Rumors: Fox Developing X-Men TV Show; Sony And Marvel Could Share 'Spider-Man'

There's no mystery about the fact that superhero films have become one of the dominant forms of the movie business in the US, but the success of Marvel's universe-building approach is still resounding as other studios race to catch up. Two rumors today are directly concerned with the ways in which other companies are trying to get a piece of Marvel's success. One says that Fox is developing an X-Men TV series, while another report claims that Sony and Marvel are knocking together a way in which Spider-Man could end up in a Marvel film.

First up: X-Men. Bleeding Cool reports that Fox is making moves to develop an X-Men TV series. That's a thing which makes perfect sense, as the sprawling world of the X-Men can never be fully explored on film, and the developments in the various X-Men comic series means that there is far more raw material for stories than the films will ever get around to using. And a TV show would offer a lot more chance for character development, meaning that some of your favorite characters could seem a lot more like themselves. (Simon Kinberg seems to agree.)

There's no more detail than the claim that Fox is "deep in development" on the project, so we'll give you more as we can.

Much more exciting is the Spider-Man rumor. Over at HitFix, Drew says,

While I can't get the confirmations I need to verify the story, I'm hearing that there are some very cool "Spider-Man" plans being discussed that would help Sony refocus their enormously important franchise while also opening up some connections in the onscreen Marvel movie universe that would blow fandom's minds. Will it work out? I don't know. I would love to be able to state for sure that it's happening. What seems clear from what I've heard is that Marvel wants to be able to play with all of their characters, and if they can make that work creatively and on a corporate level, they will, and that means the world gets bigger again.

To some comics fans, that will read as if Marvel is finally making a real push to make Civil War, based on the storyline that played out in comics a few years ago. As the name implies, multiple factions of heroes were pitted against one another in the story, prompted by the enaction of a superhero registry by the United States government. Having Spider-Man to play with would allow Marvel to build towards a pretty epic cinematic version of the story.

Whether Civil War is in the planning stages or not, we know that Marvel would love to have at least some control over the cinematic future of one of the company's most significant characters. And since Sony has been struggling with Spider-Man, the concept of one company making some sort of deal with the other isn't totally outlandish.

That said, there's a lot we don't know here — for starters, we don't know if this will even happen. But seeing two studios at least share a character is something we've expected to happen sooner or later. If the character in question ends up being Spider-Man, and it happens sooner than we ever expected, that'll be an interesting thing to watch.