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New Spider-Man movies to be shared between Sony and Marvel

The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Story by Jack Foley

THE Spider-Man franchise is to be shared between Sony Pictures and Marvel (aka The Walt Disney Company).

A new deal was announced on Tuesday (February 10, 2015) that means the web-slinging superhero could now appear in Marvel releases such as The Avengers.

Marvel has been waiting for some time to bring all of its superhero characters under the one banner of filmmaking, with Spider-Man and the X-Men the big two still at rival studios – Sony and Fox respectively.

But after the perceived under-performance of Sony’s last Spider-man venture, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which proved to be the lowest grossing of any of the distributor’s five Spider-Man films with $709m globally, the decision was made to strike a deal in which both companies should see a large chunk of profit.

However, the move could mean an end to Andrew Garfield’s reign as Peter Parker/Spider-Man as the British actor may be deemed surplus to requirements as Marvel looks to make the character more of its own – although this remains unconfirmed.

Superhero pundits and box office watchdogs are now predicting that Spider-Man’s first outing in a Marvel tentpole could be 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, especially as the deal allows enough time for that to happen and taking into account that the character already appears in the comic book version of the story.

Marvel will then co-produce the next solo Spider-Man outing, financed by Sony Pictures, which will be released in 2017.

The deal will see Kevin Feige, the Marvel boss who has overseen 10 consecutive box office blockbusters, including Avengers Assemble and Guardians of the Galaxy, involved in all future creative decisions concerning Spider-Man and working alongside Amy Pascal, the Sony executive who recently stood down following last year’s highly publicised cyber-attack.

Commenting on the deal, Feige said in a statement: “I am thrilled to team with my friends at Sony Pictures along with Amy Pascal to produce the next Spider-Man movie.

“Amy has been deeply involved in the realisation on film of one of the world’s most beloved characters. Marvel’s involvement will hopefully deliver the creative continuity and authenticity that fans demand from the MCU [Marvel Cinematic Universe].

“I am equally excited for the opportunity to have Spider-Man appear in the MCU, something which both we at Marvel, and fans alike, have been looking forward to for years.”

And Sony chairman Michael Lynton added: “This is the right decision for the franchise, for our business, for Marvel, and for the fans.”

Next story: Andrew Garfield set to star in Mel Gibson’s Hacksaw Ridge