Recently, Universal Pictures and Legendary Pictures announced that they had a big, mysterious “event movie” planned for 2016. Many believed that the studio would attempt to get a Namor film off the ground, in order to retain the rights to the character and keep them from defaulting back to Marvel. However, if The Hollywood Reporter's Borys Kit is to be believed, they may have already lost him.
On Thursday, Kit tweeted the following, which seemed to put the Universal Namor rumors to rest:
But at least one thing is wrong: Universal does NOT have the rights to the Sub-Mariner. Marvel has them.— Borys Kit (@Borys_Kit) May 22, 2014
Kit claims that he’s done his due diligence in investigating this claim, and has a pretty good track record when it comes to news like this. His statement has now been followed up by a report from Comic Book Brain Splatter, a fan site that pieced together the various pieces of the Namor puzzle, pointing towards a recent IGN interview in which Kevin Feige himself said that the rights to the character may not be as cut-and-dry as we’ve come to believe:
“No, Namor I think is a little complicated, the way some of them are. Elektra I think we have. I think that was part of Daredevil, and that’s clean and simple. Kingpin we either have or somehow share. I’m not 100 percent clear on that one.”
Could Namor be owned by both studios? We’ve seen a similar thing happen with Quicksilver, thanks to his ties with both the X-Men and the Avengers, and are now seeing two iterations of the character on the big screen: Evan Peters in X-Men: Days of Future Past and Aaron Taylor-Johnson in next year’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Namor has similarly muddy ties to several teams in the comics, including the Defenders (which is coming to Netflix, as a Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and Luke Cage team-up miniseries) and the Fantastic Four. The character also has an intricate history with Captain America, so there’s always the possibility that we could see him sometime in future MCU films like, say, Captain America 3.
At this point, the possibilities for the character are endless, and it may be some time before we hear any concrete information. However, Marvel has been trying to re-unite the various characters and properties that were sold off to other studios over the years, so it would make sense that they would set their sights on Namor. Even if Universal does own part or all of the rights, they would likely need to get a film made soon to hold onto them. Considering that Feige’s recent comments contradict what he told us a year ago, perhaps Universal is already too late, and Namor has found a new home among Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
omg please let the Sassiest Bitch in the Sea fly in and put things back to rights. We'll have to update this infographic, too.