Watch Your Back, Spidey - Tom Rothman Becomes New Sony Honcho
This is really bizarre news to me: Tom Rothman has been named the head of Sony Motion Pictures Group, stepping over inhouse candidates Doug Belgrad and Steve Mosko. This comes as Amy Pascal steps down/was fired after the events of the hack, and just a week after Marvel announced they were working with Sony to bring Spider-Man into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Rothman used to run Fox during one of the great studio's low periods. He was cheap, so the movies often made money, but Fox was turning out absolute shit during his tenure. What's more, Rothman hates superhero movies, and he personally blocked a Deadpool film and refused to allow Sentinels to be used in an X-Men film. Like, he said in a meeting 'no giant robots.' Rothman became famous among nerds for micromanaging X-Men Origins: Wolverine to the point where he demanded sets be repainted without telling director Gavin Hood. It's pretty likely that the Marvel/Fox split (which is so ugly I can't even tell you - the two companies literally trolled each other in the media, which is what led to that Galactus being swapped for Daredevil story at one point) has a lot to do with Rothman.
And now he's running Sony. He'll likely bring his tight purse strings to a studio that needs to stop bleeding cash, but what else will happen? Sony, for all of its other problems, has been trying some fun stuff, stuff I can't see happening under Rothman. Will that 21 Jump Street/Men in Black crossover just go away now? And what's going to happen to Spider-Man? Last week I was pondering what exactly the Marvel/Sony deal looked like - what was written in stone, what kind of time frame Marvel has to work with Spidey, stuff like that - and it was because whoever followed Pascal in Sony's driver's seat was a wild card. Would they be into what Marvel was doing, or would they want to squash it?
I feel like Tom Rothman could become the JJJ to Marvel's Spider-Man.
We'll see what happens. I don't feel like this is great news for anybody who likes movies, to say the least. I really thought Rothman was done, that his eon had passed and he was moving on. Guess not. And to all the Sony publicists who will have to deal with Rothman's ire in the coming months and years: sorry, especially for when he gets mad about stuff we run here.