For a while now, there’s been a war raging between Marvel and Fox regarding film rights to certain characters. The battle has been intense, especially in regards to the X-Men franchise, but there’s another casualty in this conflict between studios: The Fantastic Four!
Marvel’s first family has been struggling in movie theaters and in Marvel comics. Due to Marvel’s feud with Fox, Marvel decided to cancel its monthly FF book so as not to support or advertise Fox’s FF films. While many hoped that Marvel could strike a deal with Fox like they did with Sony, there’s been no movement on that front. Unfortunately, it seems that this iconic superhero team may never be part of the MCU, but maybe that’s not a terrible thing.
Let’s be honest here: The Fantastic Four haven’t had a great history in film. Fox’s last attempt, Fant4stic, was so bad that it not only failed critically, it completely bombed at the box office. Because of this, fans are convinced Fox is incapable of making a quality Fantastic Four movie and would prefer this iconic team join the ranks of the MCU. However, Fox has recently announced plans for a more “family friendly” FF movie and a Doctor Doom film, so it’s clear they aren’t done with the franchise.
Marvel took more steps to hinder Fox by refusing to promote the Fantastic Four over multiple forms of media. This includes removing them from t-shirts, video games, cartoons, and especially comic books.
The end of 2015’s Secret Wars series gave some of the characters a proper send-off, but it rendered the team permanently defunct. While a few of the other characters are wandering around, they’re mostly bit players in other books.
The Fantastic Four have always been the architects of the Marvel Universe, and their absence feels wrong. Unfortunately, it looks like we won’t see any FF comic for a very long time considering they’re contingent on Marvel and Fox settling their differences.
Needless to say, things seem pretty bleak on multiple sides of the conflict. But in the end, I think things will work out for The Fantastic Four. Even though some of us don’t want to admit it, our current era of superhero movies cannot last forever. Whether it comes sooner or later, these films will eventually start to trickle out and, by that point, Marvel may look past its fight with Fox and decide to bring the team back in style! If that happens, we’ll see a big return of the FF across multiple forms of media.
At the end of the day, we just want to see a good Fantastic Four movie. Although we’d like to see them team up with The Avengers, it’s unlikely that’ll happen anytime soon.
With all these things in mind, it may just be time to accept that the FF may never get a chance to be in the MCU for the foreseeable future, but we’re confident they’ll return to Marvel one way or another. And who knows, maybe something will change and we’ll see an MCU Fantastic Four movie! For now, all we can do is be patient and wait for Marvel’s first family to return to its former glory!