Seriously, What The Heck Is Going On With Spider-Man?

Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War
Spider-Man/Peter Parker (Tom Holland)
Photo Credit: Film Frame
© Marvel 2016

Yesterday we reported about the Sony/Disney Spider-Man break up, which was accurate at the time of publishing. Within a couple of hours, reports came out that things weren’t quite as they seemed. And honestly? It’s not much clearer a day later.

As we reported in our previous Spider-Man article:

Deadline reports Disney wanted a 50/50 financing arrangement for future Spider-Man movies that were supposed to be co-produced. However, Sony wasn’t too pleased about such a condition. (…) Cnet recently revealed that Spider-Man: Far From Home is Sony Pictures’ “highest-grossing film of all time.” Due to such success, Sony apparently wasn’t too keen on losing money being made by future installments in the young web-slinger’s franchise.

As a result of the failed negotiations, Kevin Feige, the current president of Marvel Studios, has been cut from upcoming Spider-Man movies. Peter Parker is effectively done with having anything to do with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, unless something can be done to remedy the current mess.

The time between when the story first broke and when Sony scrambled to “clarify” what was going on was about four hours. Considering the topic was dominating Twitter trends almost immediately, I’m not surprised they rushed out a quick unofficial comment via iO9 that negotiations were “ongoing.”

I wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end of millions of upset geeks either, so I get the rushed anonymous comment to iO9. The Internet was raging, however, and we needed something more official.  This morning a more official statement by Sony has been released via Twitter:

Much of today’s news about Spider-Man has mischaracterized recent discussions about Kevin Feige’s involvement in the franchise. We are disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision not to have him continue as a lead producer of our next live action Spider-Man film. We hope this might change in the future, but understand that the many new responsibilities that Disney has given him—including all their newly added Marvel properties—do not allow time for him to work on IP they do not own. Kevin is terrific and we are grateful for his help and guidance and appreciate the path he has helped put us on, which we will continue.

It sounds like they are tossing the blame back at Disney and the statement doesn’t directly answer the burning question about whether or not Spidey will remain in the MCU. The general assumption is that if Feige isn’t involved, Spider-Man is out of it entirely. It’s a fairly safe assumption since Feige in charge of the MCU overall, so Sony’s statement does nothing to alleviate our worries on that front.

However, the phrase “we hope this might change in the future” gives us hope that we can bring the web-slinger home once more. It just depends on what goes down in their “ongoing” negotiations.

Many fans speculate that the news about Spider-Man was intentionally leaked by Disney as a bargaining tactic. Fans were immediately up in arms over the news, aiming a massive amount of ire at Sony, pressuring them to cave to Disney’s 50/50 offer. Sony’s vague response and a clear attempt at aiming the Internet’s rage back at Disney gives that theory more weight. Our anger is basically being used as a weapon in the negotiations between the two media giants. Neither of them wants to be the one to be blamed for the mess.

Until we get a solid answer about the future of Spider-Man, we can soothe our frustration with memes.

Hopefully, these companies come to an agreement soon and we won’t have to go through a fourth reboot in two decades. Hopefully, they can come to an amicable agreement and keep Spidey with the other Marvel heroes (where he belongs).

Author: Angel Wilson

Angel is the admin of The Geekiary and a geek culture commentator. They earned a BA in Film & Digital Media from UC Santa Cruz. They have contributed to various podcasts and webcasts including An Englishman in San Diego, Free to Be Radio, and Genre TV for All. They identify as queer.

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