When Marvel was dipping their feet into the movie business, they were looking for any kind of lucrative deal. Unfortunately, back in those days, the studios had the upper hand; comic book movies were few and far between and it was DC that ruled the box office with the Batmans and Supermans. Yeah, there was Howard the Duck and The Punisher, but those just never took off.
What people don’t know is that Marvel had been trying to push Spider-Man as a movie for decades, as far back as the 70’s. When the title finally pushed through, it was a big risk.
But the risk was worth it.
Flash forward to modern day. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is in full swing; they’re well in to Phase 2 of the franchise. Every movie in the series was, more or less, a blockbuster and even if the movie didn’t appear to do well, it would be compensated because people just want to learn the overall story.
Now Marvel is looking to push a little more by telling one of the biggest comic book story lines in the last 10 years: Civil War. For those that don’t know, in a nutshell, the story is about the government passing a bill regarding the mandatory registration of super heroes, mutant or otherwise. With that, the public would finally know the supposed secret identities of some of the heroes that had been trying to blend into society. While some were fine with it, others weren’t, and therein became the basis for Civil War.
Captain America 3 is billed as Civil War. What makes this a truly must-see movie is that it pits Captain America with Iron Man in a battle of powers and wills. What makes this a problem is that the pivotal character in this scenario is Spider-Man…and one of the biggest story twists in Marvel history happens when Spider-Man decides to reveal his identity to the public.
As a result, his costume goes through an Iron Man makeover:
Which leads me to this meat of this article. Sony had negotiated a deal with Marvel to produce the Spider-Man movies and STILL retains the production rights to the Spider-Man films and merchandise that come from it (i.e. Sony keeps profits from the black guy, blue-glowy Electro, but Marvel can keep all the profits from the white guy, yellow and green Electro). But Sony had been stingy with releasing the rights because, well, Sony wants all the money (same goes for 20th Century Fox’s ownership of the X-franchise, but that’s another article).
Comicbookmovie.com has reported that Marvel and Sony has reportedly agreed on a deal to have Spider-Man appear in the Civil War movie. While this is information taken from the famous Sony hack recently, it’s safe to say that both parties look to profit huge on this deal since it doesn’t look like the MCU will stop anytime soon.
If Spider-Man appears in Captain America: Civil War, Sony will co-finance 25% of the movie. Marvel then co-finances 25% of Spider-Man’s next solo film which is scheduled to be released in July 2017. The deal allows Sony to use TWO major Marvel characters and continue the plot from Civil War in regards to how it relates to Spider-Man. Spider-Man would also appear in Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 in 2018, with another Marvel produced Spider-Man movie following in July 2019.
Sony asked for approval over the costume, script (but only the parts specifically involving Spider-Man), and casting, with said actor required to sign a three-picture deal or more. The way this part of the document is worded makes it sound very much like a collaboration rather than one studio having more control than the other. They do however point out that Kevin Feige must serve as a producer, and if for some reason he leaves Marvel, they would be allowed to select his replacement. They also want Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach to be given executive producer credits, and state that it would be pre-agreed that Drew Goddard both writes and directs the first movie.