X-MEN: DARK PHOENIX Canceled? Here Are All The Possible Ramifications Of The Fox/Disney Deal

Disney's acquisition of 21st Century Fox's assets was made official today and Deadpool, the Fantastic Four, and X-Men are coming to the MCU. However, the ramifications of this deal stretch far beyond that.

It's been coming for a while but this morning saw Disney send out a press release confirming that they've purchased a number of 21st Century Fox's assets. For comic book fans, the most exciting thing about that is the fact that it means characters from the worlds of the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool will now be able to join The Avengers and company in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

"The agreement also provides Disney with the opportunity to reunite the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Deadpool with the Marvel family under one roof and create richer, more complex worlds of inter-related characters and stories that audiences have shown they love," reads the press release. 

However, this deal is going to have some major ramifications for both the MCU and the Marvel movies Fox has released and has on the way over the next few years. Here, we take an in-depth look at what some of those might be and it's fair to say that things will never be the same again as the House of Mouse just became even more powerful in the world of superhero movies and Hollywood as a whole.

Avengers 4 Gets A Rewrite

When Marvel Studios realised they could bring Spider-Man into Captain America: Civil War, the movie underwent last-minute rewrites to bring the wall-crawler into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Avengers 4 is currently well into shooting so we can forget about too many alterations being made but don't be surprised if there's some sort of mention of the mutant gene thrown into the mix.

Whether that comes about as a result of the Infinity Gauntlet or is just casually mentioned remains to be seen but an after-credits scene could very well even pay a visit to the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters even if it's just a shot of the school being opened by a bald man whose face is never shown. Whatever happens, I would definitely expect some sort of reference to the X-Men here. 

A Lot Of Cancelled Movies

There are a lot of casualties of this deal and some fans will probably be upset by that while others may be relieved. As we've mentioned, there's no way X-Men: Dark Phoenix is getting a sequel, while that Logan spinoff revolving around X-23 is now as good as dead. The same goes for X-Force - for now, at least - and Deadpool 3 has probably been put on ice for the time being as well. 

That long delayed Gambit movie starring Channing Tatum is also finally dead, while James Franco's plans for a Multiple Man movie can be forgotten about as well. Oh, and Josh Boone is never going to be able to make that New Mutants sequel he's talked so much about! On the Fantastic Four side of things, Doctor Doom's spinoff can be forgotten about as can that Fantastic Four movie from the point of view of Franklin and Valeria Richards. These ideas could live on in other forms but don't bank on it. 

More MCU Movies Get Delayed

When Marvel Studios made a deal with Sony Pictures to bring Spider-Man into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, a couple of big upcoming releases got delayed to make room for the wall-crawler. Now that Kevin Feige has so many new franchises and characters to play with, we can probably expect to see some MCU stalwarts get the short end of the stick to make room for the X-Men! 

That's not the end of the world, of course, but with fans anxious to see the likes of Doctor Strange 2, another Thor film, and follow-ups to upcoming releases like Black Panther and Captain Marvel, we may have to brace ourselves to wait a little longer for the return of familiar faces after the introduction of so many new ones. Then again, this is the X-Men and Fantastic Four we're talking about!

Ryan Reynolds Walks Away From Deadpool

It's interesting that the press release announcing the Fox deal mentioned Deadpool separately from the X-Men but that's no doubt a result of the character finding so much success on his own. Now that it's been confirmed that the Merc with the Mouth is coming to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's possible the studio will want to move the character into a PG-13 setting and that could prove to be problematic for Ryan Reynolds as the actor has had a lot of creative control with the franchise so far. 

As a result, we could see him decide to walk away from the character he's made such a sensation but it is, of course, feasible that Disney will commit to making R-Rated Marvel movies after witnessing the success of Deadpool and Logan. That wouldn't stop the character from being part of the MCU but just means that we may not see quite so many cameo appearances from big franchise names.

Doctor Doom Becomes The MCU's New Big Bad

There have been conflicting reports about whether the Fantastic Four would be bundled with the X-Men but today's press release confirmed that. Whether or not the team will get a movie of their own in the near future remains to be seen but Kevin Feige is no doubt going to be quick in utilising characters like the Silver Surfer and Galactus (he once offered Fox the chance to keep Daredevil in return for being able to use those two in the Marvel Cinematic Universe). 

Regardless of what becomes of Reed Richard and company, though, I think it's fair to say that Doctor Doom has all the makings of a new big bad after Thanos. Sure, he's tried to that foursome in a very important way but it's about time the villain is done justice on the big screen and there's no one better than Marvel Studios to achieve that. Doom vs. The Avengers would be very cool to see. 

The Emergence Of The Mutant Gene Starts Sooner Than We Think

There may not have been a mention of the X-Men or mutants in the Marvel Cinematic Universe before now but it won't be hard for that to change. Spider-Man: Homecoming 2 would be the perfect place for a couple of the youngster's classmates to be exposed as mutants while there are plenty of bad guys in his rogues gallery who could have their origin stories tweaked somewhat.

Rather controversially, Marvel could even make Spider-Man a mutant, revealing that the gene lay dormant in him before he was bitten by that radioactive spider and granted spectacular abilities. 

My gut tells me that the emergence of the mutant gene will be tied to some sort of world-altering event (Thanos' invasion, for example) but it's every bit as likely that mutants have simply been in hiding over the years just as they were before the X-Men went public in the comic books. 

The X-Men Never Get To Reach The Millennium

Ever since X-Men: First Class was released, the franchise has jumped ahead a decade with each subsequent instalment. Well, there's no way a sequel to X-Men: Dark Phoenix is ever being made now so that means we can forget about seeing the current iteration of this team in the 2000s. Is that a big deal? Not really but it obviously means that a lot of stories in the X-Men Universe will never be told.

The downside of that is that we lose actors like Tye Sheridan, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and James McAvoy but Marvel is great at casting so can no doubt find some good alternatives. 


X-Men: Dark Phoenix = Cancelled

X-Men: Dark Phoenix finished shooting not too long ago and while the movie was recently the subject of an Entertainment Weekly cover story, it's entirely possible Disney will just scrap it and that it will never see the light of day. That may seem like a tremendous waste of money but the post-production process has only just started and the studio might be happier doing that than releasing a subpar Simon Kinberg X-Men movie which sours fans on the characters before they enter the MCU.

After all, if the presence of mutants is first going to be teased in Avengers 4, Marvel Studios won't want X-Men: Dark Phoenix hitting theaters five months beforehand, confusing people as to what comes next for the heroes. Ultimately, this one depends on how good the movie is because it could be used as a sendoff for the current iteration of the franchise or possibly even released straight to home video. 
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