Fox laid all their superhero cards on the table at Comic-Con last week, bringing the casts of X-Men: Apocalypse, Fantastic Four, Deadpool, The Wolverine, and Gambit on-stage for one massive photo op.
We’ve been hearing rumblings that the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot takes place in the same universe as the X-Men films, and this seemed like some real good evidence in that direction.
So just how likely is it we’ll see the X-Men and Fantastic Four in the same movie?
While a crossover right out of the gate (a la Batman V. Superman) is out of the question, there is the chance that we’ll see the new Fantastic gang team-up with the X-Men. Whether or not it actually happens though will depend a lot on how audiences react to the new reboot though.
As X-Men director Bryan Singer explained to Yahoo:
That would be a natural match-up because they’re both ensemble films and there is a natural mechanism by which to do it….But we have to see how the films turn out. How [X-Men Apocalypse] turns out, how Fantastic Four plays, to really understand what kind of desire and how that would really work. I think to just say ‘You’re going to do it’ is kind of a mistake. I think you have to see how the films evolve before you make that decision to completely commit to that. But there are those ideas in play.
What the heck is the “natural mechanism” that would make this possible?
On this, Singer was a little more enigmatic, stating only that:
It deals with time. That’s all I’m going to say.
And what does that mean?
I really couldn’t say for sure. The X-Men franchise has definitely played with time travel before, but it seems a little trite to be using that storytelling device again so soon.
The big issue with linking these two teams is that the world established in the X-Men films is very mutant-centric. By the end of Days of Future Past, mutants are seen destroying huge chunks of Washington D.C., and attacking President Richard Nixon. That’s not something that will be forgotten, even fifty or so years later; and I doubt that mutants’ roles in the world will grow any smaller when Apocalypse rolls around.
It would seem really weird to me if the Fantastic Four are expected to exist in that alternate history, unless the reboot explicitly takes the time to establish how these characters exist alongside a guy with total dominion over all metal, and a woman who can control the weather. While it’s totally possible that the Fantastic Four reboot could do this, from what I’ve been hearing so far, its story is meant to be standalone, and does not mention the X-Men in any capacity.
However, while I don’t know how Singer’s “time” comment plays into it, I do think the new Fantastic Four movie may offer an interesting way to lead into a team-up story. In the trailers, we’ve seen that the Fantastic Four don’t get their powers from a trip to space like in the comics. Instead, they travel to a different dimension (which many fans take to be the Negative Zone), one that seems to play a big role in whatever nefarious plot Doctor Doom is cooking up.
If Fantastic Four establishes the tech necessary to travel between dimensions, I see no reason why that mechanic couldn’t be the one to link them to the X-Men universe. So instead of existing side-by-side like the characters in the MCU do, perhaps in this crossover, they only share a world temporarily, working together before going their separate ways again.
When will we see the next installments?
Fantastic Four will hit theaters next on August 7. X-Men: Apocalypse will follow on May 27, 2016.