Ever since that fateful announcement that Disney is acquiring most of Fox’s media assets for film and television, fans of Marvel Comics in audiovisual form have waited with baited breath for one particular development: the fusion of the X-Men, whose movie rights have been exclusive to Fox, and the MCU.
While many voices, in particular fans of the X-Men who are at best ambivalent to the rest of the Marvel universe, comics or otherwise, would insist that having mutant superheroes joining up with non-mutant characters is not only prohibitively difficult but nigh-impossible. Better for them to remain separate, they’d say.
While Kevin Feige, boss of Marvel Studios and the main creative force behind the MCU, agrees that there’s too much production backlog for an X-Men to other-Marvel team-up, he does have some ideas on what he’d like to see when the time finally comes for the two franchises to unite.
Feige might be on to something, considering that before heading Marvel Studios, he’d earlier worked on the first X-Men film by Fox in 2000, as associate producer. He’d been very candid in admitting that there’s one moment from the X-Men comics that he wanted for the movie, but didn’t materialize.
In one scene, the mutant villain Magneto (Ian McKellen) is confronted by armed police. He uses his magnetic powers to snatch all their firearms. Feige had wanted to replicate the comic-book sequence where Magneto disassembles a gun into all its components in midair. Unfortunately their CGI infrastructure couldn’t handle it.
Talking about his X-Men film production idea, Feige says, “So it was an amazing drawing and I had it up on my desk. And I went, ‘wouldn’t it be cool to do that?’ No. We couldn’t do that. We had wires that lifted up a shotgun and turned it around.”
In the end the movie scene had Magneto turn the guns around at the cops instead. Now that Disney is in the process of integrating their Fox acquisitions and with the bigger budget and tech available nowadays, perhaps Kevin Feige might get his chance several years from now. We’ll see.
Fortunately for Feige, he’d had success in other times he wanted a Marvel Comic shout-out to their MCU film versions. One example is the ending scene of Spider-Man: Homecoming when Aunt May sees Peter in costume, lifted from Amazing Spider-Man comic stories by John Romita Jr. and J. Michael Straczynski.