In 2019, Marvel was riding high at the box office with “Avengers: Endgame” setting box office records and everything Marvel Studios was releasing as a huge hit.  That same year, Disney+ launched, and due to the pandemic, audiences had a bit of a break before the first Disney+ series, “WandaVision”, arrived, followed by many more since.

However, the launch of Disney+ and the desire by executives and Wall Street to grow subscriber numbers as quickly as possible to chase Netflix, quickly lead to a flurry of shows being released, including “She-Hulk: Attorney At Law”, “Ms Marvel” and “Moon Knight”.  In 2022, Marvel released nine entries into the MCU across films and shows, resulting in audiences becoming overwhelmed by too many shows and films being released too closely together, resulting in lower box office numbers at cinemas and lower viewership.

The massive expansion of the Marvel Cinematic Universe also caused creative issues, leading to some of the latest releases underperforming, which has resulted in Marvel Studios drastically reducing the number of projects it’s working on at any one time.

Recently, while promoting the Searchlight Pictures’ film, “Poor Things”, Hulk actor Mark Ruffalo spoke with GQ magazine and was asked about the current state of the MCU, to which he replied:

“I think the expansion into streaming was really exciting, but the thing about Marvel movies is you had to wait three years and that created a mystique.  These corrections could be really positive things. Will it be what it was? I don’t know.”

Many Marvel fans are hoping that a reduction in the number of shows and films being created will help the creative teams make better products since they shouldn’t be as stretched out on as many projects at once.  It should also help increase Disney+ viewership and box office numbers if these new films and shows are not only better, but there should be more excitement about them since we’ll have to wait a little longer between the latest releases.  And this will help with the issue of superhero fatigue that’s impacting across all movies and shows in the genre.

Another side effect of the recent box office failures of movies like “The Marvels” and “Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania” is that the budgets for those films were based on them making over a billion at the box office, resulting in them being very expensive to make and ultimately resulted in a massive loss for the company.

And with Marvel Studios looking to reduce the budgets of its films and shows, it might mean we are going to see much less of the Hulk on our screens and we are very unlikely to see a standalone Hulk film, as Mark Ruffalo explained:

“I’d love to do a standalone Hulk, I just don’t think that’s ever going to happen.  It’s very expensive if you did a whole movie, which is why they use the Hulk so sparingly. I priced myself out!”

There have been other issues for Marvel Studios with regards to Hulk since Comcast has had the rights to distribute any Hulk standalone film, which is why Hulk hasn’t had a standalone title since “The Incredible Hulk” in 2008, which was before Disney brought Marvel.

Without a doubt, Marvel Studios has been doing a deep dive into what’s gone wrong with its latest wave of releases, and there isn’t just one single reason for it, but Disney executives want Marvel to spend less and focus their efforts on making better shows and films.  But hopefully, we still get to see Hulk turn up every now and again to Smash!

Would you like to see a “Hulk” standalone movie?  Let us know on social media!

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Roger Palmer

Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom. Email: Twitter: Facebook:

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