There’s no denying that Marvel Studios is leading the pack when it comes to superhero cinema, thanks to their constantly-expanding cinematic universe. It’s hard to believe how far they’ve come in the six years since Iron Man was released and according to President of Production Kevin Feige, they’ve got plans for future films all the way to 2021.
Seeing as the studio has already completed Phase One and are now halfway through a post-Avengers Phase Two, they will have to carefully balance bringing in new characters with those they’ve already established. With so many things already laid in place, is there still room for once-planned but seemingly cast-aside properties to see the light of day? According to Iron Man 3 scribe Drew Pearce, one such film, Runaways, may still have that chance.
Pearce was initially brought into the Marvel fold to pen the script for Runaways, based on the comic created by Brian K. Vaughn and Adrian Alphona. For those who don’t know, the series is about a group of teens who discover that their parents are super-villains, then go out on the run to bring them down and discover that they’ve inherited powers of their own.
Marvel Studios began production on the film a few years ago, planning for Pearce’s script to be helmed by Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist director Peter Sollett with a March 2011 production start date. Unfortunately, the project was scrapped when The Avengers really started to take shape as the studio felt that it was one team-up film too many. So, Pearce jumped on board of Iron Man 3 instead.
Not much has been heard of the film since, as Marvel Studios have their hands full with potential new properties (Doctor Strange, Ms. Marvel, The Inhumans, and Black Panther) as well as future sequels (Avengers 3, Thor 3, and Captain America 3); but Pearce himself is hopeful that Runaways could still have a chance at getting made, depending on how successful Guardians of the Galaxy is. IndieWire recently spoke to the writer about the upcoming “All Hail the King” one-shot that he directed, and couldn’t resist asking him about his experience on writing Runaways:
“It was a fantastic, challenging, but really satisfying experience. I think we ended up with a script that was really exciting for the Marvel Universe. It’s something I know is still something that Kevin [Feige] is still very fond of and think could be a great movie…Whether it shows up in the Marvel Universe is a different question because I feel like ‘Runaways’ is somewhat more of a marketing challenge, as opposed to here is one guy who the movie is named after. It’s a lot easier to market ‘Dr. Strange’ than to market ‘Runaways.'”
To be fair, it is going to be challenging to market new films based on characters that casual audiences may not be familiar with, but the Marvel brand is so strong now that most people could easily get excited about a film as long as it has that famous Marvel logo attached to the trailer. The studio will press their luck this summer when Guardians of the Galaxy hits theaters, a film that is easily their biggest risk yet. However, if it succeeds, it may give them confidence to move forward with their lesser-known characters.
“Hopefully ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ will be a gigantic hit and that will open up the Marvel Universe to more team-based projects and I hope that ‘Runaways’ might then be afforded more of a chance.”
So, though nothing is set in stone, it’s nice to hear that Runaways hasn’t been cast aside completely. It sounds like it could be a great film, and would give us a glimpse at the Marvel cinematic universe we haven’t seen yet. Though it’s easy to predict which films the studio has in the pipeline leading up to that 2021 date Feige has talked about, it’s refreshing to hear that we may be getting some fresh content mixed in with the inevitable Captain America, Thor, and (eventually) Iron Man sequels.
What do you think of a possible Runaways movie? Would you like to see it get made, or would you rather Marvel focus on bringing other characters to the screen? Let us know in the comments below!