Marvel announces nine new movies
Last week Marvel Studios teased us with the promise of a mysterious, major announcement coming on Tuesday. The studio followed through today, revealing its upcoming slate of movies for the next five years, including five sequels and four original movies.
Marvel’s announcement fills in the blanks for its upcoming Phase Three, which seems to begin with the third Captain America film. Up to this point, it was thought that Ant-Man, which hits theaters on July 17, 2015, would kick off the new phase, while Avengers: Age of Ultron would be the finale of Phase Two. It now seems like Phase Three will begin on May 6, 2016 with Captain America.
As for the reveal itself, the timing is a bit suspect. Warner Bros and DC recently held a similar event to outline its plans for the rest of the decade. Marvel has been hinting at a major announcement coming for a while now, but whether they meant this reveal, or the news that “Civil War” was coming is unclear. And really, who cares? Superhero fans have a whole lot to look forward to, and that’s the important thing.
A tiny bit of the thunder from the show may have been stolen when news of Benedict Cumberbatch being chosen to star in Doctor Strange recently leaked, but there were still plenty of surprises, and at least one major casting announcement.
Here’s the full list with dates, plus a little of what we know about each film:
Marvel started the day by messing with people. Initially the name of the next Captain America film was listed as “Serpent Society,” which is the name of a team of supervillains that Cap fought in the comics. Marvel then revealed the film’s real subtitle, Civil War.
The news of the “Civil War” storyline coming to the big screen in Captain America’s next film broke awhile back, but there was still one major surprise to come. Starring alongside Chris Evans as Captain America and Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Marvel will introduce the character of T’Challa, aka Black Panther, who will be played by Chadwick Boseman (42, Get On Up). The character will then go on to star in his own movie.
Doctor Strange (November 4, 2016)
Although negotiations are still ongoing, Marvel has chosen Cumberbatch to take on the role of the Sorcerer Supreme. The film will be directed Scott Derrickson (Sinister, The Day the Earth Stood Still), and is said to be a traditional origin story, and an “acid trip through different worlds.”
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (May 5, 2017)
The offbeat sequel was originally scheduled for release on July 28, 2017, but that date will now be occupied by the third Thor. The cast from the original Guardians film are set to return, and the rumor is that Thanos will either be the primary antagonist, or at least feature more prominently.
Thor: Ragnarok (July 28, 2017)
Chris Hemsworth’s original contract includes one more Thor film, and one more Avengers movie after Avengers: Age of Ultron, although he could still be lured back for more. President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige previously stated that the final moments of Thor: The Dark World would set the stage for the third film, and that Loki would return. There is a story arc in the Thor comics titled “Ragnarok,” and in it, Thor and the Asgardians all die (for a bit). No word on if the film will follow this story or just use the name.
No solid details were given on the Black Panther film, except that it will star Boseman. “He’s a bit of a prince, he may even become a bit of a king, but it’s all about how this isolationist country meets the world,” Feige said. “Maybe it goes well, maybe it doesn’t.” Marvel also released concept art for the character.
Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 (May 4, 2018)
It’s far too early to have firm details about the third (and fourth) Avengers film, but we know a few things and suspect a few others. To begin with, this film will likely feature a new roster of Avengers. According to Feige, we’ll see a new Avengers lineup by the end of Age of Ultron, and the studio has repeatedly said the Avengers are a team known for changing its members – so expect a few new members.
Given that the villain is almost certainly Thanos, you can also expect the Avengers to meet up with the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Captain Marvel (July 6, 2018)
Captain Marvel will feature the first female superhero in a standalone Marvel film. There have been a handful of characters to use the Captain Marvel name, but the film will feature the current title holder, Carol Danvers. No word on who will write or direct, but don’t be surprised to hear an announcement about the star sooner rather than later. She will then probably be introduced long before her solo movie comes around.
The Inhumans (November 2, 2018)
A movie featuring the Inhumans has been rumored for a while now, but it’s too early to know how exactly they will fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Given the team’s extraterrestrial origins (assuming the movie origin sticks somewhat close to the comics), they may feature into the Infinity War storyline. Possibly even earlier.
Avengers: Infinity War – Part II (May 3, 2019)
Odds are, this film will be shot back-to-back with Part 1, but that isn’t confirmed. If it is, it raises the question of how this would affect the existing contracts with the existing actors. For example, as mentioned above, Hemsworth’s contract currently includes one more Thor film and two more Avengers movies. With Ragnarok confirmed and Age of Ultron moving into post-production, he will still have one more contractually obligated Avengers film to go. If they split Infinity War into two, they will need to renegotiate his contract – and he won’t be alone.
If it is shot alongside Part 1, that could also make it difficult to lure back Joss Whedon, who has already hinted that he may step away from the franchise – at least as its director – after Age of Ultron. It should make for an interesting round of contract negotiations, always assuming the upcoming Avengers sequel does well – and based on the record setting trailer views and the insane box office of the first film, it will.