Sony Pictures 'disappointed' by Disney’s divorce on 'Spider-Man' projects

Sony Pictures has gone public over its divorce with Disney on future “Spider-Man” projects.

In a rare public rebuke to Disney, Sony announced Tuesday night that it was “disappointed” over the decision, highlighting Disney’s refusal to allow Marvel President Kevin Feige to continue as a producer on the projects. It also praised Feige, who teamed with Amy Pascal on “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” which became Sony’s most successful release earlier this week in terms of global box office.

“Much of today’s news about Spider-Man has mischaracterized recent discussions about Kevin Feige’s involvement in the franchise,” Sony said in a statement. “We are disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision not to have him continue as a lead producer of our next live action Spider-Man film.”

“We hope this might change in the future, but understand that the many new responsibilities that Disney has given him – including all their newly added Marvel properties – do not allow time for him to work on IP they do not own,” the statement continued. “Kevin is terrific and we are grateful for his help and guidance and appreciate the path he has helped put us on, which we will continue.”

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LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 07: Actors Tom Holland (L) and Zendaya speak onstage during the 2017 MTV Movie And TV Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on May 7, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - MAY 05: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Actor Tom Holland attends Los 40 Principales fan event to promote the new film 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' at St. Regis Hotel on May 5, 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Victor Chavez/WireImage)
SAO PAULO, BRAZIL - MAY 02: Laura Harrier and Tom Holland pose during a press conference at Grand Hyatt on May 2, 2017 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Mauricio Santana/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 05: Actor Tom Holland arrives at the Premiere of Amazon Studios' 'The Lost City of Z' at ArcLight Hollywood on April 5, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 27: Actor Tom Holland attends a photo call for Columbia Pictures' 'Spiderman: Homecoming' during CinemaCon at Caesars Palace on March 27, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/WireImage)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 16: Tom Holland attends the European Film Premiere of 'The Lost City of Z' at British Museum on February 16, 2017 in London, England. PHOTOGRAPH BY Brett Cove / Barcroft Images London-T:+44 207 033 1031 E:hello@barcroftmedia.com - New York-T:+1 212 796 2458 E:hello@barcroftusa.com - New Delhi-T:+91 11 4053 2429 E:hello@barcroftindia.com www.barcroftimages.com (Photo credit should read Brett Cove / Barcroft Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Tom Holland arrives at The Lost City of Z UK premiere on February 16, 2017 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: (L-R) Tom Holland, Robert Pattinson, Sienna Miller and Charlie Hunnam attend the UK premiere of 'The Lost City of Z' at British Museum on February 16, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images )
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 12: Tom Holland attends as The Weinstein Company, Entertainment Film Distributors and STUDIOCANAL celebrate the 2017 BAFTA after party in partnership with Ben Sherman, Kat Florence, and Grey Goose at Rosewood London on February 12, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for The Weinstein Company)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Charlie Hunnam (L) and Tom Holland arrive at The Lost City of Z UK Premiere at The British Museum on February 16, 2017 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 12: Tom Holland (R) and mother, Nicola Elizabeth Frost attends as The Weinstein Company, Entertainment Film Distributors and STUDIOCANAL celebrate the 2017 BAFTA after party in partnership with Ben Sherman, Kat Florence, and Grey Goose at Rosewood London on February 12, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for The Weinstein Company)
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With Feige not producing future “Spider-Man” films, the impasse effectively removes Tom Holland’s Spider-Man from the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The dispute stems from Disney’s demand that future “Spider-Man” films would be financed on a 50/50 basis with Feige remaining in a consulting producer capacity. Sony is believed to have proposed keeping the arrangement under the current terms, which stipulate that Marvel receives about 5% of first-dollar gross and all merchandising revenues. However, Disney allegedly expressed concerns that Feige was spread too thin due to other Marvel projects plus original projects for Disney Plus.

Feige achieved his first full producer credits more than a decade ago on “Iron Man” and “The Incredible Hulk.” His films have a combined worldwide box office gross of over $26.8 billion, and he received an Academy Award nomination for best picture after producing “Black Panther” this year, marking the first superhero film ever to receive a best picture nomination. Feige also produced “Avengers: Endgame,” which surpassed “Avatar” this summer as the highest-grossing film of all time.

In 2015, Disney, Marvel and Sony announced a deal to share the “Spider-Man” film rights, which led to Holland portraying a younger version of Spider-Man in “Captain America: Civil War,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” “Avengers: Infinity War,” “Avengers: Endgame” and “Spider-Man: Far From Home.” Sony distributed the films in which Spider-Man was the main character while Disney handled the other titles.

Sony is widely believed to be developing two more “Spider-Man” movies, with Holland reprising his role as the webslinger, but has not officially announced those titles.

Representatives for Disney and for Marvel were not immediately available for comment. Disney purchased Marvel Studios for $4 billion in 2009.

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Spider-Man: Far From Home premiere
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Spider-Man: Far From Home premiere
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Jake Gyllenhaal arrives for the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Tom Holland (L) and Jake Gyllenhaal arrive at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man: Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Zendaya arrives for the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Zendaya arrives at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man: Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Marisa Tomei arrives for the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Tom Holland arrives for the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Wayne Brady and Maile Brady attend the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: J.K. Simmons attends the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Patton Oswalt, Meredith Salenger, and Alice Rigney Oswalt attend the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Izabel Araujo, Joey Fatone, and Briahna Joely Fatone attend the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Samuel L. Jackson arrives for the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: J.B. Smoove and Shahidah Omar attend the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Pete Wentz attends the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Malin Akerman attends the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Kevin Feige arrives for the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" held at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Cobie Smulders and Taran Killam attends the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Rolo Jch attends the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Martin Starr attends the Premiere Of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 26: Jacob Batalon attends the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Spider-Man Far From Home" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 26, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
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