Disney officially acquired 20th Century Fox a few weeks ago, and the time since has been filled with theorizing and doubt regarding what the future might hold. The House of Mouse recently pulled its first project from Fox's schedule, and it's been teased that dates will be changed around in order to not compete with itself on big premiere weekends. But the biggest question is what might happen to the X-Men franchise, and when the mutants might finally arrive in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
It's currently unclear when the X-Men will pop up in the larger MCU, although fans are eager to see the iconic team interact with Earth's Mightiest Heroes. While it looks like it could take years, Marvel's Kevin Feige does seem excited about the concept of bringing Professor X and company to the behemoth franchise. As he recently explained:
The specifics of what it means remains to be seen, but overall it’s wonderful and it feels like these characters have come home. It will be nice to have what every other [intellectual property] holder that I can think of has, which is access to all their IP. Imagine if Donald Duck was at another studio. Imagine if Goofy or Moana were someplace else and you didn’t have access to them even though they are yours.
While Disney's acquisition of Fox may end the X-Men franchise as we know it, Kevin Feige does make a point. Marvel's gang of mutants are beloved characters from the page, and the comics have always featured crossovers with other heroes. Now that can come to life on the big screen, as the Marvel property has the potential to join the MCU.
Kevin Feige's comments to Variety should please the hardcore Marvel fans, even if they're going to miss 20th Century Fox's X-Men franchise. The X-Men franchise may have started before shared universes became on trend, but their exclusion from the MCU still always felt strange. Hugh Jackman's long tenure as Wolverine ended before crossovers could ever occur, and Earth's Mightiest Heroes definitely could have used the X-Men's help during their major conflicts.
But now that Disney officially has access to Marvel's mutants, one has to wonder if/when they could eventually join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It feels like a great time to get a new cast of characters, as many of the OG heroes are coming to the end of their contracts with Avengers: Endgame. As such, Marvel Studios is presumably going to need to put more stock in newer characters like Black Panther, Spider-Man, and Doctor Strange. And adding in the X-Men might be a great way to keep the MCU filled out, and ripe for more epic crossover events.