As the dust settled on Marvel D23 presentation, fans had a number of revelations to chew on – from casts for the Love at first sight and Captain America: New World Orderat trailers for Secret Invasion and night werewolf. What did they not understand? Henry Cavill and Jodie Comer in the MCU or full castings for the Fantastic Four that have been rumored on Twitter, though those rumors have no apparent basis in reality.
Yes, the rumor mill is still spinning. Fans are hungry to know what’s to come, to see their speculations validated and their impatience eased. It’s (mostly) understandable and fun. But the fake scoops have begun to impact, however slightly, public opinion on official announcements and even shape conversations around the films. It’s ultimately a minor concern right now in the grand scheme of things, but interesting in terms of how social media continues to drive fan culture and how that relationship will continue to evolve.
Reading scoops is often part of the excitement for many fans, and there are a good handful of scoops that are always reliable. However, as we saw recently with last weekend’s D23, unreliable scoopers have thrived on the attention that comes from posting flimsy information and supporting them with their likely ‘trusted source’. non-existent. Entire websites and accounts have dedicated themselves to this misinformation. It’s not new. I still remember when star wars episode 2 would have been titled “The Creeping Fear” in the early 2000s when I was still using remote access. And before that, rumors circulated freely on forums and in fanzines. It’s often harmless fun, and those of us who can spot a lie can usually ignore them or at least scoff at the absurdity. I mean, of course, Daniel Day-Lewis won’t be playing Doctor Doom.
Should these fake reporters be arrested for their lies? Some media critics and pundits seem to think so. Others are content to simply allow them to be noise to listen to or avoid at your discretion.
Earlier this month, a man running a Twitter account primarily known for sports commentary and a running podcast claimed he had been reliably told that actors John Boyega, Cavill, Comer, Daisy Edgar-Jones, John Krasinski, Giancarlo Esposito and Denzel Washington would all be announced. to join the MCU by Kevin Feige at the D23 Expo. The tweet amassed 14,000 likes and was shared and shared across the internet. Fans did their best to pair the actors with likely characters they could play. Fan art has been made. YouTube videos have been uploaded. And small but confident squabbles started on Twitter about whether actor X was the right person, his age, or his talent for character X. Family members texted me asking if I had heard about the cast list and if it was true. So how many talents on the account were confirmed on D23? None. Zero. Not one.
It would be funny, and still is a little funny regardless, if it didn’t immediately lead to those who fully embraced what this account was selling souring on the ads. “We were promised the cast of Fantastic Four and X-Men,” some accounts lamented, though that never happened. “Maybe they cut those ads off the panel because of the leak,” others tried to rationalize, despite the theory that doesn’t hold water.
It’s not like we have to be grateful to a giant media company for what is essentially a self-invested publicity show, but I’m amused by the complaints that fans haven’t received enough when there was two trailers released and several major casting calls. advertisement.
This follows San Diego Comic-Con in July which unveiled most of the Slate of phases 5 and 6, after some hilarious claims that the MCU no longer had a plan. One account tweeted that Marvel didn’t seem to care what fans wanted anymore, which was a funny feeling considering these movies sell out and anyone who complains is going to see them, whether they’re announced at a panel or not. No, we don’t need to be grateful. But at the same time, we don’t need to see any of these ads for tickets to sell out and streaming numbers to skyrocket. It’s purely fan-service.
But beyond some fans’ immediate disappointment over a panel that doesn’t align with “scoopers” claims, there’s also the effect on reactions to the films themselves. We have seen this with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madnesswho had fans, working on rumors from “reliable sources”, coming in and waiting for the equivalent of Secret WarsRather than a strange doctor after. Due to fake scoops some people went ahead and wrote Multiverse of Madness In Their Heads, a film starring Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man, Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man, Nicolas Cage’s Ghost Rider, Wesley Snipes’ Blade, Ioan Gruffudd’s Mister Fantastic, Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, Ben’s Daredevil Affleck, Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool, alongside MCU characters Loki, Sylvie and Kang. O
Oh, and Chris Evans returns as HYDRA Cap. And also, Tom Cruise as Superior Iron Man. And I guess somewhere in there Doctor Strange would have made an appearance.
It’s not that the absence of any of these characters had any impact on the box office, or an overall positive reception, or that there weren’t valid criticisms regarding other aspects. , but it has exacerbated this problem of some fans feeling indebted for something. because they read a rumor online.
So I can’t help but wonder what will happen if Jodie Comer isn’t cast as Sue Storm after fans have already decided she’s “perfect” for the role because a scooper claimed it was true. Which actress will have to deal with fans saying she’s not as good as another actor who may not even have been ready for the role? What if the actress played by Sue was not a blonde and white woman? Well, we already know how too many people will react to this.
What happens when characters who are supposed to be part of a movie are missing because they were never part of the plot? There’s been some whining about Red Hulk not being included in the announced lineup of Love at first sight, although he was only a member of one race nearly a decade ago. Someone tweeted me to let me know we were promised Red Hulk in She-Hulk: Lawyer (we weren’t) so it must be in Love at first sight.
I found it potentially troubling that there are now backlashes from audiences mistaking an unreliable scoop for an actual promise from a studio or filmmaker. It’s just an annoyance at the moment, but I think we’re going to start seeing more vocal reactions about these projects that don’t live up to what a scooper said.
I don’t necessarily think this will affect the creative process, but it will affect conversations around these films, and potentially leave less room to judge the film on its own merits if too many fans are more interested in self-views -calling scoopers than filmmakers. Call it intuition. Call it a rumor. Shit, call that nonsense. But please don’t call it a scoop.