Namor may have made his MCU debut in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, but don’t expect the Submariner to have his own MCU effort any time soon… or ever!
Plenty of people have had plenty to say about Tenoch Huerta and his debut as the fan favorite character, however Namor is locked out of Marvel Studio’s reach should they ever want to make him the star of his own show. It is basically The Incredible Hulk all over again. They can use him in an ensemble like Avengers, or they can have him cameo in another heroes movie, but they can’t put him in the centre of a standalone as Universal Pictures own his ass… or at least, the movie rights to it.
Part of the contractual fun is that he isn’t even allowed to appear by himself in any marketing materials, unless it’s part of a series of character posters. Producer Nate Moore spoke to The Wrap and said it is a weird situation:
“It honestly affects us more, and not to talk too much out of school, but in how we market the film than it does how we use him in the film.
There weren’t really things we couldn’t do from a character perspective for him, which is good because clearly, we took a ton of inspiration from the source material, but we also made some big changes to really anchor him in that world in a truth that publishing never really landed on, I would argue, in a big way.”
Universal tried making a Namor movie throughout much of the early 2000s, as superhero movies were going though their first renaissance post Batman And Robin. Unbelievably it nearly got the go ahead with none other than The Right Stuff director Philip Kaufman attached and Batman writer Sam Hamm on the script.
Road to Perdition writer David Self was also in with Chris Columbus (Harry Potter) set to direct, but that also died. Terminator 3 helmer Jonathan Mostow was hired to direct, but the project was stuck in development hell for years.