Could Back Room Dealings Give ‘Daredevil’ a New Director and Marvel the Rights to Galactus and the Silver Surfer?

Ever since Marvel Comics created its own movie studio and started making its own movies, much ado has been made about the other studios holding rights to some of their characters. How long does Sony have the rights to Spider-Man? Will Marvel ever get to make an X-Men movie, seeing as they’re already tied up elsewhere? While those properties seem to be staying in their current homes, at least for the foreseeable future, there’s one character out there who actually is close to making a jump back home to the House of Ideas: Daredevil.

Recently, Fox was trying to get together a reboot of the character’s adventures on film under the watch of director David Slade, but a few weeks ago he dropped out of the project. That’s bad news for Fox, because if they don’t manage to find a new director and get a Daredevil movie in front of cameras before October 10, then film rights for the character will revert back to Marvel, and all of their efforts to reboot the property with a more gritty, Frank Miller-inspired take on the material will be in vain.

In the same report that announced Slade’s departure from the new Daredevil film also came the news that Fox had lined up a director for another of its Marvel-born properties, The Fantastic Four. Chronicle helmer Josh Trank is now in control of rebooting that franchise. But a report that came out of Variety today could have consequences for both his upcoming Fantastic Four film as well as the future of Daredevil.

According to the trade, Fox is now looking at Joe Carnahan (The Grey) to direct the Daredevil script that they’ve been sitting on. They feel like he’s the man for the job, but whether or not he’ll be able to begin work on the film come October 10 is in question. Enter Marvel. Reportedly, they’re looking to make a deal with Fox that will give them an extension on their Daredevil development, if Fox will in turn give them back the rights to the characters of Galactus and the Silver Surfer, which they used for their first Fantastic Four sequel, Rise of the Silver Surfer.

With Marvel launching a big space opera in Guardians of the Galaxy and seemingly having the goings-on in that film leading up to a big confrontation with the intergalactic war monger Thanos in Avengers 2, one would imagine that a planet-eating monster like Galactus and a character who can wield the Power Cosmic like the Silver Surfer would be welcome additions to the story they’re telling. Of course, this would rob Josh Trank of one of the Fantastic Four’s main villains, should he be able to spearhead a successful reboot of those characters over at Fox.

What do you comic fans think about these possibilities? Certainly there’s an overriding desire in the geek community for Marvel to regain the rights to all of their characters sooner rather than later, but you have to admit that a darker Daredevil film directed by Joe Carnahan sounds pretty promising, no matter which studio’s name gets flashed before the title card. And though this might put a monkey wrench in Trank’s plans for Fantastic Four, he should be able to get a trilogy just out of creating a decent version of Dr. Doom for those characters to fight, shouldn’t he? And many might be wishing that Trank gets his hands tied with those characters anyway, because the sooner another FF movies fails over at Fox the sooner the characters could be brought back under the control of the company that created them.

It’s not often that two big studios manage to play nice in situations like this, but in this case we could be looking at a deal that’s too beneficial for everyone involved not to happen. The decision to accept or decline is reportedly resting with Fox, with official talks expected to take place later this week. If everything goes as planned, we should get the go-ahead to start making Thanos vs. the Silver Surfer fan art soon.

Weaned on the genre films of the 80s. Reared by the independent movement of the 90s. Earned a BA for writing stuff in the 00s. Reviews current releases at

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