There’s been a LOT of Marvel news lately, which I basically never got around to commenting on/noting. I’ll probably cover some of that this week, so I apologize if I mention things that are old news at this point.
Although Marvel is putting out their own movies now, several studios still retain the live action film rights to some of Marvel’s hottest properties, as with Sony having the right to make Spider-Man movies. Fox owns X-Men (and, sadly, the Fantastic Four), and since the licence will eventually lapse if it remains dormant until 2012, they have a good motive to keep moving on that.
I think most people liked the X-Men movies, but didn’t really love them. Certainly the bar has been raised substantially since the X-Men series started, what with really good, even great, superheroes like Spider-Man 2, Iron Man and The Dark Knight having come out. Certainly the X-Men movies didn’t pretty much suck (unlike Fox’s two FF films), but they really need to improve future ones if they want to draw audiences expecting better stuff.
Fox is following an interesting strategy, actually, which is to focus on offshoots. Next year Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine gets his own movie; while Magneto is being mulled for a solo picture as well. Also on the slate is an adaptation of the comic book X-Men: First Year, which chronicals the very early days of the nascent superhero team. Presumably this would focus on the original teen X-men, although Fox might be worried about contradicting the continuity of their first three films, wherein some of the original X-Men, like Ice Man, are actually younger than the people then in the team.
Frankly, I don’t think movie audiences care as much about continuity as these people think. Just announce that it’s a relaunch, and go to it. If I had my choice, we’d indeed get the adventures of the teenage versions of Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Angel, Ice Man and the Beast. Chances are that isn’t going to happen, though.
I’ll tell you what, though, Fox. Just make ’em good, and you can do whatever you want. And your plans to relaunch Daredevil? Okey-dokey.
But please, let that FF option lapse. Please!