Marvel Studios Loses 'Spider-Man' After Disney-Sony Profit-Sharing Dispute

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige will not produce any other Spider-Man movies after Disney and Sony hit an impasse in their discussions about co-financing future projects.

The partnership ends after Feige and Marvel Studios, a division of The Walt Disney Company, relaunched Spider-Man as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). There, he made five films, including Avengers: Endgame, the highest-grossing film of all-time, according to CNBC, and Spider-Man: Far From Home, Sony Pictures' highest-grossing film of all-time.

Spider-Man
The scene of the "Spider-Man: Far From Home" premiere on June 26. "Spider-Man: Far From Home" was Sony's highest grossing film to date. Getty/Kevin Winter

Under the old agreement, Disney received a small percentage of the profits from standalone Spider-Man movies that Feige also produced so the company could use the character in other Marvel movies. But according to a Tuesday Deadline report, Disney wanted to change the agreement so as to split the profits evenly, while Sony wanted to keep the current arrangement.

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Unable to come to an agreement, Sony apparently decided that the combined creative team of director Jon Watts—who helmed Spider-Man: Homecoming and the sequel, Far From Home—actor Tom Holland and producer Amy Pascal will be enough to keep the Spider-Man franchise relevant for future projects, even without Feige's involvement.

From a business standpoint, Deadline pointed out, it seems understandable why Sony apparently won't consider giving up half of the iconic Spider-Man franchise to Marvel, a wealthy company that actually already owns the merchandising on Spider-Man.

President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige at the San Diego Comic-Con International 2019 Marvel Studios Panel in Hall H on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California.
President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige at the San Diego Comic-Con International 2019 Marvel Studios Panel in Hall H on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Entertainment journalist Jeremy Conrad tweeted that Deadline "might have jumped the gun on #SpiderMan news. Lots of sources both publicly and privately are saying it could be saved."

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However, Deadline updated their report to say that "Sony insiders counter that Rothman did offer compromises but Disney declined."

Sony Pictures and #SaveSpiderMan trended on Twitter on Tuesday, as users drew conclusions about the power dynamics between the mega-companies. Several expressed disappointment with Sony for not brokering a deal.

"Yikes, who let sony do that knowing they won't have a decent spider-man 3 without being the mcu... #savespiderman," user @starkdnvrss wrote.

But indeed, many users voiced a particular fondness for actor Tom Holland, whose character was introduced in the 2016 blockbuster Captain America: Civil War, the film that set up the two record breaking Avengers films, according to reports.

The Hollywood Reporter questioned Marvel's ability to create a narrative that doesn't feature the character who, in the very last Marvel movie released, was the face of the MCU superheroes, upon hearing the news of an impasse between Disney-Sony. Writer Graeme McMillan pointed out that, while they could just not mention him and hope for understanding from the audience, it is a "risky move."

Marvel Studios Loses 'Spider-Man' After Disney-Sony Profit-Sharing Dispute | Culture