After the success of Deadpool and Logan, 20th Century Fox changed up its strategy for the X-Men franchise, making way for more unique takes on the mutants for feature films. While the main franchise will continue with X-Men: Dark Phoenix releasing later this year, fans can expect unique angles in their movies in the future.
But, what about the impending deal with the Walt Disney Company?
Some fans are wondering why all of these new X-Men films are in the works when Fox is intending to sell off its entertainment assets to Disney, finally bringing the popular franchise under the banner of Marvel Studios. The crossovers between Avengers and X-Men seem inevitable.
President Kevin Feige isn't likely to just merge the two cinematic universes as they are, especially with the convoluted X-Men timeline and the streamlined continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. How would it work when mutants have never been mentioned before, but Inhumans are somewhat common?
The X-Men franchise will likely receive somewhat of a reboot when it comes under control of Disney, with Feige using as few hangups and ties to previous films as possible when they finally debut in the MCU. So, with the sale pending, why is Fox planning a Kitty Pryde movie, or an X-Force movie, or a Gambit movie, or a Madrox movie, and all of the other projects in the works?
Well, there are a couple factors at play here, one being how long it will take before the deal is finalized. Because of the size of the companies, anti-trust regulators must approve all facets of it before the purchase can actually be finalized. The regulation process could take up to two years, though it's likely to be finished sometime in the middle of 2019. And even then, something could prevent such a deal from taking place.
And until then, it's business as usual for Fox. They're still an entertainment company that must make money and continue turning a profit for their many investors. And one of Fox's most valuable properties is the X-Men franchise — not to mention that the superhero business is booming right now.
Fox isn't just going to sit and wait for the Disney purchase to go through so Feige can start working the Marvel Studios magic. They're going to continue with the strategy they started with Deadpool and Logan, following up with more genre-bending spinoff films like The New Mutants and Deadpool 2.
And even when the purchase does go through, it's not like Disney is going to halt the progress of the films that are already in production or in the late stages of development. If there are three films in the works when the purchase finally goes through, expect to see those three films in theaters. And then, what happens if one of them is a smash hit and fans demand a sequel?
There is a lot of possibilities at play in this deal, and that's just looking at the X-Men franchise itself. There are many questions for execs to mull over as Disney's vast portfolio grows even more.
Kevin Feige himself stated that he is not even thinking about the X-Men franchise at this point, and fans shouldn't expect to see Wolverine pop up in the post-credits scene for a future Avengers movie.
Fox will continue to make their X-Men movies for the foreseeable future. That's the truth that Marvel fanboys are going to have to deal with.
The next mutant movie from Fox is Deadpool 2, premiering in theaters on May 18th.