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As far as superhero movies go, it goes without saying that Marvel Studios has taken the throne over the past few years. Establishing a major Cinematic Universe which has become massively popular among comic book fans and regular movie-goers alike, it’s hard to stay clear of the juggernaut duo that is Marvel & Disney.
But that hasn’t necessarily stopped other studios from continuing their voyage in the superhero genre; Sony is currently establishing its own cinematic universe with Spider-Man, and FOX is continuing its now-14 year run of X-Men films, as well as attempting to revive the previously-failed Fantastic Four film franchise.
FOX is set to reveal their latest X-Men feature, Days of Future Past, on May 23rd, and their reboot of The Fantastic Four set for a June 2015 release. The studio has also planned yet another mutant adventure in X-Men: Apocalypse, coming in 2016.
But apparently FOX has more faith than some critics and fans do at this point, as they have just announced the initial release dates for a sequel to 2013’s The Wolverine, a sequel to The Fantastic Four (mind you, a film that is still in pre-production), as well as another untitled Marvel-based project.
The sequel to The Wolverine has been announced for a March 3rd, 2017 release date, with The Fantastic Four sequel set for later that year on July 14th. The previously-mentioned, untitled Marvel project has been scheduled for July 13th, 2018. The news of a Wolverine sequel comes to no surprise, as it has been heavily mentioned by the first films’ director James Mangold, who also recently announced that the sequel would film after X-Men: Apocalypse.
The real surprise falls with a sequel to The Fantastic Four; a reboot project that has, even in its early stages of production, received poor fan reception towards its potential plot and casting. Many have hoped FOX would fail to meet the deadline to produce another FF movie so that the rights would revert back to Marvel Studios, though it seems FOX is defying all hope and attempting a universe of its own, featuring Marvel’s “first family”.
As for the untitled Marvel film, odds are it will be some sort of X-Men spin-off. When you look at it, FOX doesn’t have a lot to work with anymore as far as Marvel characters go; The X-Men and Fantastic Four are their two big remaining properties. Could FOX attempt to revive the Gambit character (previously introduced in X-Men Origins: Wolverine)? Could they attempt another Origins film? Could it even be yet another X-Men feature?
Personally, I think that if FOX is so confident in the Fantastic Four that they’ve already announced a 2017 sequel, we could maybe even see an X-Men-Fantastic Four crossover in 2018. It’s definitely possible. It would be two years since X-Men: Apocalypse, just about right for another installment.
Either way, the untitled film is scheduled to open over four years from now, so at this point anything can happen.
At the same time, the studio also announced that Liam Neeson’s Taken 3 will arrive in theaters on January 9th, 2015, and that an undetermined Ridley Scott film will be released on March 4th, 2016.
What do you think about FOX announcing sequels to The Wolverine and The Fantastic Four, as well another Marvel film?
X-Men: Days of Future Past hits theaters May 23rd, and The Fantastic Four on June 19th, 2015.
Written by Josh Sazin on 3/21/14