Slider_Quinn21 wrote: ireactions wrote:
Joss Whedon killed Coulson in AVENGERS and then wrote the pilot episode of AGENTS OF SHIELD in which Coulson is resurrected. When asked why Coulson wasn't in AGE OF ULTRON, Whedon said he found it too difficult to explain to the casual audience why Coulson was alive again; most of the feature film viewers would not have watched an ABC TV series. That has, fairly or unfairly, kept Coulson out of present day Marvel films and Disney+ shows.
I don't buy that. It may have been casually true during Age of Ultron (where Phil was alive but we may not have known exactly how or why) but it certainly isn't true now. Coulson is an LMD "canonically" so I think that's all you need. You could write a line about "Stark missed me so he built me a new body based on the old Coulson" which, true or not, would be enough hand-waving for it to be both true to the show and make sense for the fans.
Coulson is a popular character. He led the first Marvel TV show, and they've literally brought him back every chance they've gotten. They know he's a capable and fun character to use. And I think if there was anything they could do to unwrite his death, they would've. But I think they want him to stay dead, and I think they want his death to matter. And Agents of SHIELD, as much as I liked it, did undermine a key moment in the Avengers. And I think, especially since I was only able to come up with four examples of key deaths, that matters too much to Marvel and/or Feige.
There were also some legal/logistical/licensing issues that kept Coulson out of the present day films. Feige lost control of the Agent Coulson character after AGE OF ULTRON, leaving him with absolutely no say over Coulson's present day stories in Coulson's weekly TV show.
As Slider_Quinn21 pointed out a few years ago, the Marvel TV and film divisions were originally connected through Joss Whedon working on AVENGERS and AGE OF ULTRON alongside AGENTS OF SHIELD. And also Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely working on WINTER SOLDIER and INFINITY WAR and ENDGAME alongside AGENT CARTER.
Marvel film, TV, publishing and merchandising were operated by Ike Perlmutter with Feige running the film division and Jeph Loeb running the TV division with a small number of staff from publishing working with Perlmutter as consultants. Feige was blocked from the TV division and increasingly micromanaged in the film division by Perlmutter.
During this period, AGENTS OF SHIELD was outside Feige's purview; his only influence on AGENTS OF SHIELD was that Feige was overseeing Joss Whedon's work on AGE OF ULTRON and Whedon had a vested interest in having AGE OF ULTRON tie into the TV show that Whedon had developed and for which he'd written the pilot, meaning whatever Feige had Whedon do on the second Avengers film would determine what could or couldn't happen with Coulson on television.
Then Whedon quit with AGE OF ULTRON and Feige's at-most indirect ability to direct the Coulson character was gone. Coulson was now in Jeph Loeb's hands as part of the TV division and if Feige wanted to use him, it would be something Perlmutter could use to further interfere with the films and Feige was enduring outrageous interference from Perlmutter.
Leading up to CIVIL WAR, Feige and Downey Jr. were interested in giving Tony Stark a larger role (and salary) when the original plan had been for Downey Jr. to only work on CIVIL WAR for two weeks of shooting and voice recording and have most of Tony's scenes with him wearing the armour and Tony's face only in insert shots. Perlmutter proceeded to fire Downey Jr. off CIVIL WAR for daring to seek a larger role. Feige was furious and threatened to resign from Marvel.
Disney stepped in, giving Feige total control of the film division. Perlmutter owned too much Disney stock to be fired entirely, so he was demoted to running only Marvel TV and publishing. Perlmutter and Jeph Loeb oversaw the ABC, Hulu and Netflix shows with no further communication between them and Feige's film division.
Feige was free from Perlmutter -- unless he wanted to use Agent Coulson as Coulson's present day adventures remained in the AGENTS OF SHIELD television show. Feige couldn't control it, had no input into it, would have had to defer to Perlmutter to use Coulson in the present day or cede ground back to a former supervisor he couldn't work with any longer -- so he only used Coulson in CAPTAIN MARVEL (set in the past).
This allowed Feige's friend and business partner Clark Gregg to continue to have a clear path on AGENTS OF SHIELD under Perlmutter and Loeb. As Feige said in interviews, he tried to focus on the projects where he had control (the movies) as opposed to the projects where he didn't (ABC, Hulu and Netflix).
In 2020, Feige regained full control of Agent Phil Coulson; Feige is now in charge of Marvel films, television and comic book publishing. Disney removed Perlmutter and Loeb from any creative control of Marvel properties. Loeb has been dismissed. Perlmutter remains the largest single shareholder at Disney but has no authority over film, TV or publishing. https://variety.com/2019/biz/news/kevin … 203377802/
No public statement gave any reasoning, but by 2020, all the Marvel TV division projects had concluded or been cancelled and had never sustained long-term success. AGENTS OF SHIELD was a critical hit with Season 2 onward, but it was a ratings sleeper, surviving only due to internal licensing advantages. AGENT CARTER was a ratings crash in Season 1, and a budget-slashed Season 2 saw its numbers fall so badly that it was unrenewable for Season 3.
DAREDEVIL, JESSICA JONES and LUKE CAGE received acclaim but were highly criticized for Netflix bloat and constant creative reshuffling with showrunners coming and going due to poor professional relationships. Despite the final seasons of the post-DEFENDERS shows getting great reviews, the audience had fallen badly and all the Netflix shows were cancelled.
INHUMANS was a disaster, a low budget TV project that premiered in IMAX theatres, conflating the big budget Marvel feature film brand image with bargain basement TV. IMAX declared that Marvel TV had damaged the IMAX brand with INHUMANS.
In contrast, Feige is the hero of the highly successful Marvel film division, and Disney wanted a clean slate for Feige to bring the same success to Disney+ with Marvel shows. The comic books are viewed as Feige's research and development branch.
Will Coulson return in future films or on Disney+?
Clark Gregg says there are currently no plans, but it would have been impossible to make any plans until near the end of 2020, and any plans being made now -- if any -- would likely manifest towards the end of the Phase 4 movies and shows or some time in Phase 5.
I don't expect Agent Coulson to return for the immediate future simply because AGENTS OF SHIELD lasted an incredible seven years and Feige might want to let the character rest from regular appearances for awhile. Coulson first appeared in 2008 and was on TV from 2013 to 2020. He has had a lot of airtime.
I'm a big fan of Coulson. It's possible that he'll be back. It's also possible that his time has come and gone and if that's the case, 12 years was amazing and nothing can diminish that achievement.