“Daredevil” film rights returned to Marvel, comic book nerds everywhere rejoice.


For those who don’t know, Marvel sold the film rights many of its hottest properties in the late 90s to avoid bankruptcy. Sony bought Spider-Man and Ghost Rider, Fox bought X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Daredevil among others.

You may remember the Mark Steven Johnson – directed Daredevil film from 2003, notorious for its abysmal PG-13 theatrical cut, slightly redeemed by its R-rated director’s cut. I say slightly because putting Ben Affleck in spandex will probably never make an entirely watchable film.


Well, looks aren’t everything. Especially when you’re blind.

Still, Daredevil did a few things right: Collin Farrel was a decent, albeit corny Bullseye, and Michael Clarke Duncan was a fantastic choice for the crime lord Kingpin. The action was good, it had a good story at its core, and it kept Daredevil as the gritty, no mercy badass he’s famous for being (at least the director’s cut did anyway).


Great role, or greatest role?

It performed well enough to merit a spin-off film, Elektra, rated as one of the worst superhero movies of all time, but a sequel never came.

Once the reboot craze hit Hollywood, Fox planned on starting anew using Frank Miller’s classic take on the character as a new launchpad. However, they needed to make the movie by October 10th, 2012 in order to retain the film rights.

In case you haven’t noticed, there hasn’t been a second Daredevil film, and Fox isn’t confident in their ability to slap one together in a month’s time, meaning order has been restored and Marvel Studios now has a new shiny toy to play with.

This could mean a few different things: we’ll no doubt see another Daredevil movie in the not-too-distant future, but probably not until 2015 or later when Marvel’s production slate has cleared up a bit. As it stands right now, Iron Man 3 is set for a 2013 release, followups to Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger are due out in 2014, Avengers 2 is planned for a 2015 release, and between all that sequel business the studio plans to release two new franchises, Guardians of the Galaxy and the Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man. Besides all the official news, there are also rumors of a Hawkeye / Black Widow movie and a Black Panther film in the works, a character that will almost certainly appear in one of the aforementioned films.

Where does “the man without fear” fit in here?

Most likely a cameo in Avengers 2 and his own film shortly after.

The other option would be the live-action TV series Joss Whedon was recently attached to. No details have been released about it yet, but Daredevil could be a possible fit for the medium. If you’re not familiar with the character, he’s a blind lawyer by day, crime-fighting vigilante with super-senses by night. Picture Law and Order with more leather and kung-fu – TV gold. That’s a very exciting prospect, especially with Whedon at the wheel. If you’ve never watched Angel, this is kinda what Joss is all about.

Whatever they decide to do, the best part about the deal for now is that it opens up some more doors to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, the giant crossover concept that’s currently making them a ridiculous amount of money and which every other studio with a high-concept film franchise is almost surely trying to replicate.

For me at least, all the crossovers and shared continuity is what makes Marvel’s films so exciting and getting a great, prominent character like Daredevil thrown into the mix is excellent news.

Now if we can just get Fox to return their other Marvel properties…

It’s unlikely that they’ll give up X-Men, as it’s one of their biggest cash cows and even with trainwrecks like The Last Stand and First Class under the banner, but the clock’s counting down on their Fantastic Four rights.

Fingers crossed.

Now, who could possibly make a better Daredevil than Ben Affleck?



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7 thoughts on ““Daredevil” film rights returned to Marvel, comic book nerds everywhere rejoice.

  1. Nnathan says:

    In what way was First Class a trainwreck?

    • Seriously, I’d like to know how the single best movie in the entire X-Men franchise is a train wreck.

      • brien says:

        I never mentioned X2…

        But if you seriously want to know, First Class had far too many continuity errors to ever be considered a prequel to the other X-Men films, and as a reboot (a type of movie I have no love for), it failed to really improve on its predecessors.

  2. jeffrsmall says:

    Doesn’t this actually kind of suck? It was my understanding that Marvel was letting Fox know that they could keep daredevil if they turned over Galactus and Silver Surfer. I’m assuming since Fox returned Daredevil that discussions about Galactus and his herald fell through?

    I would honest MUCH rather see Whedon do something with two huge Galactic A-Listers than a second string batman clone.

    • brien says:

      While I think Daredevil is a bit more than a Batman clone, it probably doesn’t matter all that much to Marvel.

      From what I understand, if Fox doesn’t make a new Fantastic Four film in the next few years, the rights go back to Marvel anyway. And it’s looking very possible that the planned FF reboot will never get off the ground.

      In the meantime, they have plenty of other intergalactic characters in their roster to use. I love Galactus, but guys like Thanos, Guardians of the Galaxy, and the Inhumans are much easier to transition to the big screen.

  3. Robert Kirker says:

    Would love Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase Three to include:

    Heroes for Hire (Luke Cage and Iron Fist)
    Dr. Strange
    Cloak and Dagger

    Culminating in a “Marvel Knights” storyline of some sort.

    • brien says:

      I’d love to see all those guys on the big screen, but right now they’re in “Phase II” of the MCU, and I think they’re trying to avoid falling into the pitfall that Fox’s X-Men movies did when they just started haphazardly throwing in new mutants.

      I could see a lot of them appearing in a Thunderbolts movie though – something I’m hoping will happen to give Black Widow and Hawkeye a fair share of the spotlight.

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