The geek world imploded a few weeks back when it was reported that Disney is working on purchasing the bulk of 20th Century Fox. Immediately, fans either got excited to see properties such as the X-Men merge with the House of Mouse or bemoaned the unstoppable dominance of Disney. Shortly after this report came out, though, we were told that the whole thing might already be dead in the water, as talks between the two companies had apparently cooled.
Now, however, we’ve learned that we should ignore that second report as the notion has allegedly not yet been thrown out. According to Deadline, the two parties are still very much in discussions and Disney is apparently “progressing speedily toward” the acquisition. As we heard before, the plan is still for Fox to keep their sports and news properties, while the House of Mouse takes everything else in terms of film and TV.
“I know you want to talk about the legacies of those exposed in these sexual assault and harassment scandals, but I just want to start with a juicy rumor that is fast gaining steam in town today, that Disney is progressing speedily toward that rumored acquisition of Fox,” says Deadline’s report.
“The version I heard has the Murdoch clan keeping possession of sports and news properties, and the rest of TV and the film studio going to Disney. Radio silence right now from both studios, and given how Disney made the Marvel and Lucasfilm deals under the cone of silence, if this happens we’ll probably only know it when it’s announced. It is certainly being talked about today. Not surprisingly, the reaction around town is not enthusiasm, because of the uncertainty that comes with potentially reducing a major studio to content generators under the Disney silo system.”
Though the X-Men and/or Fantastic Four crossing over into Marvel’s cinematic universe is the stuff comic book dreams are made of, there’s always the possibility that Disney would simply keep the X-Men universe running just as it currently is. After all, with its newfound emphasis on spinoff movies like Logan and Deadpool and successful TV series, the franchise is in very healthy shape.
According to earlier reports, though, it doesn’t sound like that’s what the House of Mouse plans to do. Understandably, one of the main reasons Disney is so interested in purchasing Fox is so that they can secure the rights to the Marvel characters that their rival studio currently owns – those being the X-Men, Fantastic Four and a few others – and consolidate them all under the same banner.
This would seem to suggest that they want to build one, cohesive shared universe, and while that’s certainly very exciting, there are potential drawbacks that could stem from the two toy boxes becoming one. As Ryan Reynolds pointed out, what would such a venture mean for the likes of Deadpool, whose R-rated humour would surely clash with the House of Mouse’s family-friendly image? Ditto for other edgy properties like X-Force and even that potential X-23 spinoff.
For now, there’s no point in getting all worried as this isn’t a done deal just yet. However, if Deadline’s right with their scoop, then it may very well be happening and if it does, you get bet that it’s going to shake up the industry in a massive way.