When rumors initially dropped about Legion and Fargo showrunner Noah Hawley's plans to develop a solo live-action movie based on Marvel character Doctor Doom, fans were excited by the prospect. Legion showcased a new way of looking at superhero adaptations, and following the release of Suicide Squad, which put the villains of the DC universe front and center, the time seemed right for Hawley's take on Doctor Doom. Unfortunately, new rumors state that plans for Fox's Doctor Doom film, along with other upcoming projects like Gambit and X-Force, may have been scrapped.
The reason for Fox's abandonment of their Marvel universe of films -- which includes characters from the X-Men and Fantastic Four franchises -- is no secret, as the upcoming acquisition of 20th Century Fox film and TV properties by Marvel's parent company, Disney, has left many previously announced projects in limbo.
The upcoming deal means that, regardless of any potential negative aspects of the sale outside of the Marvel Universe, film rights to popular comic characters sold off long ago would be back in the hands of Disney, and by extension, Marvel Studios. Recent reports predict the oft-discussed acquisition could be finalized by March, with the characters up for use by Marvel Studios within the next six months, according to executive producer Kevin Feige.
That means former Fox-owned characters could be appearing in upcoming films as early as the upcoming Black Panther sequel, which makes for the perfect opportunity to see Doctor Doom back on the big screen.
We've seen a few big budget versions appear over the years, starting with 2005's Fantastic Four and its sequel, Rise of the Silver Surfer. Victor von Doom was played by Julian McMahon in the Tim Story-directed films, though his origin and character were altered greatly from the Monarch of Latveria comic fans were expecting. 2015's Fantastic Four (Fant4stic) reboot from Matt Trank also featured a vastly different version of the character played by Toby Kebbell, which once again failed to capture the true villainy of one of Marvel's greatest characters.
Doom's development alongside the Fantastic Four in the films means that the villain has always taken a backseat to the four heroes, leaving him reduced to little more than a byproduct of their own creation. Doom's appearance as the villain in Black Panther 2, a franchise that has already received additional exploration in films like Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, would give the character room to really set his mark on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, making his homeland of Latveria a force to be reckoned with in the next wave of films. Much like Wakanda, Latveria is a technologically advanced and removed country, though Doom's dictatorship is a far cry from the royal family of Wakanda.