With Disney’s acquisition of the 20th Century Fox film and television divisions set to close any day now, it seems like a sure bet that a number of projects that were in development at the studio will most likely end up on the scrap heap. For fans of Fox’s X-Men franchise that means films like Gambit and Kitty Pride will most likely not make it into theaters once those characters are moved over to Disney subsidiary Marvel Studios. But according to Fargo creator Noah Hawley, the screenplay he wrote to spinoff the Fantastic Four villain Doctor Doom may survive the transition.
Speaking with Deadline, Hawley revealed that he has had a discussion with Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige about the screenplay and has offered to pass along a copy for his perusal, though he admits that they have had no further conversations about the film.
Hawley has described his screenplay as a “Cold War-era, geopolitical” thriller in which Victor Von Doom, the ruler of the isolationist nation of Latveria, decides to open up the country to the outside world and as part of the process invites the first outside journalist to the region. (I would imagine that there are some parallels to North Korea that could be made.)
While I am sure that fans are anxious to see a Doctor Doom fighting his long-time nemesis the Fantastic Four in a new movie under the aegis of Marvel Studios. Given the previous attempts to bring these characters to the big screen, Marvel can only succeed where Fox previously failed. But even with the prospect of a good Fantastic Four film, do we really need Doom showing up as the bad guy? Personally, I would much prefer to see a deeper dive into the FF’s character bench than what we have seen so far. That doesn’t mean that Marvel couldn’t pursue Hawley’s take on the character. Have the FF off in their own film, but introduce the concept of the country of Latveria and Doom in a separate film from Hawley. Heck, if done the right way, it could be sort of the antithesis of Black Panther.
Alternatively, maybe spin off Dr. Doom into a non-MCU film of his own. Warners seems to be experimenting with the idea that some of its superhero movies will be connected, while others – like the Todd Haynes directed- The Joker – are getting their own standalone feature, unfettered by the larger franchise’s concerns for interconnectivity.