It's a sad day for X-Men fans, at least if you're a big proponent of Marvel Studios.
For years there have been rumors circulating that FOX, who owns both the X-Men and Fantastic Four franchise movie rights, would at some point either sell the franchises back to Marvel or land on some kind of deal that would allow the fan favorite mutants to join with Marvel's other cinematic properties.
Unfortunately some recent comments from Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige pretty much hammered the final nail in that coffin.
Feige spoke to Variety about a myriad of topics, and at one point was asked since if they could partner with FOX as they did with Sony for Spider-Man. Feige said "It’s an impossibility at this juncture. We certainly have enough films to keep us busy for a number of lifetimes."
Yeah, that's a pretty solid no, and unfortunately, it doesn't look to change anytime soon. Recent reports out of FOX indicate that they are interested in rebooting their X-Men universe, as well as building upon the successful foundation of Deadpool. They've also got a New Mutants project in the works alongside the ever delayed Gambit project and the rumored X-Force project.
Still, it's a bit disappointing that both sides couldn't come to an agreement like Marvel did with Sony, though it bears mentioning that those franchises are in two different places. Sony had the rights to one character and anything affiliated with him, whereas FOX has the rights to two premiere Marvel groups and their huge worlds. Sony had also previously rebooted the character twice already and wasn't interested in doing it for a third time unless it was sure it had something, thus the Marvel deal. Sony can rely on Marvel Studio's expertise in regards to their premiere character, and Sony reaps the benefits with spinoff's and additional advertising and goodwill.
While they aren't pursuing a full-on merging of their properties, the two studios can at least work together in some capacity. The two companies previously made a deal that let Marvel Studios have EGO the living planet for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. FOX was then allowed to make significant changes to Negasonic Teenage Warhead for Deadpool.
Feige isn't wrong about a full schedule either, as Marvel Studios has plans for years to come, and has plenty of other characters to implement into their film universe.