. This would be the most simple, but it would unleash a literal shit-ton of angry fans onto the internet. That's why I give this only a 10% chance.

I personally don't like many of the X-men movies, I think a lot of them were poorly executed. I would be strongly in favor of option 2) with a fresh start for the iconic mutants. But if I'm in charge, I keep Ryan Reynolds making Deadpool movies, and I reference the buyout like crazy in Deadpool 3: MCU Stylin'. Hell, you could even take him from the old universe into the new one with some sort of magic, or whatever the hell you want. Just please, don't rob us of Deadpool. We need Deadpool.

Ultimately, this could all be pointless. The deal really may never happen. But a nerd can dream.

Let me know what you think of this craziness in the comments!

Until next time,


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