Deadline has been able to speak with ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke about the future of Marvel shows at ABC, as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is about to head off into the sunset as the series is ending and Marvel Television is being folded into Marvel Studios.
Kevin Feige, Marvel’s new chief creative officer will now be handling film, television, animation, and publishing with Marvel Television’s former head Jeph Loeb said to be leaving as soon as the transition has completed.
Burke reveals they’re in early discussions with Kevin, but they haven’t directly talked about which characters would be the best fit for the network.
ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke said that she was looking forward to working with Marvel Studios President and Chief Creative Officer Feige, but said that they had not discussed which particular characters would be suitable for a broadcast show.
BURKE: “We love our partners at Marvel and we’re sad to see [Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D] go, it’s been a big part of our history. We’re looking forward to working with Kevin Feige and we’re at the very beginning of conversations with him now about what a Marvel and ABC show might look like. Right now, Marvel’s focus has been on Disney+, as it should be.”
Feige recently said at CCXP 2019 in Brazil that the Disney+ shows will be the first time the television shows and films would be interlinking, potentially suggesting that the Loeb era was not part of Feige’s MCU.
Arguably, ABC is going to have to agree to spend a certain amount of money to get access to characters as Disney+ is spending top-dollar to make sure live-action shows such as The Falcon & The Winter Soldier, WandaVision, Loki, Ms Marvel, She-Hulk, and Moon Knight on the level of the films (reportedly costing much more than Lucasfilm’s Star Wars show The Mandalorian).
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was originally a replacement when development on an Incredible Hulk series that had a pilot written by Guillermo del Toro before it fell apart.
Loeb’s Inhumans series on ABC was considered a massive blunder and I would assume that Feige will want to have complete creative control as whatever show this ends up being it’ll be a hard-canon series set within the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
What characters or superhero teams could be heading to ABC remains to be seen, but with the introduction of S.W.O.R.D. in WandaVision that might be a good replacement series for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but that is simply speculation at this point.
S.W.O.R.D. could be slightly less costly than having a big-name superhero and could employ the cost-cutting/advanced visual effects techniques recently used on The Mandalorian from ILM’s newly formed television division.