In a surprise announcement today, Sony and Marvel Studios have agreed to extend their sharing agreement that has allowed the Sony owned Spider-Man to play in Marvel’s shared superhero cinematic universe.
There is some confusion on the exact extent of the deal. The Hollywood Reporter, who broke the story, stated that it was for just one more solo Spider-Man film while Deadline is stating that it also allows for rhe character to travel across to Marvel’s films some more.
The news comes from the Hollywood Reporter a month after the two studios had parted ways over sharing the character between their two separate franchises. The initial agreement between the two saw Sony footing the bill for Spider-Man movies, as well as reaping a majority of the profits, while Marvel called the creative shots. In return, Sony allowed Spider-Man to cross over into a number of Marvel’s films including this past summer’s Avengers: Endgame and some Marvel characters have crossed over to appear in the two already-produced Spider-Man films starring Tom Holland.
Although not all the terms of the deal have been released, Marvel’s Kevin Feige will be back in the producer’s chair, running the creative part of the production. Presumably Jon Watts, who has directed the two previous Spider-Man film under this sharing agreement will be back to finish out this trilogy. The as-yet-untitled film has a release date set for July 16, 2021.
This July’s Spider-Man: Far From Home saw the end of that initial deal. Marvel wished to renew the deal but with the proviso that if they were to help finance future films, they would also get a share of the profits. Sony balked at the idea, and it looked as if the era of cooperation between the two had ended.
This is good news for fans, as Far From Home ended with some plot threads left dangling whose resolutions would have felt compromised if they could not rely on characters and concepts on loan from Marvel’s cinematic universe.
Although Spider-Man was created for and still continues to appear in comic books from Marvel Entertainment’s publishing arm, the company had sold off the film rights to the character years ago during a time when the company desperately needed an infusion of cash. The rights eventually landed at Sony who produced five films featuring the wall-crawling superhero before the studio approached Marvel about sharing the character.