Did You Hear? is a weekly examination of headlines in the entertainment industry and a take on what they could mean for the future of the industry and (often), the little geeky bubble that we occupy.
Sony Splits Spidey from Disney
The news that broke the geeksphere this week concerns the split between Sony and Disney when it comes to the subject matter of Spider-Man and exactly where he belongs and who deserves to be making what amount of money for what amount of work … or complete and utter lack of work as the case may be.
Before anyone gets too bent out of shape about it, I do want to repeat the talking point that Disney owns 26% of the Hollywood filmmaking industry right now. Sony remains one of few studios of a certain standing that can work independently of Disney and at the same time present a credible box office threat.
If this bothers you and you went to see Venom last year then you need to take a long look at yourself friends. Venom proved that Sony can make Spider-Man and Spider-Man adjacent films with no need for the larger construct of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Variety sums up the current impasse as follows:
If a deal cannot be reached, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige will not produce future Spider-Man films, effectively removing Tom Holland’s Spider-Man from the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
One source said that a deal might still be reached between Disney and Sony but there are no talks currently going on. Disney is believed to have expressed concerns that Feige was spread too thin due to other Marvel projects plus original projects for Disney Plus.
Details of the disagreement between Sony and Disney vary from report to report on the details, but everyone seems to agree that Disney asked for a 50/50 profit share on any-and-all movies with any-and-all Spider-Man characters whether or not they were involved AND that they demanded use of characters beyond Peter Parker despite this not being agreed to in the original contract.
The biggest takeaway is that inter-studio negotiations are hard. Jumping to the conclusion that Sony is in the wrong is perhaps a little more self-reflective than anything else. Sony has proven they don’t need Disney and in light of these difficult negotiations I would estimate it’s unlikely for Sony to ever let the license on Spider-Man revert to Disney.
If you liked seeing Spider-Man as baby Iron-Man, there’s a good chance you won’t be seeing anymore of that. BUT D23 is this weekend, so there’s always a chance a whole bunch of money will change hands and Spidey will be back with the Avengers by Monday.
The Matrix 4 is Officially in the Works
On Tuesday Variety Exclusively broke the news that not only was a fourth installment in the Matrix trilogy happening, but both Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss would be reprising their respective roles as Neo and Trinity …
… despite both of their characters having died during the events of The Matrix 3.
Lana Wachowshi will also return for writing and directing duties, but she will return solo this time around, rather than pairing with her sister as we classically think of the team behind The Matrix.
We could not be more excited to be re-entering ‘The Matrix’ with Lana. Lana is a true visionary — a singular and original creative filmmaker — and we are thrilled that she is writing, directing and producing this new chapter in ‘The Matrix’ universe.
said Warner Bros Picture Group Chairman Toby Emmerich.
This project has apparently been in development for several years with the goal of returning The Matrix universe. In the wake of popular genre fiction being on the rise and the current Keanussance we are enjoying I will admit I’m not shocked at this announcement. I even love that it was made on the anniversary of the original movie when special screenings were being held, however …
… didn’t Neo and Trinity DIE!?
James Bond 25 Details Revealed
On Tuesday the Official James Bond Twitter dropped a monumental Tweet that included a lot of details about the next – and final – installment in the Daniel Craig James Bond franchise of films:
Daniel Craig returns as James Bond, 007 in… NO TIME TO DIE. Out in the UK on 3 April 2020 and 8 April 2020 in the US. #Bond25 #NoTimeToDie https://t.co/qxYEnMhk2s
Not only is the title confirmed: No Time to Die, but dueling release dates as well. No Time to Die will premier in the United Kingdom on April 3rd, 2020 and in the United States on APril 8th, 2020. This is a shorter time gap between the two debut dates than we are used to, which, if I were to make a leap, is likely a result of the spoiler culture which sprung up via the Twitter platform … ironically the same online location this announcement was hosted on.
Per Deadline ’s coverage of the announcement:
In the upcoming movie, Bond (Daniel Craig) has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.
As a huge Jeffrey-Wright-as-Felix-Leiter stan I couldn’t be happier. This description pretty much has my ticket secured, regardless of the title! To its credit, No Time to Die feels a lot more like a classic James Bond title than perhaps any of the Craig era names.
Craig will be joined by several familiar faces from his stint on her majesty’s secret service and the movie will be adding: Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), Ana De Armas (Blade Runner 2049), and Lashana Lynch (Captain Marvel).