Mark MillarIn a press release yesterday, Fox announced some surprising news and named celebrated comics creator Mark Millar as their Creative Consultant for upcoming projects involving their Marvel properties.

Millar has worked on several Marvel comics such as ‘The Ultimates,’ ‘Civil War,’ ‘Marvel Knights Spider-Man’ and ‘Wolverine: Old Man Logan’ before branching off and forming his own company Millarworld where he continues to develop franchise titles such as ‘Kick-Ass,’ ‘The Secret Service,’ ‘and ‘Nemesis’ with the latter two in development to become feature films. In his native UK, Millar is also the editor of CLiNT magazine and an advisor on film to the Scottish government,

Millar’s new position at Fox will allow him to formally consult and develop “new avenues for its ‘X-Men’ and ‘Fantastic Four’ tentpoles.” From that description, it sounds like Fox is thinking beyond just one sequel for their Marvel properties. Since ‘The Wolverine’ is deep into production, it’s highly unlikely that he’ll have much to say on that film’s progress, but in the next few months, Matthew Vaughn (who will be penning the screenplay for ‘The Secret Service’) will begin production on ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ so Millar may start his duties there and continue with the ‘Fantastic Four’ reboot which, coincidently, he has knowledge of as he co-wrote the first six issues of the ‘Ultimate Fantastic Four’ comics with Brian Michael Bendis, so this is something right up his alley.

Of the hiring, Emma Watts, President of TCF Production, commented:

“We are excited to be working with Mark. In addition to his groundbreaking Marvel work, he is simply one of the most original voices in comics today and will be an invaluable resource to us and to our filmmakers as we look for fresh opportunities to innovate within our shared Marvel universe.”

Millar also issued a statement saying:

“As someone who has spent his entire life obsessed with both comic-books and movies, this is essentially my dream gig as it’s a unique combination of both. I spent ten years working at Marvel and am really happy with the work I did on the comic side of things so the idea of working with these characters now in a brand new medium is enormously exciting for me. I really like the Fox team, love this bold new direction they have for their franchises and am proud to be working alongside some of modern cinema’s biggest talents. James Mangold is incredible, Matthew Vaughn’s one of my closest pals and Josh Trank gave us, in my opinion, one of the greatest superhero movies of the last decade with Chronicle. The invitation to join this crew was maybe the coolest phone-call I’ve ever had.”

Millar does have the ability to shape the Marvel properties that Fox has and while he’s no Joss Whedon, he can provide a separate set of eyes and give guidance to those filmmakers involved who might not be as knowledgeable as he about the comic characters.

Obviously many studios will be trying to recreate the success of Disney-Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and this may be Fox’s first step in that attempt.

Do you think Millar has the ability to bring the studio’s Marvel franchise to that level? Sound off in the comments below!