After the back-to-back success of Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home, Marvel and Sony Pictures were practically printing money thanks to the groundbreaking deal that allowed the two studios to share Tom Holland as the new webslinger. Things couldn’t be better — and then the “dispute” happened.
During what should’ve been a celebratory time, Marvel and Sony couldn’t reach an agreement on the profit shares for a third Spider-Man film, and just like that, Spidey was out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. No more cavorting with The Avengers, and there was going to be some explaining to do about how Peter Parker got his AI-powered suit if Sony isn’t allowed to use the name “Tony Stark.”
Fortunately, after intense fan pressure and a drunken phone call from Holland, the studios reached an agreement, and the five week nightmare was over. For now. Lost in the excitement is the fact that Marvel and Sony only have a deal in place for two films: A sequel to Far From Home, and an undisclosed team-up in the MCU. That’s it. Once those are wrapped, another Spidey custody battle could easily break out.
The good news is that Marvel CEO Alan Horn and Sony CEO Tom Rothman recently sat down for an episode of Close Up with The Hollywood Reporter, and both studio heads seemed very optimistic about not repeating the Spider-Man squabble.
“The fanbase, which is important to all of us, seemed to really respond to what Tom [Rothman] and his folks had done before with our people, and they like it,” Disney’s Horn said. “They like the fact that the MCU and Kevin Feige were involved and we heard feedback out there that suggested joining forces once again was probably really a good idea.”
When Sony’s Rothman was asked if the deal would continue after the next two films he responded, “I hope so.”
“I think this was a classic win, win, win,” he added. “I think it was a win for Sony, I think it was a win for Disney, and I think it was a win for the fans.”
Could things change once Holland leaves the role, and there’s a natural break for Sony to start over with its own separate Spider-verse that’s built off the success of the Venom franchise? Maybe! But that’s a long ways off. For now, Marvel and Sony clearly realize it’s a no-brainer to keep Spidey swinging between studios.