Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe came to a conclusion with the release of 2015’s Ant-Man and as Marvel Studios ramps up production on Phase Three, new rumors are coming out faster than you can say “Hulk Smash!” To help you separate the fact from the fiction, here’s everything you need to know about the next 14 Marvel movies!
Captain America: Civil War
Release Date: May 6, 2016
The final installment of the Captain America trilogy will be loosely based on the Civil War storyline from the comics. In the comics, the U.S. government passes the Superhero Registration Act which requires heroes to disclose their secret identities and register with the Government so they can be regulated and held accountable for their actions. A group of anti-registration heroes, led by Captain America, rallies against pro-registration heroes led by Iron Man in an all out war.
However, the comic version is only an outline of the movie, “It’s not about the secret identity thing, as much as it is about, overall, who reports to who, and who can agree to oversight committee,” explained Kevin Feige, President of Marvel Studios, “Because as of now, in [Age of Ultron], there is no more security council, there is no S.H.I.E.L.D., obviously. Stark is paying for [the Avengers], Captain America is running it, and things occur that will make governments begin to question.”
Bleeding Cool reported that Captain America (Chris Evans), Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Wasp, (Evangeline Lilly), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), and Spider-Man (Tom Holland) will all appear.
However, the Wasp rumor was later refuted, while other heroes like Ant-Man (Paul Rudd), the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), Vision (Paul Bettany), and Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) are confirmed to appear in the film. In September 2015, Mark Ruffalo, revealed that Hulk was also removed from the Civil War script, because Marvel did not “want to reveal where is he and why” just yet.
Captain America, Hawkeye, Falcon, Ant-Man, Sharon Carter, and the Winter Soldier will be pitted against Iron Man, Vision, Black Widow, War Machine, and Black Panther. According to Sebastian Stan, the Winter Soldier will play a more prominent role than in past installations. The recently acquired Spider-Man might also play a big role in the film. In the comics, Spider-Man is caught between the causes led by Captain America and Iron Man. Latino-Review reported Tony Stark will make Spider-Man’s suit and web shooters and Feige has said that Spider-man’s suit “is different than any of the ones that have come before.” In the comics, Tony Stark makes Parker a badass Spidey suit for the Civil War, so it’s possible we’ll see something along those lines.
Despite the appearance of a dozen Marvel heroes, Feige stressed that Captain America: Civil War, “is very much Cap’s movie because it is the culmination of a trilogy that began with Captain America: The First Avenger,” rather than Avengers 2.5. You can check out this r/MarvelStudios thread for a full list of Civil War rumors.
Release Date: November 4, 2016
In May 2013, Kevin Feige confirmed that a Doctor Strange film was in development. Scott Derrickson is set to direct and Jon Spaihts is in negotiations to write the script. Doctor Strange is the story of Doctor Stephen Strange, a top neurosurgeon who discovers a world of magic after he damages his hand in a car accident.
Marvel later confirmed that Benedict Cumberbatch will play the eponymous sorcerer. In December 2015, Entertainment Weekly released the first images of Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange and a Twitter video recently showed off the actor in costume:
— MOOVIE NEWS (@MoovieNewsTweet) February 21, 2016
“I”m very lucky and excited to be playing Doctor Strange for Marvel. He’s an extraordinary character and brings in whole new multiple dimensions to the Marvel Universe,” Cumberbatch explained at the 2015 D23 Expo, “It will bring a mind-blowing experience. You’re going to get girls, cars, explosions, and a bit of astral projecting into multiple dimensions – the usual fare.”
Rachel McAdams, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Tilda Swinton, and Mads Mikkelsen are also rumored to appear in the movie.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Release Date: May 5, 2017
At the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con, Marvel confirmed that a sequel to Guardians of the Galaxy was in development. After the success of the first film, director and co-writer James Gunn said he knew “a lot of where I want to go [in the sequel]. I have a lot of ideas for stories and characters that are going to appear, and there are documents written up,” and Chris Pratt reportedly cried after he heard the pitch for the sequel.
Gunn mentioned the sequel would explore more of the Xandarian, Kree, Krylorian and Ravager cultures as well as backstories of Yondu, Drax, Nebula, and Quill’s father. Gunn also stated that Quill’s father would not be J’son of Spartax like in the comics.
Gunn has mentioned the possibility of an Avengers crossover, “We talked about all sorts of possibilities [for a crossover] and I kind of know what the basic plan is. It could always change at any minute. That could or could not include a couple of Avengers and a couple of Guardians meeting up, or all of the Avengers and all of the Guardians. But, we do inhabit the same universe and they’re pretty big personalities that are likely to, at some point or another, run into each other.”
Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, and Sean Gunn will all reprise their roles from the first film. Newcomers will include Pom Klementieff, Elizabeth Debicki, Chris Sullivan, and Kurt Russell (who some fans have speculated will be playing Star-Lord’s father).
While there’s no news on the soundtrack for the movie (let’s be real, that’s what we’re all looking forward to), Tyler Bates will return to provide the score for the film.
Untitled Spider-Man film
Release Date: July 28, 2017
After Marvel Studios acquired the rights to use Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there were rumors about which version they would use: Peter Parker or Miles Morales (#donaldforspiderman), but Marvel CCO Joe Quesada later confirmed that the Peter Parker version of the character would appear in the MCU.
In April 2015, Kevin Feige said that the reboot would not have an origin story (presumably because audiences are sick seeing Uncle Ben shot to death), and would take inspiration from Batman Begins, staying true to the spirit of the character, while having a different tone from previous adaptations.
Later in 2015, Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios announced that Jon Watts would direct the film and that Tom Holland had signed a three picture deal to play Spider-Man. John Francis Daley & Jonathan M. Goldstein (Horrible Bosses) were also hired to write the film. In July 2015, it was reported that Marisa Tomei was in talks to portray Aunt May, and while there’s no word on who will play J. Jonah Jameson, the world needs J.K. Simmons.
Release Date: November 3, 2017
In January 2014, Marvel announced that Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost will write the script for Thor: Ragnarok. Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, and Jamie Alexander are all expected to return and Taika Waititi is in negotiations to direct the third Thor movie. According to JoBlo, Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk will make his return in Thor: Ragnarok and the film is also rumored to introduce a new female character, perhaps the Enchantress or the Valkyrie.
In the comics, Ragnarok is a cybernetic clone of Thor created by Tony Stark, but the film’s title is mostly likely a reference to battle of Ragnarok from Norse mythology. Ragnarok (which literally translates to “final destiny of the gods”) is a prophesied apocalypse which will kill much of the Norse pantheon including Thor and Loki, “Brothers will fight and kill each other, sisters’ children will defile kinship. It is harsh in the world, whoredom rife—an axe age, a sword age—shields are riven—a wind age, a wolf age—before the world goes headlong. No man will have mercy on another.”
Release Date: February 16, 2018
In October 2014, Marvel Studios officially confirmed that Black Panther would be getting his own solo film. Black Panther is the alter-ego of T’Challa, the king of the fictional African nation of Wakanda and occasional ally to the Avengers. The Wakandan king will be portrayed by Chadwick Boseman who will also appear in Captain America: Civil War.
In October 2015, Joe Robert Cole was tapped to write the film’s script, but the movie is still looking for a director. Marvel is considering Ryan Coogler (Creed) to direct Black Panther as well as F. Gary Gray (Straight Outta Compton), according to Variety. The movie is scheduled for a February 16, 2018 release date, which means the first black superhero will make his solo debut during Black History Month.
Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 and Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2
Release Dates: May 4, 2018 and May 3, 2019
In October 2014, Marvel announced a two-part conclusion to the Avengers trilogy, titled Avengers: Infinity War. Anthony and Joe Russo will direct both films, while Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely will write the two-part finale.
Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Mark Ruffalo, and Jeremy Renner are all expected to reprise their roles for the movies. Brolin will also return to play Thanos (presumably with all six infinity stones in hand), but Joss Whedon has stated that Thanos won’t be the only villian in Infinity War. There’s also speculation that Captain America could die given the fact that Chris Evans’ six movie contract ends after Part 1, leaving the door open for Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) to adopt the Captain America mantle, but Evans could easily extend his contract past Infinity Wars: Part 1.
Ant-Man and the Wasp
Release Date: July 6, 2018
In June 2015, Ant-Man director Peyton Reed stated, “If we were lucky enough to be able to do a sequel or even a prequel, I’d be way into it. I’ve really fallen in love with these characters… [T]here’s a lot of story to tell with Hank Pym,” and Kevin Feige revealed that the studio had “a supercool idea for the next Ant-Man film, and if audiences want it, we’ll find a place to do it.” After the positive reception to Ant-Man, Marvel confirmed a sequel in October 2015, titled Ant-Man and the Wasp.
Release Date: March 8, 2019
In April 2015, Marvel announced that Nicole Perlman (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Meg LeFauve (Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur) will write the script for Captain Marvel. The film version of Captain Marvel will be based on Carol Danvers from the comics and Kevin Feige has stated that she is “one of the most, if not the most, powerful heroes in the MCU.”
Bryce Dallas Howard wants to play Captain Marvel as does Ronda Rousey, but other possibilities include Emily Blunt, Charlize Theron, and Rebecca Ferguson who is reportedly at the top of Marvel’s list. As for directors, Marvel wants a female director to helm Captain Marvel and Angelina Jolie has been heavily rumored as the top choice.
Unfortunately, due to Marvel’s latest reshuffling, Captain Marvel’s release date was been pushed back a year to March 8, 2019. This means we have to wait another year for Marvel’s first female led feature, but Captain Marvel is now being released on International Women’s Day.
Release Date: July 12, 2019
In 2014, Marvel Studios confirmed an Inhumans movie was in development. Despite the film being listed on Marvel’s latest schedule, there are rumors that that Marvel Studios’s answer to the X-Men is circling the drain. However, Vin Diesel recently hinted at the Inhumans, so the project might still be alive after all.
Release Dates: May 1, 2020, July 10, 2020, and November 6, 2020.
Marvel has recently announced three untitled projects set to release in 2020. In the past, there have been discussions about adapting a number of Marvel intellectual properties for the MCU including the Runaways and Blade as well as solo films for Black Widow and Nick Fury, although nothing has been confirmed at this point. There’s also the new rumor circulating that Marvel has gotten back the rights to the Fantastic Four (or Fant-4-stic as the kids call it now a days), but Fox has denied the rumor.
So which of Marvel’s Phase Three movie are you most excited about? Personally, we’re still waiting for a Squirrel Girl movie to be announced.
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