The last 12 hours have been both a confusing and ecstatic time for Marvel movie fans. With official confirmation of Spider-Man’s impending Marvel Cinematic Universe debut, Marvel Comics’ most popular and iconic character will finally web-swing his way towards an on-screen team-up with The Avengers. With that good news set, one begins to wonder where that leaves Sony Pictures’ plans for the wise-cracking wall-crawler’s spinoff movie projects, notably with the villain group-focusing film, The Sinister Six. Well, according to one report, it will leave things on ice, which we can assume is a lot better than dead.
According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, the breaking news regarding Spidey’s booked ticket to the MCU has not yet vanquished Sony’s plans for a spinoff film of sorts with The Sinister Six. The paper reports that Sony will delay The Sinister Six, citing a person "involved in movie." It likely will not be able to keep its planned release date of November 2016.
Of course, "delayed" can mean a number of things. What has become relatively clear after the recent Spidey announcement is that this could be bad news for everything that star, Andrew Garfield has built with his rendition of the Spider-franchise, as we are most likely looking at a completely new version of the Spider-Man mythos…yet again. Thus, everything would have to be reestablished before we can even get to a point where a Sinister Six spinoff movie would even be feasible -- which it certainly would be after Spidey makes his first MCU appearance. Most reports (including the one from WSJ,) point to that happening in Captain America: Civil War, which would certainly be appropriate, seeing as Spider-Man plays a huge role in the political/philosophical Marvel comic book storyline, which shared that film’s subtitle.
Where does that leave The Sinister Six? That all depends on the specifics of Sony’s deal with Marvel, which is not public knowledge. It certainly represents a tremendous change of philosophy, as Sony seemed recalcitrant in its intentions to "go it alone" and create their own cinematic Spider-Man universe. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 seemed to send out a clear message that the world of Sony’s Spider-Man was about to get a whole lot bigger. Amongst more plans for TASM sequels and talks of a film focusing on the villainous Venom, the Sinister Six project was undoubtedly the culmination of those previous ambitions. Basically, it was to be Sony's Avengers.
However, with all the turmoil over the hacking scandal and the recent leadership shakeup over at Sony Pictures with chairperson, Amy Pascal stepping down, it could be conjectured that this deal with Marvel Studios was probably made as a measure to put aside the old thinking, pick themselves up and get things rolling in a different direction. That is not to say that we couldn’t be looking at a Sinister Six movie sometime down the road. However, given how meticulously the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been built, it would take a LONG time to get to a point where a spinoff/team-up film would even be conceivable by MCU standards.
The Sinister Six’s 2016 prospects may have slipped through their felonious fingers, but solid indications have Spider-Man himself swinging his way into Captain America: Civil War when that star-spangled spectacle hits the same year on May 6, 2016.