With The Avengers just days away and Iron Man 3 set to begin production next month the Marvel universe is clearly the hot topic at the moment. To begin with, the international box-office has never played a larger role in the success of Hollywood feature films and today it was announced Iron Man 3 will be a co-production with China.
Variety reports DMG Entertainment will invest in the production of the third pic in the superhero franchise, manage the Chinese co-production process and jointly produce the film in China. The film will be doing some on location shooting in China later this summer.
Money from foreign territories isn't a new idea in Hollywood and independent filmmaking, but the more global the films become, I wonder how much effect that will have on their story lines. Right now films do so much to try and appeal to so many demographics at once while not offending anyone I wonder if it can get any worse in the future. Already it seems almost every bad guy is suddenly an alien, vampire or other non-human entity, can it get any more generic in the future?
As for the status and story of Iron Man 3, little has been revealed, though Coming Soon had a chat with Marvel Studios President of Production Kevin Feige recently as he gave a few tidbits on the upcoming film along with other planned productions including Thor 2 and Captain America 2.
Feige spoke on trying to maintain individuality with each film while also including just enough for an inevitable sequel to The Avengers. As for what you can expect with the three upcoming features, "The movies have to work in and of themselves," he said. "So Iron Man and Thor will be more individualized and more focused just on their stories. Captain America will be a pure Steve Rogers story, but have more in common with the backdrop of Avengers."
Recently both Iron Man 3 and Captain America 2 were said to be picking up right where The Avengers leaves off, but clearly they will be going their own ways, as will Thor. Feige adds, "Tony Stark can go home to Malibu and deal with his own circle of friends and his own sort of military industrial complex that the world of Stark Industries inhabits. Thor, as you will see, initially leaves the planet and goes back to Asgard and has to deal with the Nine Realms, and to reconnect with Jane Foster [Natalie Portman]. Cap is the only one that can't go home again. His home is gone, and how he deals with the modern era will be the crux of that movie."
Right now Iron Man 3 is set to hit theaters on May 3, 2013, Thor 2 arrives on November 15, 2013 and Captain America 2 will hit theaters on April 4, 2014. There is also a fourth Marvel feature scheduled for May 16, 2014, but the focus isn't so clear.
Recently Feige told Bleeding Cool they are closer than they've ever been to having the Ant-Man feature with director Edgar Wright. "I'll just say it's closer than it's ever been in its long maybe eight year history, and I usually e-mail Edgar every two or three days and over those eight years it's got further away and closer... we are now closer than we've ever been. So I hope it will come together shortly."
Also, there has been talk of a new Hulk movie after people were so enamored with Mark Ruffalo's character at the recent premiere of The Avengers, but in an interview with Huffington Post, Feige once again is answering questions and when asked if they would be willing to give another Hulk movie a shot he's quick to say, "Well, no. This was the other shot. Right? I mean, this was the third appearance of Hulk and everything that we had and were going for, we put in to Hulk's appearance in Avengers.... Where we go next, we'll see. But we'll be very careful about it and deliberate -- as we were in how we wanted to bring him back in Avengers."
Ruffalo himself weighed in on the possibility with The Playlist saying, "There's been sort of toying around with the idea but no one from Marvel or Universal has mentioned it to me. It's probably premature. They're about to make another Captain America and another Thor and another Iron Man. I'm sure a third Hulk is predominately undermined at the moment. But I’d entertain that, definitely for the right story."
So that fourth film could be anything, for now we just don't know.