One of the more interesting things to come out last week was that in order to try and secure rights to a Joe Carnahan infused Daredevil, a reboot of the franchise that once starred Ben Affleck as the “Man Without Fear,” is that Marvel Studios is looking to trade rather than come to a financial arrangement. Marvel wants Galactus and the Silver Surfer back in house. Fox isn’t willing to part with them, apparently, which makes it all the more interesting.
Considering Fox has until October to get a film into production to keep the rights from reverting back to Marvel, which would be keen to reboot the franchise itself, this is an interesting proposition. Usually studios will barter with cash; one imagines that for a sum in the middle six figures Marvel would’ve extended the deadline. The fact that Marvel is looking to grab a couple characters instead tells us a lot about what they’re thinking for the long term.
The Avengers 3, more specifically, is the end game in all of this.
When it’s being said that Marvel wants a character for future pictures as a key role that particular franchise is what they’re looking at. Considering how much cash The Avengers made with a fairly simple formula, a super-powered team bands together to take on a force none of them could handle individually, the one thing Marvel has to keep doing is getting villains that are designed for their team. A singular powerful villain is like any good action film bad guy; it’s overkill for an entire team to take on someone that would be big enough for one hero alone.
It’s akin to having Hans Gruber in a film. John McClane may be badass enough to take him and his band of miscreants on but the New York cop isn’t going to take on Hans and four other legendary cinematic bad guys by himself. He’ll call his buddies Rambo and Doug Quaid to help out. Those three would be overkill against just Gruber himself, of course, which is why action films are usually about one guy taking on a villain and his henchmen. And looking down the road, Marvel is going to run into that problem with its big new shiny franchise before long.
Galactus makes sense as a hero in that franchise because after the first film a precedent was set: you can’t justify a $250 million budget before publicity and advertising with a villain that doesn’t seem impressive. An alien invasion of epic proportions brought out every major character in the Marvel universe under contract with Marvel Studios. It’s why Thanos felt like such a big deal in the post-ending scene in The Avengers; he wasn’t introduced in a lesser film and then shoehorned into Avengers 2. It was a big deal to see him as the big threat, perhaps the next to try and conquer Earth, and going further each Avengers film has to have villain with weight.
And Galactus, with his badass herald, makes sense. It’s been long enough since Fantastic Four 2 creatively, which also wasn’t a dynamo at the box office either, that Galactus as a massive Avengers villain makes sense. Deciding on an Avengers villain is like casting a Bond villain; it has to have a certain weight to it for the film to have that same epic feel. The Avengers has to have that weight because it’s such a massive undertaking; you don’t bring in Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, et al, for a weak film.
It’s why The Avengers took so long to set up and why Marvel is eyeing Galactus and his servant for their own purposes.
Tags: Daredevil, marvel studios, The Avengers