Here comes World War Hulk! Rumors are swirling that Disney could acquire The Incredible Hulk film rights. This could mean that Marvel Studios will finally be able to tackle a solo movie for Mark Ruffalo’s mean, green superhero, and it’s reportedly going to cost Disney a gargantuan $10.7 billion.
The MCU has only had one solo movie for the Hulk, which was way back in 2008, with Edward Norton in the titular role. Since then, Mark Ruffalo has taken over as Bruce Banner/Hulk and has appeared in various other Marvel movies.
The Current State of the Hulk in the MCU
Hulk hasn’t had a solo outing in years. With rumors of a World War Hulk film floating around and recent developments in the Disney-Hulu-Comcast negotiations, it looks like the future is bright for Hulk fans.
It’s been reported that Disney may be selling off its 67% stake in streaming service Hulu, which could have major implications for the studio’s long-awaited Hulk movie. For those who need a quick refresher, the Hulk has had a bit of a complicated history on the big screen.
Marvel sold the movie rights of the character to Universal Pictures in 2003, long before the MCU was even a twinkle in Kevin Feige’s eye. That means that while Marvel has been able to use the Hulk in their team-up movies, like The Avengers and Thor: Ragnarok, they haven’t made a standalone Hulk movie since 2008’s The Incredible Hulk.
But now, according to a report from The Wrap, there’s a chance that Disney may be able to regain the rights to the character in a potential sale of its Hulu stake. Analyst Jason Bazinet wrote that Disney could use the potential sale to secure the rights to the Hulk and another character, Namor the Sub-Mariner, who Universal currently owns.
The Future of the Hulk in the MCU
It’s unclear how much truth there is to these rumors. But if it turns out to be true, it could mean big things for Marvel’s plans for the Hulk. One popular theory is that the studio could be gearing up for a World War Hulk movie based on the popular comic book storyline of the same name.
For those unfamiliar with the comics, World War Hulk follows the Hulk as he returns to Earth after being banished to space by the Illuminati. He’s returned to seek revenge on those who sent him away, and his wrath is truly something to behold.
The storyline is one of the Hulk’s most popular arcs, and fans have been clamoring for a movie adaptation for years. Of course, there are a lot of hurdles to overcome before we get too excited about the prospect of a World War Hulk movie.
First and foremost, Disney would need to sell off its Hulu stake, valued at a whopping $10.7 billion. And even if that happens, there’s no guarantee that Universal would be willing to part with the rights to the Hulk and Namor.
But still, the idea of a Hulk movie is tantalizing, especially with Mark Ruffalo’s pitch-perfect performance as the character in the MCU. And with the recent success of shows like WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier on Disney+, it’s clear that there’s still a lot of appetite for Marvel content.
Plus, if Disney can secure the rights to the Hulk and Namor, it could mean big things for the future of the MCU. There are countless characters and storylines that Marvel has been unable to explore due to rights issues, and regaining control of the Hulk could open up a whole new world of possibilities.