- After Disney and Sony could not reach a co-financing agreement on Spider-Man films, the character will be leaving the MCU.
- This means Sony gets to make Spider-Man films exclusively, the character cannot cross into the MCU, which will be tricky as Tom Holland is still booked for two more films.
- Fans are upset, with some calling a Sony boycott over the matter.
Marvel and Sony Fail to Reach Agreement
As Uncle Ben said, “With great power comes great responsibility,” and that has proven to be the case for the execs dealing with the tricky Spider-Man agreement between Disney and Sony. The powers that lie between the two companies failed to reach an agreement on co-financing the Spider-Man franchise, effectively kicking the beloved character out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
According to a Deadline report published Tuesday, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige will no longer have a hand in producing Spider-Man films. Sony has owned the film rights to the web-slinger since 1999, allowing them to make Toby McGuire’s trilogy and the Andrew Garfield reboot. They have lent film use to Marvel since 2015. Their deal allowed Marvel to use Spider-Man in other MCU films while taking merchandise revenue and 5% of first-dollar gross. Sony fully financed the films and took the rest of the profits.
Disney, however, was looking to strike a new deal. They offered to co-finance the film at a 50/50 split, meaning that both companies would spend and make equal parts on the films. Sony said no, and took Spider-Man with them.
Sony tweeted a statement about the news, saying they were “disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision.”
Kevin is terrific and we are grateful for his help and guidance and appreciate the path he has helped put us on, which we will continue. (3/3)— Sony Pictures (@SonyPictures) August 21, 2019
According to several reports, experts are not surprised the companies found themselves at a stalemate. Jeff Bock, a senior box office analyst at Exhibitor Relations told CNBC that Sony was “playing a little hardball right now.”
“And they have every right to do so, considering the deal Disney offered is a joke,” Bock added. “Maybe if we were discussing the rights for ‘Howard the Duck,’ 50/50 would be in play, but not for the web-slinger.”
The Future of Spider-Man
As for the future of Spider-Man, right now, it seems unclear. Sony now has the sole power to make films about the friendly neighborhood superhero, which is a massive win for them. They arguably need the franchise more than Disney, and Spider-Man: Far From Home recently became their highest-grossing film of all time.
Sony, however, is presented with one massive challenge. Spider-Man can no longer cross over into the MCU, which will be tricky, considering the Tom Holland era of the character is incredibly cemented in that world.
Holland is reportedly signed on for two more Spider-Man films, but most of the plots in his standalones are grounded in characters like Tony Stark, whom he is seen as the heir-apparent to after Avengers: Endgame. His last film, Far From Home, carries a lot of weight in the MCU, including an explanation of “the blip” and the fallout from Endgame. It also ended with massive cliffhangers pertaining to Mysterio and MCU-staple Nick Fury.
Fans React to News
Since this puts Spider-Man’s story in such an—ahem— sticky situation, many fans are not happy. #BoycottSony, #SaveSpidey, and #SpidermanFarFromtheMCU all trended on Twitter with fans expressing their frustrations over the situation.
In addition to being mad at Sony for claiming sole rights to the hero, some were equally upset with Disney for not negotiating their deal.
And fans are not alone in using social media in hopes of changing Spidey’s future. Jeremy Renner, who plays Hawkeye in the Avengers films, took to Instagram as well.
“We want Spider-Man back to @therealstanlee and @marvel please,” the actor said.
Ryan Reynolds also acknowledged the situation on Twitter, responding to a user who asked if a Deadpool and Spider-Man movie could be in the works.
See what others are saying: (Deadline) (CNBC) (The Ringer)
“Emancipation” Producer Apologizes, Hopes He Did Not “Distract” From Film’s Message By Bringing Photo of Enslaved Man to Premiere
He said he plans on donating his collection of historical images to appropriate institutions.
McFarland Brings “Whipped Pete” Photo to Premiere
“Emancipation” producer Joey McFarland apologized on Sunday after facing backlash for bringing the original 1863 photo of the enslaved person the film is based on to the premiere.
“I wholeheartedly apologize to everyone I have offended by bringing a photograph of Peter to the Emancipation premiere,” he wrote in a statement on Instagram. “My intent was to honor this remarkable man and to remind the general public that his image not only brought about change in 1863 but still resonates and promotes change today.”
The photo, frequently dubbed “Whipped Peter,” is one of the most famous images depicting the gruesome realities of slavery in America. He is facing away from the camera, revealing the severe scarring all across his back. According to the Library of Congress, the formerly enslaved man was actually named Gordon. Will Smith plays him in “Emancipation,” which follows his escape from slavery.
While walking the red carpet of the film’s premiere, McFarland carried the photo with him.
“I have the photo. This is the original photograph from 1863,” he told Variety. “I wanted it to be here tonight. I wanted a piece of Peter to be here tonight.”
While lamenting the fact that so many historical artifacts have not been properly preserved, McFarland told Variety that he “took it upon [him]self to curate and build a collection for future generations.” He said his collection will be donated after he dies.
His remarks were met with swift criticism from those who thought it was inappropriate for McFarland to not just own the picture, but to bring it to a Hollywood event.
“Why do you own the photograph? Why did you bring it to a movie premiere if the intent is to preserve it respectfully?” The Black List founder Franklin Leonard tweeted.
“I don’t know, man, but bringing ‘a piece of Peter’ that you ‘own’ to the red carpet of a movie that’s personally enriching you so that you can collect more slave memorabilia that you’ll keep until your death,” he added along with a giphy of Kenan Thompson saying “yikes.”
McFarland Acknowledges Historical Photos “Belong to the World”
Others argued that the photo should belong to Gordon’s family.
“Being in possession of a symbol that reflects our trauma is exactly what our oppressor would do. He is his ancestor’s child,” another person added.
In his apology, McFarland said that he hopes his actions “don’t distract from the film’s message, Peter’s story and just how much impact he had on the world.”
Throughout the development of “Emancipation,” McFarland said he discovered many photos of overlooked individuals with important historical stories. He said he always planned to donate them and believes “there is no better time to begin that process than now.”
“These photographs, which existed before me, will be around long after I am gone; they belong to the world,” he wrote.
See what others are saying: (Variety) (The Hollywood Reporter) (The Daily Beast)
Joe Rogan Holds Spot As Top Podcaster on Spotify in 2022
Earlier this year, some threatened to boycott the platform over Rogan and the health misinformation he shared on his show.
For the third year in a row, “The Joe Rogan Experience” was the number one podcast on Spotify, the company revealed in its yearly “Wrapped” feature on Wednesday.
“The Joe Rogan Experience” became exclusive to Spotify in 2020 after the host signed a lucrative deal with the audio streaming platform. “Call Her Daddy” by Alex Cooper, also a Spotify exclusive, followed Rogan on the charts. “Anything Goes With Emma Chamberlain,” which will become exclusive to the service next year, came in third.
Rogan’s podcast has made several headlines over the last year as the podcaster faced backlash from medical professionals and major musicians for touting COVID-19 misinformation. Niel Young asked to have his music removed from Spotify in protest of the company’s deal with Rogan, and several other artists soon followed.
Just a few days later, several clips resurfaced of Rogan using a racial slur. Many called to boycott Spotify for platforming Rogan, but his popularity did not seem to fade by the year’s end.
There are over four million podcasts available to stream on Spotify and over the last year, the platform has expanded into new markets.
It also has started launching podcasts from several high-profile figures, including Kim Kardashian’s “The System,” and Meghan Markle’s “Archetypes.” Both of those debuted mid-year and did not crack the annual top-five list.
Comedian Gives David Beckham Ultimatum: Exit Role at Qatar World Cup Or £10K in Donations Gets Shredded
“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded,” Joe Lycett said in a video.
Pressure on Beckham
Comedian Joe Lycett posted a video on Sunday saying he would shred £10,000 if soccer star David Beckham does not pull out of his deal to be an ambassador for the Qatar World Cup.
Ahead of the event, which kicks off on Nov. 20, many have been raising concerns about human rights abuses in Qatar. The country criminalizes homosexuality, and it can be punishable by death.
Beckham’s deal to represent the country was reportedly worth £10 million, and many are frustrated that the athlete took such a big check from a country with known anti-LGBTQ laws. In his video, Lycett noted that Beckham has been openly supportive of his gay fans and was the first premiere footballer to do a photoshoot with a gay magazine.
In an attempt to get Beckham to bow out of his role, Lycett, who is pansexual, offered an ultimatum.
“If you end your relationship with Qatar, I’ll donate this £10,000 of my own money, that’s a grand for every million you’re reportedly getting, to charities that support queer people in football,” he stated. “However, if you do not, at midday next Sunday, I will throw this money into a shredder.”
“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded.”
Beckham’s Reputation “Shredded”
Lycett said he would livestream the money shredding if that’s what the situation comes to. If Beckham does not back out of the World Cup, Lycett noted he will be forced to “commit what might be a crime,” as destroying legal tender is against the law in the U.K.
“Although even then, I reckon I’ll get off more lightly than I would if I got caught whacking off a lad in Doha,” Lycett quipped.
Lycett then linked to a website titled https://benderslikebeckham.com/, which includes a written version of his message, as well as a countdown to when he will either shred the cash or send it to a non-profit.
Lycett is not the only U.K star to raise concerns about issues in Qatar. Singer Dua Lipa shut down speculation that she would be performing at the World Cup over the weekend by saying she has no intentions to visit the country until “it has fulfilled all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host” the event.
Other stars, however, including BTS’s Jung Kook, are slated to take the stage.