During an interview with Collider, Reed assured that he would be open to working with Marvel again in the future. He was then asked about the fact that the X-Men are due to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the not-too-distant future. “Yeah, I think so, I mean it would have to be the right thing. I’m not an X-Men guy. [Quantumania screenwriter] Jeff Loveness, he’s an X-Men guy. I love the X-Men, I love watching X-Men movies. I don’t want to make an X-Men movie,” Reed said.
“That’s what’s great about Marvel because there’s this infinite… The ones that are interesting to me now are kind of the lesser,” the director continued. “I mean, Ant-Man at the time we knew Ant-Man, he was a founding member of the Avengers, but in terms of the public consciousness, he was probably a B-level, maybe a C-level character. Who knows, it depends on your point of view. I love that about him.”
Reed went on to describe Ant-Man as “almost like a subculture Marvel hero. It’s what drew me to Bring It On, like, ‘A movie about cheerleaders? That’s weird.’ And drew me to Down With Love. ‘It’s like a sort of Rock Hudson, Doris Day homage as a romantic comedy set in the ’60s?’ I’m into that. I had the same attraction to Ant-Man, it was the same kind of thing. So I like the idea. I would do a Nova movie. I love [The Man Called Nova]. That seems cool.”
Created by Marv Wolfman and John Romita Sr., Richard Rider/Nova first appeared in 1976’s The Man Called Nova #1. Nova is a member of the intergalactic police force known as the Nova Corps. The helmet he wears grants him access to the Nova Force, in turn giving him superhuman strength, speed, agility and the ability to fly, among other superpowers. Richard Rider was succeeded as Nova by Sam Alexander, who was created Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness, first appearing in 2011’s Marvel Point One #1.
While neither Richard Rider nor Sam Alexander have been introduced to the MCU as of yet, the Nova Corps itself was introduced to the franchise in writer-director James Gunn’s 2014 Marvel Studios film Guardians of the Galaxy. As of Guardians of the Galaxy, the Nova Corps is led by Irani Rael (Glen Close), who holds the rank of Nova Prime. The 2014 film also prominently features Nova Corps member Rhomann Dey (John C. Reilly).
In March 2022, news broke that Marvel Studios was officially developing a Nova project that would properly bring the cosmic superhero the MCU, with Sabir Pirzada (Moon Knight) attached as a writer. As of late, however, there have been conflicting reports regarding whether Marvel Studios’ Nova would be a feature film, a Disney+ series or a Disney+ special akin to Werewolf by Night and The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special. In October 2022, The Cosmic Circus reported that Nova would indeed be a Marvel Studios Special Presentation for Disney+.
Earlier this year, however, The Cosmic Circus’ editor-in-chief, Lizzie Hill, added an addendum to the outlet’s original report on Twitter. According to Hill, Nova is still being developed for Disney+, though it “may not be set in stone” regarding whether it’s a special or a series. Additionally, an even more recent report from The Hollywood Reporter regarding potential MCU delays describes Nova as a Disney+ series. So, while some scoopers have suggested that Nova could actually be a theatrically-released feature film, most outlets seem to agree that one way or another, the project is going to be a Disney+ exclusive.
Coincidentally, Reed is no stranger to working on a space-faring Disney+ project, having previously directed two episodes of the live-action Star Wars series The Mandalorian, including the Season 2 finale. However, seeing as how Marvel Studios has yet to officially announce anything regarding its upcoming Nova project, it’s far too early to speculate on the director’s potential involvement.
At any rate, the newly-released Quantumania marks the third MCU feature Reed has directed. In addition to kicking off Phase Five of the MCU, the film serves as a sequel to 2015’s Ant-Man and 2018’s Ant-Man and the Wasp, both of which were helmed by Reed as well. What’s more, according to Quantumania producer Stephen Broussard, he, Reed and Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige have already had early talks regarding a potential fourth Ant-Man film.
Thus far, Quantumania has been met with mixed review from critics, currently holding an approval rating of 47 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, making it the second MCU film to dip below 60 percent, after 2021’s Eternals. Despite having a hard time winning over critics, though, the Ant-Man threequel has proven to be a hit with audiences. The film’s audience score on Rotten Tomatoes currently sits at 84 percent, starkly contrasting its critical score. Additionally, Quantumania enjoyed a domestic opening weekend of over $100 million, and has grossed a total of $357.3 million worldwide at the time of writing.
As the MCU carries forward, another burning question is when the franchise will properly introduce the aforementioned X-Men following Disney’s acquisition of 21st Century Fox in 2019. Fans have already caught glimpses of mutants in Marvel Studios projects, such as Patrick Stewart reprising his role as Professor X in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (albeit in an alternate reality separate from the main MCU) and the Disney+ series Ms. Marvel strongly suggesting that the MCU’s version of Kamala Khan is a mutant. Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool and Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine are also set to join the MCU via multiversal shenanigans in Deadpool 3, which releases in late 2024 to kick off Phase Six.