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Sony Blew a Chance to Own the Entire Marvel Cinematic Universe

Sony Blew a Chance to Own the Entire Marvel Cinematic Universe

Some time within the next two years, assuming that the Disney and Fox deal goes forward, the cinematic rights for almost all of the Marvel superheroes will finally be under the same roof for the first time in decades. But it could have happened a lot sooner, if not for an extremely shortsighted decision by Sony. Back in 1998, Sony was offered the chance of a lifetime to chart out a course for all of Marvel’s movies, and the studio passed on it.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Marvel’s offer came when Sony was pursuing the rights to make the first Spider-Man movie. During negotiations, Marvel put forth a proposal that Sony could have the movie rights for almost every hero, including future MCU breakout characters like Iron Man, Black Panther, and the Guardians of the Galaxy. Marvel’s asking price was $25 million, but Sony balked under the misguided belief that casual fans would only care about Spider-Man. Therefore, the studio only paid $10 million to acquire the Spider-Man rights.

That’s a decision that came back to haunt Sony when Marvel started making their own movies a decade ago. Because the MCU constantly struck box office gold, Sony has been attempting to launch a shared universe of Spider-Man related characters. That’s still true even after Sony made a deal with Marvel to lend out Spider-Man for at least a few MCU films. The upcoming Venom movie with Tom Hardy in the lead falls outside of that MCU deal, but it remains to be seen if Sony’s corner of the Marvel Universe can compete with its larger counterpart.

Do you think that Sony could have made a Marvel Cinematic Universe twenty years ago? Sound off in the comment section below!

Images: Marvel/Sony

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