It was a “holy shit” kind of day when the news broke that Marvel had been acquired by Disney in a huge deal that saw two titans of the animated character business merge. One question in particular seemed to be repeated infinitely; “How much will Disney’s influence be felt in Marvel comics? …in their movies?”
Who knew it would be Marvel that started influencing Disney’s practices…
Variety is reporting that while it “isn’t a top-priority,” the mega-studio is having work done continuously on a script called Magic Kingdom that was originally written by Battlestar Galactica relauncher, Ron Moore. While a new writer may soon be reworking it, the script currently features the stable of well known Disney characters engaging in a story that involves the entire Magic Kingdom park. Aiming to be something in between The Avengers and Night at the Museum, it would be a way to up the profile on some of their central characters that have gone a generation without full-blown cinematic exposure.
How far does the ambition reach for this though? Will we end up planeswalking through the Disney multi-verse –like the Kingdom Hearts video game– with Amy Adams, Johnny Depp, and other live-action characters interacting with CGI updates of Mickey and the gang? Is it a more contained story that simply reintroduces smaller and older animated characters? Will there be any attempt to tie in films like the new Maleficent, Cinderella, Tron, Haunted Mansion, and Tomorrowland?
With so few details, it’s all speculation, but it’s not difficult to envision Disney going really big with this. I would imagine any success found by The Avengers (or even an eventual Justice League) could spark the powers at the Mouse House to get ambitious, or it could all be pushed forward simply as a way to get the theme-parks and traditional characters out there again.
This is long-range stuff, but it’s very interesting watching all of the studios watch Marvel so closely, holding their collective breath to see if huge character crossover films will be the next wave of property exploitation. Gonna be a big news day the Monday after The Avengers opens.