Netflix Chief Says Marvel TV Characters Could Cross Over to the Film World; Confirms Netflix Plan Is Based on THE AVENGERS Model

by     Posted 115 days ago

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When Marvel Studios finally executed its plan of teaming up various individual film characters into one big movie, The Avengers, it was a smashing success to the tune of $1.5 billion.  After that, the studio turned its attention to the small screen with its first self-produced TV series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  The show was met with a less-than-enthusiastic response, and while faithful viewers say it found its footing in the latter half of its freshman season, much of the show’s look-in audience had already abandoned it.

And so it’s with a certain mix of anticipation and caution that fans await Marvel’s upcoming series of Netflix shows.  The studio will kick things off with a 13-episode Daredevil series, followed by Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and Luke Cage and culminating in a 13-episode team-up season of The Defenders.  Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos recently spoke a bit about the shows, revealing that a crossover into the MCU “has been talked about” and confirming that the Netflix plan is modeled off The Avengers.  Much more after the jump.

daredevil-netflix-showSpeaking with Empire Magazine (via CBM), Sarandos confirmed that the overall plan for the Marvel Netflix shows is based on the theatrical model that Marvel employed to build to The Avengers:

“It was really based on the theatrical model of The Avengers. Could you take another group of characters, The Defenders, and go about it the same way? Normally they do the big movie and then eventually they get to the group origin story. Having 13 hours to tell each of these stories, you can go right to the origin story and the action at the same time.”

While comic book adaptations on television are nothing new, some fans of shows like Smallville and Arrow would regularly hope that those iterations of the characters could maybe get the big screen treatment with the backing of a major film studio like Warner Bros.  However, the truth is that while these shows get solid ratings for their respective networks, they’re not near strong enough to warrant putting $100 million into the same cast and creative team to make a movie.  Frankly speaking, these shows were cast for TV, not the big screen.

However, Marvel could be looking to change that up with its series of Netflix shows.  When asked whether these Marvel Netflix characters could crossover into the movies, Sarandos simply replied:

“It has definitely been talked about.”

The casting has certainly been strong on the first Marvel series, Daredevil, nabbing Vincent D’Onofrio to play Kingpin, Charlie Cox as Daredevil, and Rosario Dawson in a supporting role, and one imagines they might fit in quite well with the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  However, the fact that original showrunner/writer/director Drew Goddard left the project in the middle of pre-production is a bit disconcerting (and don’t tell me he left because of “scheduling conflicts” with Sinister Six—he had plenty of time to complete Daredevil before moving to that feature).

agents-of-shield-turn-turn-turn-3Could the same creative struggles that plagued Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. be prevalent in Marvel’s Netflix shows?  Time will tell, but speaking about Daredevil specifically, Sarandos says they’ll be going a bit darker:

“The series will not be afraid to go darker than the film did. What we love about this particular set of heroes is that they’re a little more down to Earth. Costume wise and also in that these are gritty crime stories, more in the streets than in the clouds.”

I’m hopeful that the Netflix model will be more befitting a Marvel television series than network TV, and it’s certainly an ambitious prospect to build towards a mini-Avengers on the small screen.  Next up after Daredevil is Jessica Jones, run by executive producer Melissa Rosenberg, so it will also be refreshing to have a major female presence in the comic book universe.  The major task, obviously, will be ensuring that these shows are genuinely good.

What about you, readers?  Would you like to see these Netflix characters crossover into the MCU?  Sound off in the comments below.

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  • JBug

    This has such high potential. I’m expecting great production from netflix.

    • Kevin Feige

      Same. With 13 episode seasons, they can afford to have higher quality CGI and production values, so I’m hoping it can reach the level of Game of Thrones in that department. That’s another reason why I’m excited for Agent Carter as well, since it will have a small episode count, meaning they can be much higher in quality than something like Agents of SHIELD

      • eternalozzie

        Agent Carter will be expensive because it’s a period piece … Game of Thrones is in a league of its own driving HBO right now … many people have cable just for GOT.

      • eternalozzie

        Agent Carter will be expensive because it’s a period piece … Game of Thrones is in a league of its own driving HBO right now … many people have cable just for GOT.

  • JBug

    This has such high potential. I’m expecting great production from netflix.

  • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/ Dedpool

    Nice!! I can’t wait for the Iron Fist one. Scott Adkins (XMO:Wolverine, Expendables 2, Ninja) or Christian Howard (Ken in SF: Assassin’s Fist)!!!

    • mattinacan

      can’t you pick guys that can act?

    • TOm

      How about a good actor that can learn martial arts, instead of a good martial artist who is a bad actor. I can forgive bad martial arts moves, not bad acting.

    • TOm

      How about a good actor that can learn martial arts, instead of a good martial artist who is a bad actor. I can forgive bad martial arts moves, not bad acting.

      • AnakinCorleone

        Good point. Fight scenes are choreographed and actors even refer to them as “dances”. A good actor for the non-fighting scenes makes a big difference.

        Personally, considering Marvel’s lack of diversity in its cinematic universe so far, I think Iron Fist makes the most sense to cast an Asian-American actor without it seeming “token” or “forced”. Since they’re filming these series in New York, it’s easy enough depict him as someone that grew up in Chinatown, Koreatown, or Flushing.

      • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/ Dedpool

        Normally I could forgive bad martial arts, but when the character is all about the martial arts, then it becomes an issue. I don’t actually think they’re bad actors. Not Hollywood level, but some coaching could definitely help. I just don’t want what happened to Blade, to happen to Iron Fist. Had they picked Michael Jackson White for that, who can act, and fight it probably would’ve lasted more than a season. Didn’t help that Sticky Fingaz can barely act, except portraying himself, and couldn’t make the choreography look good. And as for the whole Asian casting, I’m not against it, and you’re absolutely right it would work perfectly, but part of who Iron Fist is, is being an outsider to that world, and still being able to succeed and be the champion of K ‘ un L’un. But either way I’m just happy it’s happening.

      • Scottie Braden

        A key point of iron fist being who he is, is being an outsider of K’un L’un. So stop with all this diversity crap.

      • Random Bystander

        So he can’t be Asian and still an outsider?

      • Scottie Braden

        IMHO I don’t think he would be anywhere near as much as an outsider if he were to be Asian.

      • Random Bystander

        The series probably won’t spend as much time in K’un-Lun anyway, so if he were Asian or Asian-American he’d still have to deal with some of the outsider-ness in his day to day life, whilst still being an outsider culturally in K’un-Lun. If he were an outsider because he’s white that would seem to just be racism, but if he were Asian he would still have that as a story element but also have the other elements. He’s an outsider in his normal life, then he’s an outsider in K’un-Lun, where does he belong? Have I been discriminated against my whole life because I’m Asian or is there something wrong with me? Stuff like that. It creates a parallel that can open up some introspective questions about the character.

      • paulwt

        You PC people are fucking choking the life out of this country.

      • Random Bystander

        I could care less about being PC, diversity is good for story, at least in this case.

      • paulwt

        How would it not be token or forced? It’s a white character whose whiteness is an element of his character (unlike Fury).

      • paulwt

        How would it not be token or forced? It’s a white character whose whiteness is an element of his character (unlike Fury).

      • kw

        So, you’d rather a guy that can’t fight play a martial artist so he can deliver a couple lines better? ….ok. There is nothing wrong with Scott Adkins’ acting, he can easily pull this off. I still like the Ray Park as Danny Rand idea, but he’s getting up there.

  • CaptainCarl

    This could be such a huge win for Netflix if done properly, and it could set the stage for a new approach to TV and movie tie-ins. It makes so much sense to delve deep into the characters, their origins, their individuals stories, etc. on TV, and then bring everyone together for a movie that focuses on one big event. So much potential, let’s hope they knock this one out of the park.

    • Kevin Feige

      TV is slowly but surely taking over, and becoming just as high in quality as movies, if not better in terms of writing and story/character development. Now movie stars are making their way to television, which means the acting talent pool for shows is only getting higher.

    • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

      The only concern I can see studios having is the exclusivity aspect of Netflix (until the series are released on disc-format/Netflix’s exclusivity term on streaming lapses). Viewers either have to get a Netflix subscription or wait until the series hits home video, which could conflict (though unlikely) with the integration into the movie universe.

      • Kyle Chandler

        That’s actually a pretty interesting point, though I don’t think any of these series will be as closely integrated as agents of shield was in terms of timing. maybe some of the overall arcs might trickle down (maybe luke cage has to deal with a defective rogue ultron, or something).

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        I think, most likely, all of the series will wrap up just in time (with about a year to spare) to include them in Avengers 3 for the final Thanos showdown. They might not be front and center, but I could see Cage, Iron Fist, Daredevil, and Jones bashing their way through an army of aliens while the Avengers make their way to Thanos. But yeah, we might see Avengers 2 or Cap 3 ramifications in one or two of these.

      • CaptainCarl

        True, although I can see the movies developed in a way that doesn’t require having seen the TV shows. I can see studios being more willing to consider this route if the TV shows are an added value to the movies, and not necessarily a requirement.

  • CaptainCarl

    This could be such a huge win for Netflix if done properly, and it could set the stage for a new approach to TV and movie tie-ins. It makes so much sense to delve deep into the characters, their origins, their individuals stories, etc. on TV, and then bring everyone together for a movie that focuses on one big event. So much potential, let’s hope they knock this one out of the park.

  • Colonel_Neville_Wraithchild

    vincent Donofrio. as Kingpin. in a DD movie. I’m already sold.

    • ….

      It’s a series…..

      • Colonel_Neville_Wraithchild

        Do you know what the word crossover means? The article says there is the possibility for the series,characters to Crossover from TV to theaters… Read before replying

  • Colonel_Neville_Wraithchild

    vincent Donofrio. as Kingpin. in a DD movie. I’m already sold.

  • mattinacan

    i am a million times more excited for this mini netflix avengers plan than whatever DC is cooking up with justice league.

  • mattinacan

    i am a million times more excited for this mini netflix avengers plan than whatever DC is cooking up with justice league.

  • Kevin Feige

    If these turn out as awesome as they sound, I hope their Phase 2 of Netflix shows are Punisher, Blade, Ghost Rider, and Moon Knight

    • Kyle Chandler

      oh crap. that would be awesome. Moon Knight FTW.

      Never been a huge punisher or ghost rider fan, though. How about we trade one of those for she-hulk?

    • Kyle Chandler

      oh crap. that would be awesome. Moon Knight FTW.

      Never been a huge punisher or ghost rider fan, though. How about we trade one of those for she-hulk?

      • Kevin Feige

        I just chose these 4 since they have a similar dark & gritty vibe. Maybe trade out Ghost Rider since he might be a bit too CGI heavy. If they never get around to giving Black Widow & Hawkeye a solo movie, I’d love it if they got a Netflix TV series instead. It’d be a great way to flesh out their characters

      • Kevin Feige

        I just chose these 4 since they have a similar dark & gritty vibe. Maybe trade out Ghost Rider since he might be a bit too CGI heavy. If they never get around to giving Black Widow & Hawkeye a solo movie, I’d love it if they got a Netflix TV series instead. It’d be a great way to flesh out their characters

      • http://www.twitter.com/dsilinski Darren

        Watching this might convince you to want a Punisher series:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWpK0wsnitc

      • Kyle Chandler

        Oh yeah, I really liked that video when I saw it a while back. Of course, most of the stuff in that they would never allow into a marvel movie. Though if they could make a full length film out of the short, I would watch the pants off it, I’m sure.

        At this point we’ve already had a few Punisher movies and a few Ghost Rider movies (mediocre as they may be), so I just want to see new and different characters for the most part. Though, like anything else, if they can make an awesome story behind those characters, I’m all for it.

    • Vulcan

      That would, and they can use the Marvel Knights label again for them.

      • Kevin Feige

        I don’t think they’d leave the Marvel name in there, and would probably have to find a different team name. Heroes for Hire (even though traditionally used for Luke Cage & Iron Fist) would work well

      • Vulcan

        For the Punisher and Ghost Rider movies, instead of Marvel Studios, it says “Marvel Knights” which is the brand Marvel uses for the darker movies. I was saying that they can put the Marvel Knights brand on those series to show that it won’t be kid friendly.

      • Kevin Feige

        I get what you’re saying, but I don’t think it was ever officially used for those darker movies, but it was definitely used in the comics. They’d want to keep it under the Marvel Studios brand, so just naming this Phase 2 groups of shows (along with the team-up culmination miniseries) as Heroes for Hire, like they did with the Defenders series, would make the most sense.

      • Vulcan

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marvel_Studios go down to the section titled Marvel Knights.

      • Kevin Feige

        Yeah I’ve seen that, but that’s just Wikipedia labeling it as such. I don’t think it was ever officially labeled as that by Marvel, but I have been wrong before

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        Marvel does call them that. They released Punisher: War Zone under the production company “Marvel Knights” and they released a series of Motion Comics under that label as well. Marvel embraces that title.

  • Kevin Feige

    If these turn out as awesome as they sound, I hope their Phase 2 of Netflix shows are Punisher, Blade, Ghost Rider, and Moon Knight

  • https://twitter.com/waypastparadise autopilot

    Why are you so adamant that Goddard didn’t leave for scheduling? With Sinister Six coming out in 2 years, that timeline checks out as far as when Sony would want him working on it.

    • Anthony Michael

      seriously. While I think there could be more smoke to the fire, the author of this article comes off as such a rube with little real-world understanding of the filmmaking process with that little tantrum of his.

    • Lee Harvey Cobblepot

      Devin at Badassdigest claims it’s because of “creative differences” between Goddard and Jeph Loeb who is, apparently, a twat.
      Now, I don’t know this first hand, and of course it’s rumor/gossip at best. But that’s part of the fun – speculating on rumor and gossip, which is why I’m repeating it.

      • paulwt

        Feige or whoever is in control of this situation really needs to can Loeb and get someone in that role who is as good with the TV side quality control as Feige is with the movie side. If the awful Loeb keeps putting out mediocrity (or worse) on TV under the Marvel banner, it may not hurt the films, but it won’t help them, either.

  • Spider

    Who owns the rights to Miles Morales? Because I would love to see Donald Glover in a Spider-man series.

    • Kevin Feige

      Sony

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        Sony owns the movie rights. They could give us a Miles Morales as Spidey Netflix series, he just wouldn’t be able to transition to film.

      • Kevin Feige

        I’m not sure if Sony owns the live-action television rights to Spidey. Either way, a Miles Morales movie or show won’t happen anytime soon, unless Marvel gets the rights back

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        It’s movie exclusive. Likely the only reason Disney hasn’t done it already it because they don’t want to step on the toes/create more bad blood with Sony so that if buying back Spidey ever comes up Sony does use their live-action TV series as justification for asking for more money since it “damaged” their potential box office grosses.

      • Kevin Feige

        I guess, or more likely that there is a clause in the contract that states that Marvel cannot make a live-action incarnation of Spidey anywhere, and only have the rights to comics, merchandising, games, and cartoons

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        Nah, that’s not how rights are handled. They’re signed according to medium (Movies/TV/Streaming). When Marvel was in a financial bind, it exclusively sold the movie rights. That’s it. That’s all people really saw value in back in the 90s. Hence why all the cartoons by Marvel are still owned by Marvel. They still own all their TV rights.

        Edit: However, an LA Times article from 1999 suggests maybe Marvel did include live-action TV rights as part of the deal. So maybe Marvel can’t use him at all.

      • Kyle Chandler

        Seems like everything with Spiderman is pretty locked down with Sony, but I still think that amazing spiderman would have been 100% better with donald glover. Would have been so so perfect.

      • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

        What do you mean it’s locked down with Sony? Disney has a cartoon TV series. Sony only has movie rights.

      • Spider

        Do they? They bought the rights to Peter Parker/ Spider-Man. Miles wasn’t created till a few years ago for the Ultimate Line. I think Marvel would own the rights.

      • Kevin Feige

        He’s still Spider-man though

      • Spider

        I’m not sure that’s how Sony’s contract works, especially when it comes to a TV series. I think Marvel might have the rights, they just wouldn’t be able to connect it to the MCU.

      • WhoIsTheDoctor

        Yeah i think that Marvel can actually create a Spider-Man TV Series. Sony lost the rights around 7 years ago now… So technically if they did make a Spidey TV Series… He could be in the MCU!

      • WhoIsTheDoctor

        Yeah i think that Marvel can actually create a Spider-Man TV Series. Sony lost the rights around 7 years ago now… So technically if they did make a Spidey TV Series… He could be in the MCU!

      • Anthony Michael

        you sure missed your calling as a lawyer.

    • Kevin Feige

      Sony

    • Huh?

      Donald Glover is like 20 years too old for the role. I mean…kid’s barely a high school student

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  • One of Nine

    I’m super excited about Daredevil, Netflix has a golden opportunity and I think they will hit a home run.

  • eternalozzie

    Daredevil is the only Netflix series that will even be interesting out of all of these … they specifically picked these B-class heroes so there won’t be need for many special effects … just like when Battlestar Galactica did the cop out “cylons look human now” plot to keep FX costs down. Netflix or should i call it nerdflex will draw the nerd audience but they already have a subscription. If Daredevil fails to attract new subscribers you can kiss the other Marvel shows goodbye.

    • Anthony Michael

      That ‘cylons look human now’ thing sure didn’t workout for Battlestar Galactica… wait.

    • the king of comedy

      I agree he`s the more interesting out of all these characters, they should be using The Punisher too, that would be more interesting than Luke Cage and Iron Fist.

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  • theseeker7

    what I’m still waiting to hear about (unless I missed it somewhere) is that are these planned to go just one series per year? Meaning it’ll be like around 2019 sometime that we’d see the Defenders run?

  • Markt1257

    I wish they get the guys from the raid redemption to do the fight scenes for iron fist and daredevil. Asian fight scenes are so far ahead of America. The man from nowhere, raid, raid 2, and all toni jaa films.

  • Markt1257

    But winter soldier was pretty tight when it comes to fight scenes.

    • The_Dude

      I saw the Winter Soldier a week after the raid 2, and I was almost bored to tears with the hand-to-hand fight scenes. It was like going from eating a nice steak to eating McDonald’s.

      Believe it or not, a rookie cop from Indonesian is more hardcore than Captain fucking America.

      • Lee Harvey Cobblepot

        Of course, The Raid 2 being better should actually not take away from the things that The Winter Soldier does right. I’ve also seen both recently, and while I totally agree that the action in TR2 is better, TWS is still a great action movie.

  • Merlin235

    Can’t wait for Daredevil to air. I’ll be binge watching that one for sure.

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  • Mezmero

    I hope it’s good overall I’m looking forward to Luke Cage being brought to life and I’m guessing we will see him before Black Panther which I hope will change by the end of AOU.

  • Mezmero

    I hope it’s good overall I’m looking forward to Luke Cage being brought to life and I’m guessing we will see him before Black Panther which I hope will change by the end of AOU.

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  • TheMuppetManiac

    Ryan Kwanten would be great as Iron Fist. Amy Acker for Jessica Jones? I heard a rumor Idris Elba had a meeting about Luke Cage, but I don’t think he can do it because he’s already Heimdall.

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