Skip to story 20th Century Fox (left), Valiant Entertainment (center), Marvel Studios (right)
Early reviews are coming in for Avengers: Age of Ultron, but we don’t want to read them for fear of getting spoiled. So instead we’re going to distract ourselves with thoughts of other superhero movies that lie in wait, whether it’s Batman v Superman, Fantastic Four, or something a little bit more obscure. Here, as always, are the highlights of the last week’s superhero movie news.
SUPER IDEA: Sony Announces Five-Picture Deal with Valiant Entertainment
There’s nothing like a five-movie deal with a massive studio to tell the world that you’re serious about your shared superhero universe. Congratulations to Valiant, then, which will bring the directors of John Wick and the producers of the Fast & Furious franchise together for Bloodshot and Harbinger movies, starting in 2017. There’s also a crossover between both properties planned as the fifth movie.
Why this is super: Valiant’s comic books have been a constant highpoint in the superhero world since the publisher’s relaunch in 2012, so the prospect of seeing them translated into movies was an enticing one even before the Fast & Furious/John Wick mash-up of talent got involved. File under: High hopes.
SUPER IDEA: Doom Awaits
Also stirring some optimistic thoughts is the latest trailer for Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four reboot, released last weekend.
Why this is super: The more we see of Fantastic Four, the better we feel about it. Sure, it may be visually dark, but this trailer makes it clear that the heart of the core characters is present (with the arguable exception of Doctor Doom, who never seems to be able to make it through to movies intact, sadly). We’d be a little more excited were they all a little older, but maybe that just means we’re old farts.
SUPER IDEA: LA Clipper DeAndre Jordan Is Batman (Almost)
Never mind the official teaser—although, you did all see the official teaser when it was released last Friday, right?—the best chance fans had to see the outfits of the next cinematic Wonder Woman or Batman was, oddly enough, in an online video about Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan visiting the Batman Exhibit at Warner Bros. Studios in LA. No, really; you even get to see the new movie Batmobile, as well.
Why this is super: Hey, look! Wonder Woman’s costume has, like, colors and her magic lasso and stuff! Also, Jordan’s excitement at seeing the Batmobile is really, amazingly charming. All future movie reveals should be done this way, just showing adult fans let their inner 10-year-olds out.
SUPER IDEA: Marvel Gets Small with Ant-Man Marketing
Sure, the trailers haven’t been particularly impressive so far, but miniature billboards have started appearing in Australia advertising the movie. It’s not the first time Marvel has shrunk down its marketing for the movie; there was also a miniature version of the flick’s first teaser at the start of the year.
Why this is super: Not only is it a cute, memorable idea, the tiny billboards also manage to suggest a sense of playfulness and fun that the trailers haven’t yet. Something like this makes the idea of seeing Ant-Men seem like something other than a grind. Maybe one day, there’ll be something from the movie itself that manages the same thing.
UNCERTAIN IDEA: No, Spider-Man Really Isn’t in Avengers: Age of Ultron (Or Is He?)
This video appeared on the Internet earlier in the week, purporting to be the post-credits sequence from Avengers: Age of Ultron:
Is it real? Joss Whedon definitely says no, as you can see from this footage from a press junket below:
Certainly, common sense would seem to agree with him; as far as we know, the next cinematic Spider-Man hasn’t been cast yet, and you’d have to hope that the VFX folk at Marvel could come up with a more convincing Avengers Tower in the background than appears in that video. And yet… it wouldn’t be entirely out of the realm of possibility for everyone to be fibbing in order to try and preserve a surprise when the movie is released May 1. (There’s certainly no Spidey tag on the press screenings, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be one on the finished movie. The shawarma gag from the first Avengers was added post-premiere.)
Why this isn’t clear: While we’re fans of the idea that Spidey could show up when fans least expect him, we’d hope that it’s with a scene better than the one in this video. Also, if Age of Ultron is going to be introducing future heroes ahead of time, can we all agree that it would be better to see Black Panther?