Spider-Man: Far From Home (July 5, 2019) [ENDGAME SPOILERS ALLOWED!]

Josh Steinberg

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It can’t be an accident that Into The Spider-Verse was not only the first Miles Morales film but also one that specifically set up the idea for a general audience that there can be multiple Spider-Men simultaneously across different universes. Really doesn’t seem like it would be too hard to say “I’m Tom Holland Spidey and I’m almost, but not exactly, the one you remember.”
 

Jake Lipson

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It can’t be an accident that Into The Spider-Verse was not only the first Miles Morales film but also one that specifically set up the idea for a general audience that there can be multiple Spider-Men simultaneously across different universes.
You're not wrong. But for the sake of discussion: Spider-Verse made $352 million worldwide. Far From Home has made over $1 billion and counting. That indicates there is a large audience who saw Far From Home who have not been exposed to Spider-Verse. In contrast, Far From Home introduced the concept of a multiverse, but then went out of its way to squash it as being ridiculous.

Really doesn’t seem like it would be too hard to say “I’m Tom Holland Spidey and I’m almost, but not exactly, the one you remember.”
They could try that. However, I don't know if audiences would be as willing to accept that with Tom Holland as those who saw Spider-Verse did for that movie. The shared continuity within the MCU has been its calling card for a long time now, and Holland's character has been so entrenched into the narrative of the wider MCU that it is a bigger ask to ask audiences to accept an alternate version of him than it was for Spider-Verse to introduce multiple Spider-People in the first film of that series.
 
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Sean Bryan

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And who knows, maybe in a few years Sony Pictures will be bought by Apple or Amazon (or other). The general feeling is that the rights would not be transferable in that case and would wind up back with Marvel.

So my hope is that if they don’t work this out sooner it’ll still work out later.
 

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Since no one has seen any of the contracts. How do we know that the next Spider-Man film is forbidden from mentioning characters or activities that appeared in prior Spider-Man films?

Is mentioning (or using flashbacks) of Iron-Man, Stark Enterprises, Happy, Fury completely off the table? These did appear in Sony pictures. Obviously new footage can’t occur, but we are in uncharted territory. For all we know, there may have been some type of ‘easement‘ clause.

It may be that neither side is going to erase history. There just won’t be future crossovers. But the past still will exist
 

Camper

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He really seemed to be after fame and fortune. After "saving the world" and getting rich and famous he could have retired or ditched the Mysterio alter ego or claimed he was going back to "his universe" to look for survivors.
 

Sean Bryan

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Since no one has seen any of the contracts. How do we know that the next Spider-Man film is forbidden from mentioning characters or activities that appeared in prior Spider-Man films?

Is mentioning (or using flashbacks) of Iron-Man, Stark Enterprises, Happy, Fury completely off the table? These did appear in Sony pictures. Obviously new footage can’t occur, but we are in uncharted territory. For all we know, there may have been some type of ‘easement‘ clause.

It may be that neither side is going to erase history. There just won’t be future crossovers. But the past still will exist
That’s something I’ve been wondering about. They shouldn’t be able to use Marvel characters they don’t have the license for going forward, but can they refer to them? Can they name drop?

Any movie by any studio can have a character talking about Superman, Wolverine, Spider-Man, etc... But in those cases they are referring to fictional characters from pop culture. If a movie “pretends” that those characters are part of their film world and uses just the name in that context, is it different?

And of course if they can’t directly reference something they can still be “clever” about it. Remember Spider-Man 2? The folks at the Bugle are trying to come up with a catchy name for Doctor Octavious. Someone suggests Doctor Strange and Jameson says that was taken.

So I’m not sure if they could maybe reference things that have been featured in the previous two films, or if they can name drop anyone they want. But if they can’t do any of those things they can still be “clever”. But I think if they just just tell a good Spider-Man story they’ll ultimately be fine.
 

Jake Lipson

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I don't think they would be able to name drop because Disney owns the trademark to the characters they would want to be name dropping. Your example of "Doctor Strange" being "taken" in Spider-Man 2 isn't an exact comp because Marvel was independently-owned at the time Spider-Man 2 was made. Because they had already been paid by Sony for the Spider-Man film rights, and the MCU didn't exist yet, Sony probably just said, "Hey, do you mind if we mention Doctor Strange as a throwaway joke?" and Marvel probably just said "Sure" because it didn't affect anything they were doing.

Now that Disney owns Marvel, and now that Marvel does have this massive interconnected universe going on, it absolutely would concern them if a movie that they are not involved with references their characters. So I think, now, Disney would probably say no. Of course, this is all guesswork because I haven't seen the deal, but it's what I think is likely.

One of the things that concerns me most is that Sony has a history of doing this crap, as noted in the Forbes article. Sam Raimi made two good Spider-Man films for Sony, and they were, at the time, the biggest comic book movie franchise running. But that didn't stop Sony from meddling with what he wanted to do on Spider-Man 3 -- it's widely known that he didn't want to include Venom, but Sony forced him to do so -- and the film suffered for it. The first Amazing Spider-Man was good enough as restarts go -- I think it is its best self in the places where it's not reiterating stuff that the Raimi films already did, but there are too few of them -- but Sony insisted on cramming all of this setup for a bigger universe into the second film, and it suffered as a result. They have a history of starting off well with Spider-Man (which, under this current version tied to the MCU, Marvel certainly did for them), but then they can't sustain things and botch it once it's up and running and doing well. Based on the trajectory of their past, this would normally be where they come in with demands on the filmmaker and botch it, so I really don't have much confidence in Sony steering the ship from now on, even if they try to mimic the tone of an MCU film with Holland.

Clearly, the best thing to do is for the two studios to find an acceptable compromise which isn't exactly what either of them wants, but will be workable and beneficial to all parties involved. I hope they do that.
 

Sean Bryan

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Tom Holland was at Keystone Comic-Con in Philadelphia yesterday and made these comments:


"It’s not the end of me playing Spider-Man. There’s definitely more to come. We sat down with some of our creatives. We pitched Spider-Man 3, which is going to be something very special, it’s going to be something very different. I’m just so grateful that Marvel changed my life and allowed my dreams to come true and Sony allowing me to continue living my dream."


"It’s a crazy week, and it’s never been done before so we’ll see how it goes and it’ll be as amazing and as fun."

"It’s really exciting, the ideas we have for how we can expand the Spider-Man world and bring new characters into it, and crossover with other people, it’s really exciting. And it’s only going to get bigger and better from here, which is great."

Of course we know about Venom (and the sequel) and Morbius. There have been reports of plans for Black Cat and Silver Sable, and Kraven. It wouldn’t surprise me if they also want to start back with Norman and Harry Osborne and Otto Octavius. I also wouldn’t be surprised at them bringing in live action Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy eventually becoming “Spider-Gwen”.

Spider-Man’s IP is so rich that there is so much to draw from. My concern is that they will do too much too soon and repeat their mistakes from Spider-Man 3 and The Amazing Spider-Man 2. I’d say it’s more likely than not for that to happen. Hopefully something will happen between Marvel and Sony to tame this.
 
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Sean Bryan

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Kevin Feige being his usual diplomatic and polished self, states here that they always knew the arrangement wouldn’t last forever and that they told the story they wanted to tell.


Marvel and Disney went into the arrangement with their eyes wide open, knowing that this was for 5 films and that it was very possible the deal wouldn’t be continued. So what was their intention if that happened? I don’t believe Kevin Feige would intend for the Spider-Man they developed over 5 films to just end. Obviously he would have hoped the deal could be extended, but knowing that it could end was he looking at this as Marvel getting to use Spidey to tell a nice story arc between him and Tony Stark and getting the character “back on his feet” for Sony to ultimately take the reigns? I know he’s being professional here but that is the way he seems to be coming across.

If that’s the case it seems more likely that Marvel could be open to Sony still being able to reference certain events and characters in a limited way. Would be weirder for Marvel to take this stance and then cut off all collaboration with Sony. They’ve generally had a decent collaborative relationship with them even before the deal, which is why the deal was even possible in the first place. Remember when Oscorp Tower was almost in the NYC skyline in The Avengers?

https://www.ign.com/articles/2012/06/15/a-spider-manavengers-crossover-almost-happened
 

Adam Lenhardt

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Emphasis on the speculation. I heard to proposed a while back that Sony might lose the rights to Spider-Man if it were acquired by another studio, and at some point that started to be taken as gospel by the fanbase. But I've never actually seen any official confirmation of that.

I don't think they would be able to name drop because Disney owns the trademark to the characters they would want to be name dropping.
I don't know exactly what the rules are in this situation. It seems like namedropping would be fair use, but knows. If it's not, there are ways around it that Sony can still imply that the future Spider-Man movies take place in the MCU: "There are no men in advanced armor to save you this time!" "Man, I wish the big green guy was around." etc.

If Sony keeps the stakes small enough, they could make a third Holland Spider-Man movie using just Sony-controlled IP and make it seem like it's part of the MCU. If Sony and Disney subsequently mended fences, it could be retroactively given the nod as canon. The problem is if it takes any big swings that have wider implications and then the official MCU movies contradict those big swings with their own choices.

Short of bringing Feige back as producer, I'd like the two studios to at least agree to a non-aggression pact so that their movies can coexist with each other in the same shared universe.
 
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Jake Lipson

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Short of bringing Feige back as producer, I'd like the two studios to at least agree to a non-aggression pact so that their movies can coexist with each other in the same shared universe.
I don't see that happening. I get what you are saying, but Feige runs a tight ship over at Marvel and I doubt he would approve a deal that effectively makes films he didn't have any involvement with as canon. This is also why I don't really buy into the rumors that a new deal between Sony and Marvel would make Venom canon in the MCU, because that would mea Marvel would have to accept into its careful continuity a film which they did not produce (and which was less critically well-liked than their own work generally is.)
 

Adam Lenhardt

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Yeah, I definitely don't think it's likely. But it would be better than nothing.

Longer term, as the MCU enterprise continues to grow and expand, I think Feige needs to cultivate some trusted lieutenants to handle the day-to-day producing so he can step back and focus on the overarching picture as a chief content officer.
 
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Wayne_j

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I wouldn't mind a deal where both Marvel and SONY can agree that each other's characters exist even though what happens in their movies aren't part of canon. This way the movies from either studio can come up with reasons why happy/peter aren't there anymore.
 
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Jeff Adkins

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One of the things that concerns me most is that Sony has a history of doing this crap, as noted in the Forbes article. Sam Raimi made two good Spider-Man films for Sony, and they were, at the time, the biggest comic book movie franchise running. But that didn't stop Sony from meddling with what he wanted to do on Spider-Man 3 -- it's widely known that he didn't want to include Venom, but Sony forced him to do so -- and the film suffered for it. The first Amazing Spider-Man was good enough as restarts go -- I think it is its best self in the places where it's not reiterating stuff that the Raimi films already did, but there are too few of them -- but Sony insisted on cramming all of this setup for a bigger universe into the second film, and it suffered as a result. They have a history of starting off well with Spider-Man (which, under this current version tied to the MCU, Marvel certainly did for them), but then they can't sustain things and botch it once it's up and running and doing well. Based on the trajectory of their past, this would normally be where they come in with demands on the filmmaker and botch it, so I really don't have much confidence in Sony steering the ship from now on, even if they try to mimic the tone of an MCU film with Holland.
The good news is that I don't think any of those same people are around at Sony anymore are they? Feige gave them all sorts of notes on how to fix TASM2 and they didn't take his advice. My guess is that they know better than to make that mistake again.
 

Sean Bryan

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The good news is that I don't think any of those same people are around at Sony anymore are they? Feige gave them all sorts of notes on how to fix TASM2 and they didn't take his advice. My guess is that they know better than to make that mistake again.
Avi “Venom” Arad is still there. And now Sony has Tom Rothman who reportedly likes to meddle in the editing room. X-Men The Last Stand and Origins Wolverine were under his watch at Fox, I believe.

The studio just put out a best picture winner, Into The Spider Verse, but they also just put out Venom. So I think it really boils down to what creative people they hire to make it and how much the studio stays out of their way. Using talent like Lord and Miller to make the next Spider-Man would be a great way to alleviate some anxiety if they don’t get back Jon Watts.
 
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Chris Will

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All I know is that I'm much more interested in a Spider-Verse 2 than a Holland non-MCU Spider-man movie. Removing the MCU kills his version of Spidey. I mean, he's constantly talking about being an Avenger, Happy fell in love with his Aunt, his mentor is Iron Man and now Nick Fury is part of his story. If that stuff is gone then this version of the character loses most of its appeal, for me at least.
 
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