Discussions of crossovers between movies based on Marvel Comics have largely centered around the Avengers-focused films coming out of Marvel Studios, however, the tide is starting to change and that may soon no longer be the case. Rumors have been emanating for a while about the possibility of 20th Century Fox's X-Men and Fantastic Four film properties colliding, and now one longtime X-Men alum, Shawn Ashmore, is speaking out about how he wants the separate franchises to come together.
In an interview with ComicBook.com Ashmore expressed a clear desire to, as recent rumors suggest, unite the continuities of the X-Men franchise, and the new one which will be established with the upcoming reboot of The Fantastic Four later this summer. For Ashmore, who has played Bobby Drake, a.k.a. Iceman in the X-Men films from the start, the upcoming new take on Fantastic Four represents several great possibilities; notably opening the door for a possible canonical merge with the long-established X-Men films. As Ashmore said,
There once seemed to be a great deal of resistance to this idea, notably from producer/screenwriter, Simon Kinberg, who last year stated quite unambiguously that the X-Men and Fantastic Four "live in discreet universes," but Shawn Ashmore is definitely not alone in supporting this idea, and there has been evidence to suggest that there are ideas being cooked up over at 20th Century Fox and that a merger could happen at some point. It makes all kinds of sense, as having the X-Men and Fantastic Four together provides a seemingly awesome opportunity to merge the mythos of two similarly-structured super-powered teams.
Yet, with that opportunity, comes some serious storytelling obstacles. While the cinematic X-Men storylines have primarily been set against the backdrop theme of a world full of "normal" people who are scared of the powerful emerging minority that are the mutants, the Fantastic Four has classically been more of an everyday hero tale about how a freakish accident endowed four very different people with super powers and the public embraced them as heroes. Thus, we can see why people like Simon Kinberg may have had initial reservations about the idea, as while there are several similarities between these titles, these are extremely different stories in theme and tone.
While the continuity-connected comic books have the convenience of ignoring these key aspects, films are a different animal. This is also something that Shawn Ashmore was able to discern when emphasizing on his desire for an X-Men/Fantastic Four crossover. As Ashmore noted, talking about his excitement for the upcoming Josh Trank film,
For now, fans are still shocked by the depth that The Fantastic Four trailer seemed to display. They may be coming to terms with the fact that this reboot just might not suck. Whether or not it will provide fertile grounds for an X-Men crossover remains to be seen after it hits theaters on August 7th.
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