Coming Soon got a chance to talk with Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige about the upcoming slate. Kevin must have been feeling generous, ’cause there’s some great new stuff here!
Read on for news about nearly ALL of Marvel’s upcoming movies, with Scramble Network insight and analysis!
On Cap and Thor development:
“I have a writer on ‘Captain America’ right now, hoping to get a director on that very soon to get that into the pipeline within the next year. Same thing with ‘Thor,'” said Feige. “Mark Protosevich has delivered a ‘Thor’ script, David Self is writing ‘Captain America.'”
Protosevich is an interesting choice for THOR– THE CELL blew us away, Poseidon not so much… but his I AM LEGEND script looked good, so we’re definitely giving him a shot.
There’s no question though, that David Self is the PERFECT choice for CAPTAIN AMERICA. His THIRTEEN DAYS script is nothing short of spectacular, one of our all-time faves. That was a difficult job, too– writing a film that’s all dialogue and no action, about foreign diplomacy and U.S. politics. Well, he made it RIVETING. He also wrote the screen adaptation for ROAD TO PERDITION, a fine film. This guy is gonna knock it out of the park, no question. Not only that, but he’s also attached to another Marvel Project, DEATHLOK– though no one is sure of that one’s future.
Anyway, more on that Cap flick:
Feige talked a bit more about Captain America: “We’ll have to play with Captain America as being a patriotic propoganda machine on one hand but also being a very human Steve Rogers interesting fascinating hero in his own right.” Is the script they’re developing a period piece? “Right now what we’re developing would be about half and half.”
That’s great. Plenty of people were nervous about trying to sell Cap to the viewing public strictly as a WWII movie. However, the original plan was to set it during the war, have Cap stuck in the ice at the end, and pull out in a way that leads directly into the highly-anticipated fanboy dream… The AVENGERS movie! More on that:
Feige said that an Avengers movie could be possible in the future. “What was preventing certain characters from crossing over in the past is they were all divvied up for different studios with gates between them and they couldn’t play in the same sandbox. Now we have Hulk, and Thor and Captain and Iron Man and Ant Man… it would certainly indicate to me that it might be fun to see them all in the sandbox at one point. But certainly we’re introducing them and building them in their own franchises first.” Zak Penn will write the script for the film.
Plenty of folks are nervous as hell about that news, which has been out there for some time. Its hard to forgive Penn’s involvement in the disaster that was X3, and he penned that godawful ELEKTRA movie. On the other hand, he did help write X2, and Fantastic Four (which we actually thought was okay). Bottom line: Marvel’s been working with Penn for a long time, and good or bad, they probably wanted to go with someone they knew on this one. This is the crown jewel of Marvel’s self-owned movie set, and they need it to be a genre classic.
Our advice: if they want to deal with the bad blood over Penn’s previous efforts, they should leak that script and prove its got the goods. Otherwise, it could get off to a rocky start when it comes to buzz.
On the X-Spinoffs front:
And what is the status of the Wolverine spinoff? “We have not signed a director yet, Fox has not signed a director yet… there’s a lot of people in the mix. It’s hard, I think it’s very close. I think ‘Wolverine’ will be released first [before ‘Magneto’].”
Why isn’t anyone talking about doing a sort of ‘X-Men: The New Mutants’ spinoff? The end of X3, while horrible, did leave us with a bunch of high-schooled age mutants that could work well together– maybe in a TV series? Feature Rogue, Iceman, Kitty Pryde, Leech, Colossus, and Angel. With the exception of perhaps Rogue’s Paquin, we’d think all these actors would be up for TV work. And woo Kelsey Grammer as Beast to play Mentor to them… could be amazing! If there’s really not going to be an X4 (and how could there be, since Ratner killed everyone off?) that would be a great way to go.
Feige talked INCREDIBLE HULK, which we can’t wait for:
“‘The Hulk’ movie will be different from the first one ’cause this one will be good,” said Feige. “There are certain elements of the first film that I’m proud of, there are other elements that I’m not. In looking to reboot and start the franchise fresh and new, we wanted to start with a clean slate.”
Ang Lee’s HULK will never get the respect it deserves, but this reboot will still be great.
What about Punisher 2, which is drowning in negative buzz?
He added that for The Punisher 2, “Lionsgate is putting that one together with us right now. I think they’ll be announcing a director in the near future and another star in the near future. The only reason I have any interest in doing another ‘Punisher’ movie is to do a better ‘Punisher’ movie. And if Marvel felt we wouldn’t be able to do that, we wouldn’t make it. We have a director, we’d like to announce an actor and a director together.”
Ghost Rider 2 is still looking mired in studio politics. Despite doing very well at the box office on limited promotion, this was Avi Arad’s baby before he left Marvel, and it just doesn’t have the support it needs. Senseless…
What about a Ghost Rider 2, any plans? “Not that I’ve heard, I know they’re promoting the DVD right now. But no discussions yet.”
Sub-Mariner makes no sense for a movie, and would be much better off getting featured in a Fantastic Four film first. But two different studios are involved here, so don’t expect it to go that route:
For the big screen Sub-Mariner adaptation, “Jonathan Mostow is doing a rewrite on [Self’s] script with the intention to direct and that script should be coming in in a few weeks.”
Finally, a little riff on possibilities:
Any chance of a Marvel Zombies adaptation? “‘Marvel Zombies’ would be pretty cool,” said Feige, who added that he’d also love to “put a ‘Power Pack’ script into development, I’d love to do a PG sort’ve ‘Goonies’-style, those films I love as a kid in the ’80s growing up. I’d love to do something like that with ‘Power Pack.”
Hmmm… Power Pack?