Iron Man 3 confirmed for 2013
Disney and Paramount reach a deal that gives the former distribution rights to The Avengers, and also confirms that Iron Man 3 is arriving in May 2013…
One of the frustrations that Disney has had to face since it bought Marvel last year is that the movie rights to many of the firm's biggest comic book properties are held by other studios. Fox, for instance, has the rights to make movies based on X-Men, Daredevil and Fantastic Four, and is churning out new films to ensure that it keeps them. Sony? It's got Spider-Man and Ghost Rider signed up, while Paramount has been making a pretty penny out of the likes of Iron Man and the incoming slate of Captain America and Thor.
Paramount was also set to distribute the Marvel epic The Avengers, being directed by Joss Whedon for release in 2012. Yet, Disney has now stepped in and done a deal with Paramount Pictures to give the Mouse House distribution rights to the movie. It's costing the firm $115m, which is a fair amount of bottom line cash for Paramount in exchange for, basically, not making and releasing a film. But that's the amount it's cost to get Disney the distribution rights to The Avengers in-house.
One further consequence of the deal is that it also gives Disney the rights to future Iron Man movies, and as a result, we now know when to expect the next one. According to the statement released, Disney is planning to release Iron Man 3 on May 3rd 2013. Robert Downey Jr is likely to be locked in to return, but it's far from clear whether director Jon Favreau can be lured back for a third time. That's all set to be sorted out in the years ahead, however
It's probably safe to assume, too, that any sequels to Captain America and Thor will now fly under the Disney banner. But don't quote us on that.
Now we can't help but wonder if Disney is set to try and get some other Marvel properties back in-house, too. We can't see Fox and Sony being anywhere near as willing sellers-back of the rights as Paramount, which has enough non-Marvel franchises - Star Trek, Jack Ryan, Transformers - to keep it busy for a few years yet...