Originally Posted by metaphysician
Could always be the good old sunk cost fallacy, and Fox would rather lose money keeping the rights than let them go. Which is my current suspicion, given the extremely short notice and absolutely zero casting news.
This is my fear.
Fox gains nothing by losing the rights. However, by retaining the rights (even by means of losing money on a film), they retain the ability to attempt to make money on this franchise in the future and can even use the rights as a bargaining chip with Marvel Studios.
However, my hope is sustained by Fox's fumbling of the Daredevil rights just last year. They could have easily threw a film together to retain all of those characters...and it seemed like they tried to, much like they're doing with Fantastic Four. But in the end, it fell apart.
And maybe (hopefully), this will too.