Marvel Studios Rumored to Regain Full Control of Hulk and Namor Rights
Throughout the last few years, Marvel Studios and the Walt Disney Company have steadily been reassembling their roster of superheroes, whether through lapsed deals that brought Daredevil and Ghost Rider back into the fold or through the purchase of 20th Century Fox, which gave them control of the X-Men and Fantastic Four. But despite the Hulk appearing in Avengers films, there aren't any plans for the Jade Giant to get a solo movie because the film rights belong with Universal Pictures. However, those plans might be changing if a new rumor about the Incredible Hulk's film rights is to be believed.
As indicated by fan site MCU Cosmic, Universal Pictures' film rights to The Hulk and Namor might have finally reverted to Marvel Studios, meaning they wouldn't have to bend over backwards to work with a rival studio and distributor to make new movies featuring those characters. This might be why rumbles of Namor appearing in the Black Panther 2 movie have gained steam, as well as why Marvel Studios is allowed to make a She-Hulk series for Disney+.
Hulk has been one of the most popular characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe ever since Mark Ruffalo took over the role from Edward Norton; that film was initially part of Marvel Studios' push to create a shared universe. The Incredible Hulk even featured Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark in a post-credits scene, and William Hurt's General Thunderbolt Ross has since appeared in Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame, with a role to come in this year's Black Widow.
But that film was released before Disney purchased Marvel, and Marvel Studios itself made multiple deals to get the shared universe off the ground. Since then, there has been rumblings about a Hulk movie, though none of them came together because of the complicated film rights.
Last year, Marvel creative boss Kevin Feige teased that he spoke with Ruffalo about future ideas for the Hulk, indicating that they could come together.
"Many years ago, Mark came in for a meeting with us at Marvel Studios to discuss ways in which the Hulk could grow and evolve in upcoming films," Feige said during a Reddit AMA thread. "He pitched a lot of cool ideas, some of which led to what you saw in Thor: Ragnarok, Infinity War and Endgame, and some of which would still be cool to see someday."
Avengers: Endgame is now streaming on Disney+.