The confirmation that Disney is working to acquire 20th Century Fox raised some eyebrows. Many are concerned about the monopoly they would hold if the deal went through, but that’s not what I’m going to talk about here. I’m going to talk about the Marvel properties. Yes it’s only part of the full picture, but it’s important to a lot of people.
Warning: Minor, tiny, spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 below. It's not even a spoiler, but don't read if you hate knowing anything about films before you watch them.
Even before the confirmation of Disney trying to acquire Fox the theories started flying about how we could see so many more Marvel characters coming into the Marvel Cinematic Universe - whatever it looks like by that time. X-Men fighting with the Avengers, Fantastic Four, introduction of the Illuminati, and the possibility of using Galactus as the big bad post-Phase 3.
Anyway, cool fan theories and fantasies aside, one big concern people seem to have is that Disney wouldn’t ever create the movies which Fox has given us over recent years. Movies like Deadpool and Logan show a less than shiny view on the superhero genre that Marvel Studios have been delivering with the MCU.
Sure, Disney probably wouldn’t have given us Deadpool or Logan if they’d had the rights all along. To be honest, they probably would have never been in a position where they felt it necessary. Marvel Studio’s track record with movies is pretty great, from both a critical and financial standpoint, so in that alternate universe they probably wouldn’t have been pushed to try something like Logan.
Saying that, the fear that if the deal goes through that Disney won’t be inclined to do R-rated movies for there superhero properties seems unlikely to me.
Firstly, the Netflix shows are connected to the MCU. They may be connected in a one-way system, where the movies affect the series but the series doesn’t have any relevance to the movies, but they are connected and there’s a public association between them. The public see these violent shows and see there is a link between them and the more ‘Disney’ movies, and I think that means a lot.
Secondly, people seem to ignore just how dark the MCU movies can get. I’m of the opinion that some of the movies push the boundaries of the certificate they are given, a 12 here in the UK, to degrees that show that Disney aren’t as fluffy as people tend to accuse them of being - or, at the very least, they don’t push there fluffiness on Marvel Studios as much as people think they would.
I recently rewatched Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and was reminded of just how ‘non-Disney’ that scene with Rocket and Yondu is. Yondu and Rocket, especially Yondu, are literally murdering countless ravagers on that ship as they are executing their escape. The ravagers don’t even get a chance to fight back, many die before realising what’s going on. That’s some dark stuff for a ‘kids’ movie.
GotG Vol. 2 is a mainstream movie, essentially for kids from 8 years old and up, and there’s slow-mo mass murder to a cool soundtrack. I’m not saying this to criticise the movie at all, I’m using this as an example to show why I am not that concerned about the future of movies like Deadpool.
Fox have done the hard work for Disney already, they have put he money on the line and proven it works if done well. I fully expect them to have a ‘mature’ Marvel brand for the likes of Deadpool. Maybe it will cross over with the MCU, maybe it will be like the Netflix shows and be one-way, but I don’t see there being issue with Disney allowing Marvel Studios to continue down the road of making movies for an adult audience. At the end of the day, would Disney turn down a way to make more money?