We live in an era of Superhero centric Hollywood and we should be thankful for that as our dreams keep coming true with every new Superhero movie we get to see. But to make a good movie, directors have to pitch a good enough script to the studios to back it up and give a green light. But, there have been many instances where our favorite Marvel movies got canceled for astonishing reasons. Here is a list.
Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 4
While Spider-Man 3 is considered to be a disappointment, it was still the most successful Spider-Man movie in terms of money, and seeing the success moneywise, Raimi was ready to come back for one more. But the studio and Raimi did not like the direction he was trying to take the franchise, so Raimi backed out, and Sony greenlit the reboot script of The Amazing Spider-Man behind his back.
X-Men Origins: Magneto
After Wolverine and Deadpool, two big guns that Fox has really invested in are Magneto and Professor X. When the original trilogy was done with, Fox was starting a string of Origins movies starting with Wolverine. After that, they were trying for a Magneto movie where they would have brought back Ian McKellan and de-age him for a story about his younger days tracking down the Nazis responsible for the murder of his parents in the concentration camps. But the digitally altered McKellan’s entire runtime would have been really costly to make, which is why it got canceled and the ideas were carried forward to X-Men: First Class.
The Sinister Six
In 2014, Sony had complete faith in The Amazing Spider-Man franchise and had decided that TAS2 will not only be followed by a 3rd movie but Venom and Sinister Six will get a movie as well. They had even hired Drew Goddard for writing the script but the movie got cancelled as soon as a deal between Marvel and Sony got finalised and Spider-Man went to the MCU.
Wes Craven’s Doctor Strange
In the 90s when Marvel was unsuccessful on the big screen with their previous attempts like Captain America, Howard The Duck and The Punisher, they licenced the Doctor Strange character to straight-to-video empire Full Moon Entertainment, who lose the license while working on the feature. Later when the rights reverted back to Marvel, Wes Craven began approaching it as Director. But, he failed to materialize a good script for the movie and later moved on to other projects.
In the late 80s, Larry Cohen began working on a She-Hulk Movie and a potential TV series which will loosely connect to the successful Incredible Hulk show. But, at that point, people and the execs lost their interest in Superhero genre thinking that it might be dying and it is time to focus on other projects. And the movie got canceled.
The Amazing Spider-Man 3
When the deal with Marvel was finalized and Spider-Man was set to appear in Civil War, there was no point of having a parallel Spider-Man Universe being continued and thus all the work that was done by Amazing Spidey 2 to set up the third one went in vain and plans for the 3rd one were scrapped. They had all kinds of things planned for TAS3 and had even plotted for Mary Jane to come in the third one.
Stuart Gordon’s Iron Man
Yet another unfinished project of Marvel from the 90s was Iron Man which actually would have been Unique at that time. Stuart Gordon was approached to direct the movie who had a unique take to offer: Tony Stark is a reclusive billionaire and retired superhero, living like Howard Hughes until a threat emerges that is so great it forces him to don the armor once more. Well, it was a solid idea and might have been Marvel’s first Theatrical success but the Studios had no money to put it into motion and the project was canceled.
The Silver Surfer
When Fantastic Four: The Rise of Silver Surfer was being produced, the studios were trying to set up a Silver Surfer origin in order to be followed with a solo movie. But when Galactus was turned into a giant cloud, not only did Fantastic Four 3 died, Silver Surfer’s future was also dead. At that time, a script for Silver Surfer was written by J. Michael Straczynski, but after FF 2’s failure, they focussed on rebooting the franchise.
James Cameron’s Spider-Man
Cameron’s take on Spider-Man is now a thing of legend. He initially went to approach X-Men but instead was offered a prospect to tackle Spidey. He wrote a screenplay that centered on a teenage Peter Parker with a few concepts, like organic webbing, which actually made into the future films, and other things like some adult humor and all in all a darker script. But, Marvel and Caroloco Pictures thought that it was a bridge too far and Cameron eventually left.
Fantastic Four 2 (2017)
In 2015, Fox had a slate for its upcoming Superhero movies which included a Fantastic Four sequel to the movie which was coming out in 2017 after 2015’s reboot. But after Josh Trank’s horrible reboot came out and the studios lost more than a $100 Million on it, the plans for the sequel were scrapped.
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