Sony has publicly responded to the reports that the company balked at Disney's proposed deal for Marvel Studios' President Kevin Feige to continue producing Spider-Man films.
“Much of today’s news about Spider-Man has mischaracterized recent discussions about Kevin Feige’s involvement in the franchise," Sony Pictures said in a statement on Twitter. "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."
Sony seems to be both opening the door to further negotiations and re-framing the issue to Disney pulling Feige from the property and not themselves for pushing him off.
"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," Sony 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."
It isn't clear if Sony's framing of the issue as time management with the newly-reacquired X-Men and Fantastic Four film rights is something Disney relayed to them in the negotiation process. According to the original report from Deadline, Disney asked for 50% of all profits from Sony's upcoming Spider-Man films - a big leap from the reported 5% share of first-dollar gross that Disney and Sony originally agreed to in 2015.
If Disney and Sony do not come to terms on a new deal, the non-involvment of Feige (and by proxy, Marvel Studios) in Sony's Spider-Man films would seemingly prevent Spider-Man and other characters from continuing to co-exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe - or at least leave it in a hazy state similar to Marvel Television's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and its ties to the MCU.