If you haven’t noticed from the sheer enormity of superhero coverage as of late, we currently live in a film environment that is flooded with comic book content. The “superhero movie” genre is more popular than it’s ever been before, and as long as these movies keep making piles of money (they will), don’t expect the trend to die down any time soon. While Marvel is currently getting much of the attention with its extremely prolific and interconnected series of films, 20th Century Fox revitalized the X-Men series last year with the wonderful X-Men: First Class. A sequel is in the works for that film, and production is gearing up to begin on a follow-up to the Wolverine spin-off, The Wolverine. The studio owns a number of other Marvel characters, giving them the potential to make some truly exciting comic book movies.
Steve got the chance to sit down with Fox CEO Tom Rothman at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. While they talked about a number of Fox properties throughout the course of the conversation (look for more updates here on the site soon), we wanted to bring you a tidbit of information that Rothman dropped about a feature film adaptation of a really fun Marvel property: The New Mutants. Hit the jump to see what he had to say.
For those unaware, the New Mutants comics were a spin-off of the X-Men series. The characters first appeared in 1982 in Marvel Graphic Novel #4 and featured a young team of Professor Charles Xavier’s students.
Unlike the singular X-Men, the New Mutants team was made up of ethnic diversity and included: Karma, a 19-year-old Vietnamese girl who could mentally possess other people’s bodies, Cannonball, a Kentuckian with the ability to rocket through the air, Wolfsbane, a Scot who transforms into a wolf-like creature, Psyche, a Cheyenne with the power to create three-dimensional illusions, and Sunspot, a Brazilian with superhuman strength that was powered by sunlight. The series was rebooted in 2003, but the new version of New Mutants was more closely tied to the X-Men and the Xavier Institute.
Given the commercial and critical success of the young-skewing superhero flicks First Class and Chronicle, it seems like a no-brainer for Fox to pull the trigger on a New Mutants movie. Steve brought the prospect up to Rothman, who gave a cryptic yet telling response:
Steve: I know you guys have like The New Mutants and a lot of characters in the X-Men universe. Obviously you guys are moving forward on an X-Men sequel, you’re moving forward on Wolverine, do you envision New Mutants or some of these other characters as franchises that the door can be open to? It does seem to me that the superhero genre is bigger than it’s ever been, and you guys have some of the crown jewels.
Rothman: (smiles) Yes.
When can fans expect an announcement on some of these other properties? Before Comic-Con, after Comic-Con, at Comic-Con?
Rothman: In the summer.
Are you talking to filmmakers right now?
Rothman: Let me just say this. All I have to say is, I agree with you in your assessment of the potential in a lot of these characters.
Steve said that Rothman was all-smiles when he brought up New Mutants and all but confirmed that a New Mutants movie will be announced soon. Really, the decision makes perfect sense. Marvel is making a killing with their individual superhero movies, but Fox owns a great deal of Marvel characters and the studio would be stupid not to turn some of them into movies.