Last week, a rumor hit that Marvel Studios was thinking of separating Avengers 3 into two movies. FBOL Head Honcho Rich Drees listed his main problem with this idea, namely that the Hollywood contracts does not allow studios to split one film into two without renegotiating the contracts of the actors in said film. Since Avengers 3 was the the last film on the contract for a number of actors, this would make such a split a logistical nightmare.
Badass Digest’s Devin Faraci seems to have an answer to this. Contacting his sources at Marvel Studios, he discovered that the plan wasn’t to split Avengers 3 into two films, but to have Avengers 3 not feature the franchise’s “big guns” (I.E. Evans, Hemsworth, Johansson) but rather Marvel’s secondary characters. Avengers 3 will lead into something bigger, something that would end uniting all the Marvel film characters a year later into one epic adventure, including the “big guns” held out of Avengers 3 and possibly the heroes introduced in Marvel’s TV and Netflix offerings.
This new information contains logic flaws that make it even less plausible than the original rumor. How so? Let me tell you:
- Marvel Studios “sources” aren’t terribly reliable: Over the years, gossip sites have reported from their Marvel Studios sources that Black Panther would get a movie in 2014 instead of Guardians of the Galaxy–which we know didn’t happen, that Phase III would be all about setting up Planet Hulk, including a new Hulk film–which was vehemently denied by all parties involved on Marvel’s end with no movement so far on making it happen, except for the rumor that the Hulk will be shot into space at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, which has not been rebuked or confirmed other than Marvel’s denials. It seems that either these sources are not as close to the action as they claim to be or are sent out by Marvel to spread disinformation.
- The Robert Downey Jr. Situation: Robert Downey Jr is arguably the biggest gun Marvel Studios has. He is also signed for only two more movies–Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers 3. Logic dictates that if Marvel wants to save all their big guns for one, last, contractually-mandated hurrah, he’d be the one they’d want their most. And if that hurrah involves Thanos, he’s almost have to be there, considering what Iron Man did at the end of The Avengers. However, he can’t be there because to do so, they’d have renegotiate his contract, something that this whole big gun shifting was supposed to avoid. Faraci thinks that he will stay in Avengers 3 to provide it with some pop then, I don’t know, die? Retire? Be magically transformed into someone who looks like Adam Driver? However, there is a way to keep everyone in Avengers 3.
- No one says Avengers 3 has to arrive in May 2018: Literally. Marvel has yet to announce when Avengers 3 would arrive, other than hint that it will arrive in 2018. People assume that it will be the May film, because that would follow the franchise’s release pattern. However, Marvel has three dates in 2018 alone, and one so far in 2019. We could have the set up film not be an official Avengers sequel, have it run in the May 2018, and have Avengers 3 be the big team up in 2019. Or the set up film in 2017, where there are two unfilled dates, or Avengers 3 the same year as the set up movie, which would make more sense. Or any other combination.
- No one says that Marvel doesn’t want to resign the actors, the actors don’t want to resign, or that Marvel wouldn’t replace them if they do: Faraci’s theory runs on the assumption that the big team up will be the last time we either see these characters on the screen due the actor’s contracts expiring. I doubt that Marvel is going to let these characters be put back on the shelf. And as Faraci contradicts himself, Marvel believes the brand is bigger than the creative help. They have never been afraid to recast either because of money (Terrence Howard) or lack of cooperation (Edward Norton). But their resigning of Downey Jr shows they would be able to work with talent and break out the wallets. DowneyJr has expressed a desire to do Iron Man 4 if Mel Gibson directs it. Marvel could see if he wants it bad enough to sign up for another multipicture deal. Chris Evans wasn’t to take a break from acting to direct. Marvel could allow him to direct one of its films in return for more films with him as Cap.
- What does Secondary Character Mean? Iron Patriot and the Falcon? Doctor Strange and Ant-Man? Some combination of the above?: It is a point that seems purposely vague yet should have been specific. Granted, there are a whole passel of films yet to come out, and new characters are bound to be introduced therein, so we can’t get an entire line-up, but still. Will it be Winter Soldier and Iron Patriot/War Machine, making it essentially and Avengers lite? And how is Black Widow not in here. Yes, Johansson’s stock rose with Lucy, but she has never been more than a secondary character in the films so far, and, unless the deal has changed, should have enough films on her contract to do both?
- This will ask once again why isn’t this character here, and remind us of the answer: The shared universe concept is exciting on face value yet problematic in practice. Yes, it’s fun to have Thor and Iron Man and Captain America team up, but where was everybody when national landmarks were blowing up in Iron Man 3? Or when a big spaceship was carving up a college campus in England in Thor: The Dark World? Or when helicarriers were splashing into the Potomac in Captain America: Winter Soldier? Who knows, because by all rights they should have been there, but their absence was never explained. Expect more of that here. This is setting up a threat that will be big enough to unite everyone, yet it not everyone will be on the ground floor of it.
I could go on, but I think you get the point. There’s a lot of reasons why this rumor doesn’t seem feasible. Only time will tell if it’s not.