Mutants are coming to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That has been a certainty ever since Disney bought 20th Century Fox — finally securing Marvel Studios the rights to the X-Men. But following the additions of a Jon Watts-directed Fantastic Four movie and a third R-rated Deadpool film to the MCU’s slate, the crossover is starting to look less like a distant reality.
Marvel Studios has revealed very little about its plans to introduce mutants into its cinematic universe. Studio head Kevin Feige didn't give fans much to chew on in a recent interview, but recent news and leaks provide plenty of fodder for educated guesses. Let's dissect.
What happened? — When asked by Collider about Marvel’s X-Men plans, Feige responded in his typically cryptic way:
“It has been heavily discussed, as you might imagine. And we have a good feeling of where it’s going and when it’s going, but that all remains to be seen.”
In other words, Marvel fans are probably going to have to keep waiting before they’re going to get any more concrete X-Men news from Feige himself. That hasn’t stopped some Marvel actors from expressing their excitement over the merger.
Ryan Reynolds reacted to Feige’s Deadpool 3 comments earlier this week in predictably witty fashion, and now it’s Stefan Kapičić’s turn. The actor, who played Colossus in the first two Deadpool films, shared his excitement over Feige’s comments on Twitter:
What does it mean? Marvel has yet to confirm whether all of the characters in the previous Deadpool films will be coming with Reynolds’ Wade Wilson to the MCU. There’s the possibility that Kapičić won’t actually reprise his role as Colossus in Deadpool 3 — especially if Feige and co. want to try out their own take on the X-Men character. That’d certainly be disappointing, given the hilarious dynamic that Kapičić’s Colossus and Reynolds’ Deadpool developed across those films.
Much of the mystery connects back to that central question — how will Marvel introduce mutants? In a universe where superheroes and superpowers have openly existed for so long, Feige and the rest of the Marvel creative team will need to tweak mutant mythology somewhat to fit into the MCU.
Marvel-ous Mutants — Online theories about mutants in the MCU are nothing new. However, recent leaks and reports suggest Marvel may use WandaVision and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness to bring the mutants into the world.
Marvel Studios has confirmed WandaVision will lead directly into Multiverse of Madness, and both will deal with alternate realities and, possibly, the temporary shattering of the multiverse. Notably, Spider-Man: Homecoming 3 will also deal with multiple universes thanks to its Spider-Verse-inspired storyline. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange will appear in that film, but it’s less clear if Spider-Man 3 will deal with mutants in any tangible way. To be fair, it already has quite a few characters to balance as is.
Either way, it is almost a certainty at this point that Wanda’s actions in WandaVision and Multiverse of Madness will play a significant role in the MCU moving forward. This writer is even of the (admittedly far-fetched) belief that it’ll be Wanda who either brings the mutants into the MCU from another universe, or creates mutants herself. The latter possibility would make for a fun, inverted take of the character’s iconic “No More Mutants” moment from the House of M comics.
The possibility of Wanda inadvertently creating mutants or activating mutant genes in people all over the MCU is certainly there — especially if the High Evolutionary really is in WandaVision and is using Scarlet Witch’s powers to experiment on humans.
The Inverse Analysis — Marvel fans are going to have a much better idea of Feige’s mutant plans when all the WandaVision episodes are released. Until then, it’s in keeping with Marvel Studios’ decades-long strategy to keep its plans as close to its chest as possible.