By all accounts, Fantastic Four is a failure.

Whether due to the director's alleged erratic behavior or 20th Century Fox's alleged interference in production and editing, at the end of the day it doesn't really matter. Fox's third go at a Fantastic Four movie is a flop, so you'd expect the studio to throw in the towel, right?

"While we're disappointed, we remain committed to these characters," Fox's domestic distribution guru Chris Aronson told The Hollywood Reporter, "and we have a lot to look forward to in our Marvel universe."

Cryptic sentiments to be certain, but Aronson's comments seem to indicate that despite Fantastic Four's poor history at the box office, Fox isn't ready to give up on the team yet. This is rather surprising, as most analysts expected Fox to throw in the towel after three strikes, allowing Marvel to reclaim the Fantastic Four film rights.

It's hard to imagine that Fox would be willing to give the Four another big-budget movie if it's just going to lose money. One alternate possibility was mentioned by X-Men director Bryan Singer. In an interview posted online, Singer said that crossovers between the X-Men films and the Fantastic Four movies were being considered, since they're both Marvel properties.

Might Reed, Sue, Johnny or Ben show up in a future X-Men movie? There are plenty on the docket, with X-Men: Apocalypse currently in production, Deadpool in theaters early next year, and both Wolverine 3 and Gambit in the works. The X-Men movies always pull in big ticket sales, so Fox is sure to want more mutant adventures beyond what's been announced.

In terms of numbers, predictions for Fantastic Four's domestic opening weekend put it in the $40-50 million range, but it earned just $26.2 million. The movie's international take was $60.3 million, which certainly helps but was still far below expectations.

A sequel was announced before the movie's premiere, scheduled for June 2017. That film's status is now up in the air, as are its prospects at launching a new franchise. Hopefully Fox will make its intentions for the Fantastic Four clear soon.

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