As Vince wrote on Tuesday, Sony Pictures announced this week its plans to remain in the Spider-Man business for a long, long time, with the current Andrew Garfield Amazing series expected to release it third film in 2016 and a fourth in 2018 after the actor turns 35. After that, Sony would presumably once again reboot the franchise – perhaps as The Spectacular Spider-Man – and find a new Peter Parker, Mary Jane Watson and whoever else to milk the cash cow once again.
Sony has made billions off of the Spider-Man franchise to date, so it makes sense that it would have no intention of allowing Marvel Studios and Disney to ever take control of it. But Mark Hughes at Forbes took a page from my favorite underrated Marvel series yesterday and asked an interesting question: “What if?”
After Sony releases their fourth Amazing Spider-Man film in 2018, then I think Marvel-Disney will enter negotiations with Sony over the continued development of Spider-Man films. I believe one of two things will happen: Either Disney will offer a flat $3-4 billion plus points on future Spidey films, in exchange for Sony letting Marvel-Disney take the character and put him into their movies; or Disney will pay some smaller amount of money plus points in exchange for Sony co-developing Spider-Man films with Marvel-Disney that fit into the Marvel cinematic universe.
Hughes makes some very interesting points based on the business sense of Sony keeping the Spider-Man franchise alive after Garfield’s run, namely if it’s worth it to keep hoping that the films will turn 9- or 10-figures at the box office, or to just settle for the lump sum like some kind of elderly Powerball winner.
My question, though, for any guesses or speculation is: Will anyone still care about these characters and films five to ten years from now? I mean, we’re still two years shy of The Avengers 2 and just the rumors have already worn me out. By the time Sony reboots the Spider-Man series again, I’ll probably be living on a private island with my Kate Upton sex robots.