With a pair of recent successful X-Men movies under its belt – and the highly anticipated X-Men: Apocalypse on the way – Fox is nowhere close to letting go of Marvel’s most valuable mutants. Now comes word that X-Men fans might be on the verge of seeing some prime-time mutant action, with a live-action X-Men-themed television show said to be in development.
The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Fox is in preliminary discussions to adapt the X-Men for a live-action television series. Sources close to the talks tell THR that the series currently has 24 producers Evan Katz and Manny Coto involved. Writing the series would be Star Trek alums Patrick McKay and JD Payne.
It’s not a done deal, though: the Fox network’s studio counterpart, 20th Century Fox, owns the rights to the film franchise, so there would be some negotiations needed there.
There’s also the matter of Marvel.
It’s no secret that Marvel really wants to bring Spider-Man, the X-Men, and the Fantastic Four home to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Sony might be willing to do some deals regarding Spider-Man, but Fox’s continual successes with the X-Men make it unlikely that Wolverine, et al. will be popping up in an Avengers movie.
Turnabout being fair play and all that, Marvel isn’t going to make it easy for Fox to capitalize on the X-Men. Marvel hasn’t been creating too many new mutant characters in its comics, preferring instead to go with the mutant-like Inhumans. Word has it that Marvel won’t sign off on any new toy licensing deals for either the Fantastic Four or the X-Men, making it that much harder for Fox to capitalize on the properties aside from movies.
Of course, Marvel is just the biggest obstacle standing in the way of an X-Men series; they’re not the only one. There would also be the difficulties of realizing big-budget superpowers on a television series scale. That would probably mean that Fox’s small screen X-Men wouldn’t necessarily be the flashy ones you’ve seen on the big screen.
Wolverine would be pretty easy to pull off, but between character fatigue and Hugh Jackman’s price tag, we’d probably be more likely to see X-23. For many of the other non-Wolverine, non-Mystique, and non-Magneto X-Men, there would be the question of just how easy it would be to realize their powers on the small screen.
Ice powers? Maybe. Time-slowing powers? Less likely. Super speed? Hey, Flash is doing it. But, then again, Flash is doing it.
What about energy blasts? Weather control? Telekinesis? All possible, but it’s necessary to remember that these will be for the small screen, so on a much smaller scale. Pretty much anything you recognize as the X-Men right now would have to be toned down quite a bit for television. Consider: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. spun out of Avengers. That’s probably the sort of step-down in scale we could expect.
Lest you get too excited, let’s remember that this wouldn’t be the first time that Fox tried to bring the X-Men to the small screen.
That atrocity aside, Fox is charging full steam ahead with the X-Men property. With X-Men: Days of Future Past having performed quite well at the box office, Fox is stepping on the accelerator, announcing recently the new casting choices for X-Men: Apocalypse‘s Storm, Cyclops, and Jean Grey. There is also a Deadpool movie in the works, with fan favorite Ryan Reynolds set to take on the titular role, as well as an as yet unnamed Wolverine movie, in which Hugh Jackman is likely to return. Oh, and Gambit, too.