Don't Expect To See The X-Men In The Fantastic Four Reboot

Everyone wants a piece of that sweet interconnected universe pie. Marvel Studios has been building theirs since 2008, Sony is getting ready to experiment with Venom and Sinister Six for their Amazing Spider-Man series, and Fox holds both the rights to the X-Men as well as Fantastic Four. Next year brings The Fantastic Four to theaters, and many expect that the film will eventually lead the heroes towards a meet up with the X-Men in a big superhero goulash. It turns out you might have to wait, however, because you're not going to get that sort of overlap in next year's movie.

In an interview with Screencrush, series producer and screenwriter Simon Kinberg puts the kibosh on the idea of an immediate crossover on the grounds of continuity.

"None of the X-Men movies have acknowledged the notion of a sort of superhero team--the Fantastic Four--and the Fantastic Four acquire powers, so for them to live in a world where mutants are prevalent is kind of complicated, because you’re like, 'Oh, you’re just a mutant. What’s so fantastic about you?' No, they live in discrete universes."

It does make sense, since X-Men has worked to create a solid big screen mythology since the 2000 movie, and is by far the longest-running cinematic comic movie continuity thus far. Over the course of seven films with a series timeline that begins in the mid-19th century and stretches into the future, surely Professor Xavier would have mentioned something about four costumed crimefighters with colorful powers bouncing around New York City.

Of course, these are movies based on comic books. There's always a way to fudge reality and the X-Men and the Fantastic Four have co-existed on the pages of Marvel Comics for decades. The upcoming X-Men: Days Of Future Past involves time travel and a possible re-writing of history, which could very well allow the next X-film, X-Men: Apocalypse, to also start the world continuity anew. After all, we expect the film to draw heavily on the Age Of Apocalypse crossover storyline from the comics, which involved many different parallel existences. There's no shortage of ways these two bands of heroes can meet.

Kinberg's comment speaks more to the challenges of developing the Fantastic Four in a world with mutants, very much like 2015's The Fantastic Four is emerging in a world where there are not only multiple superhero franchises, but also three disastrous prior Fantastic Four films. It almost feels backdoor pilot-y, the notion that Fox will be presenting, essentially, The Fantastic Four, In The Tradition Of X-Men!. As this universe-sharing is going to continue, producers like Kinberg have to be rankled by the suggestion that their movie can't stand alone without the help of another bigger brand name. The characters could, and probably will meet somewhere down the line if The Fantastic Four is a hit next year, but it looks like Reed Richards and company will be working alone for now. The Josh Trank-directed film will hit theaters June 19, 2015, and its sequel is already scheduled for July 14, 2017.