When it comes to entertainment, I’m of the opinion that habits - - both those of the producers and the consumers - - never actually go away; they simply change form. So, like I said way, way back in my very first Comic Vine editorial, I don't think it's a coincidence that the Best Buy shelf is resembling the spinner rack more and more. What manifested in the smaller arena of the comics business will eventually manifest in this bigger multi-media arena, guided by the same "invisible hand" of demand. So, while we may look at all of this as an extension of comics right now, kids who are growing up on the stuff now are going to perceive it as something sui generis. They'll fall into the same habits we have without even being aware of the antecedents.
In simpler terms, spin-off comic movies popping up shouldn't be a surprise, because spin-offs happen so often in comics that readers rarely even notice them anymore. == TEASER ==
What exactly defines a spin-off is tricky, anyway. Was the WOLVERINE movie a spin-off of X-MEN or, for all intents and purposes, X4 in the same way that the next Jack- Sparrow-centric PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN is basically just the fourth entry in its series? Would a DEADPOOL movie be a spin-off of a spin-off? Going back farther, would you consider any Wolverine title a HULK spin-off simply because of how he debuted in the 70s? Is the Punisher a spin-off since he started off as one of Spidey's villains? What it comes down to, I feel, is whether the character’s got enough conceptual weight to stand on his own. You might think that, say, Pyro is awesome as a supporting character in X2, but would you want to see an entire movie about him? When there was talk about a WEREWOLF BY NIGHT or movie, I wasn't sure how it could work, as that monster's basically just the wolfman in the Marvel universe. Take him out of that, and... he’s just the wolfman.Anyway, I think the real answer is that these spin-offs will come out as long as the demand is there. And, getting back to what I was saying about habits transferring, you've already got an example of a field where the demand superheroes, and all their spin-offs, hasn't diminished for decades.