'Dark Phoenix' could transition the 'X-Men' franchise into the Disney era, but don't expect a teaser in 'Avengers: Endgame'

Fox‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’
  • Both the upcoming “Dark Phoenix” and “Avengers: Endgame” will mark a conclusion for this era of their respective franchises.
  • Fans shouldn’t expect the X-Men to be teased in “Endgame,” but once the Disney-Fox merger closes, the characters could be introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe after this year.

Both the “X-Men” franchise and the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know them will change drastically after this year.

Fox dropped a new trailer for the next instalment in its long-running “X-Men” series, “Dark Phoenix,” on Wednesday, and it teases an end (it’s less on the nose about it than the first trailer, which featured a song called “The End” by The Doors). It even reveals the death of a major character, and director Simon Kinberg told Entertainment Weekly“there are certainly other major casualties” in the movie.

READ MORE: The DC movie franchise made a comeback with ‘Aquaman,’ and its new strategy will distinguish it from the Marvel Cinematic Universe

But even without the ominous footage released so far, it was apparent that “Dark Phoenix” would be a turning point for the franchise.

Disney, which owns Marvel, bought Fox last year in an industry-shaking $US71 billion deal, and the merger is expected to close early this year. At that point, Disney will own Fox’s Marvel characters – which include the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool – and the Marvel Cinematic Universe will have access to them. “Dark Phoenix” is expected to be the final major “X-Men” movie under Fox, besides a “New Mutants” spin-off that comes to theatres in August.

Fans shouldn’t expect the X-Men to be teased in the MCU’s “Avengers: Endgame,” though.

Avengers endgame finalDisney‘Avengers: Endgame’ comes to theatres April 26.

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige told Variety in December that he hadn’t been given the greenlight to develop projects for Fox’s Marvel characters yet. That means it’s unlikely that any reference to the X-Men would have been approved for “Endgame,” which hits theatres in two months. However, he did say that it’s “looking very, very good and could happen in the first six months” of 2019.

“Endgame” also marks an end of sorts for the MCU. Feige has said that the current era of the MCU is “gearing towards a conclusion” with the movie, and Disney CEO Bob Iger has said that the MCU will “try a new franchise beyond ‘Avengers'” in the future. After “Endgame,” veteran MCU actors like Chris Evans are expected to retire from their roles.

The MCU will be in need of fresh characters once that happens, and after this year, Marvel will be free to use the X-Men in any capacity. Disney is developing MCU spin-off TV shows for its upcoming streaming service, Disney+, which could pave the way for an introduction to a new rendition.

The timing couldn’t be better for “Dark Phoenix” and “Endgame” to both mark a conclusion for this era of their respective franchises.


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Watch the new “Dark Phoenix” trailer below:

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