Okay, do you want the good news first, or the bad news? Bad news? Okay, then.
The bad news is that Variety is reporting that Marvel is negotiating with Fox to extend the studios rights on Daredevil, which are set to expire if Fox doesn’t start a Daredevil film by October 10 of this year.
The good news is that in exchange for the rights being extended, the Marvel will get the right to use some Fantastic Four characters, which Fox owns the rights to for the foreseeable future, in order to use said characters in the cosmic themed Phase II of the Marvel film franchises.
Don’t get your hopes up too high. Variety suggests that the FF themselves aren’t the characters Marvel wants, so we won’t be able to see Chris Evans play Captain America and Human Torch in the same film (darn it!). The industry journal states that Marvel wants Galactus and Silver Surfer from Fox to use in the new “cosmic” path the Marvel films are taking.
While the space-faring Silver Surfer and the planet-eating Galactus would definitely fit in with the intergalactic films Marvel will be making, they don’t seem to be that great of a fit with the direction the films are taking. Galactus is as, if not more, powerful than Thanos, so including him and Thanos in The Guardians of the Galaxy or Avengers 2 might be a bit of overkill. And having the character simply make a cameo probably wouldn’t be worth this much effort. However, there are two other Fantastic Four supporting characters that Marvel might have their eye on that would be a better fit.
Annihilus is a villain who first appeared in Fantastic Four Annual #6 and fought the team numerous times over the years. He is an alien being who lives in an antimatter universe called the Negative Zone. Fanatical about staying alive, he is fixated with killing anything that he considers a threat to his life. Unfortunately, this means just about every other living thing.
Annihilus was the main villain in the Annihilation miniseries, the series where members the current version of the Guardians of the Galaxy united to stave off his invasion of our universe. Since he played a part in the origin of the team in the comic books, it seems natural that Marvel might want him to serve the same role in The Guardians of the Galaxy film as well, considering many of the same characters have been carried over.
The next character might not be part of the Fantastic Four characters that Fox owns, but his not being included in the plans for Phase II leads me to believe his rights are owned by someone other than Marvel, and if not Fox, then who?
Adam Warlock made his first appearance in Fantastic Four #66 as “Him,” a genetic creation of a cadre of mad scientist called The Enclave, who were endeavoring to create the ultimate humanoid life form that they could clone into an army and use to conquer the Earth. Unfortunately for them, their creation was imbued with immeasurable cosmic power and was too powerful control. “Him” eventually left Earth for the stars, took the name Adam Warlock, and fought to make the galaxy safe.
If Thanos has an arch-nemesis, it would be Adam Warlock. Many a legendary comic book arc feature those two going at it, often times with one of both characters dying (or being brought back). Having Thanos in the the films without Warlock is like having a movie with Laurel but not Hardy. Just doesn’t seem right. By the way, Warlock was also a member of the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Of course, Deadline is reporting that their sources at Fox are denying the talks of the trade, and that they are really excited about the Josh Trank take on the Fantastic Four characters and that the talks are about Fox and Disney co-financing the Daredevil film, yada yada yada. I wonder if they are the same sources that told Deadline that Jessica Biel was a lock for Viper in The Wolverine, a fact that I’ll repeat with every Deadline news item because it was totally wrong.
I guess we’ll have to see which news organization’s sources are more connected. As they say, the story is developing.