When the Marvel cards started to fall at Netflix, Iron Fist was the first show to be sent to the chopping block. Despite a substantial improvement in quality between its first and second seasons, the show was still a casualty of the streaming wars launched when Disney worked to start its own service in Disney+. Now, a year and a half after its cancellation, fans have started reminiscing about a time when Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige said he thought the character had big-screen potential.
The comment came during a 2010 interview between Feige and MTV News. When MTV's Josh Horowitz asked the producer which "second echelon" characters that interested him and the studio, Feige listed off Iron Fist among Black Panther, Doctor Strange, and the Guardians of the Galaxy.
"You know, the ones that are coming up...I think what Brubaker and Fraction have done with [Immortal] Iron Fist recently is exciting," Feige said. "I think Black Panther and Wakanda has amazing potential to be a feature. Doctor Strange, as you've mentioned. Then there are obscure titles like Guardians of the Galaxy that has been revamped recently in a fun way."
As you might expect, Redditors on r/MarvelStudios had their fair share of opinions about the decade-old comments.
"I actually enjoyed the Netflix Iron Fist," u/PiceaSignum writes.
"I really hope Iron Fist shows up in Shang-Chi, he'll probably be new actor though," speculates u/MileenaisShit.
u/StokedUpOnKrunk adds, "My man talking up Fraction and Brubaker's Iron Fist run. What I wouldn't give to see a multidimensional arena tournament in full glory."
Interestingly enough, every character Feige mentions in the clip subsequently received a Marvel Studios blockbuster. Each character, of course, besides Iron Fist. Now, it's been reported Marvel Studios is unable to use the character — and any other characters that appeared on Netflix like Luke Cage and Daredevil — for a full two years after the show's cancellation.
Prior to the character's debut in the Netflix series, Iron Fist was someone that receive multiple treatments over the years. In 2000, Ray Park had been cast as Danny Rand in a feature from Artisan Entertainment that fizzled out. Then in 2010, right around the time Feige gave the aforementioned interview, Rich Wilkes had been hired to pen a feature film script for Marvel Studios.
Both seasons of Iron Fist are now streaming on Netflix.
Cover photo by Amy Sussman/FilmMagic