HAPPY WANDAVISION DAY, EVERYBODY! Yes, after 18 months of no Marvel entries, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is officially back today. And damn is it about to get busy as 2021 sees one of the most jam-packed release schedules ever for the comic book movie studio thanks to both feature films and Disney+ series. In fact, it’s going to be a couple of busy years as Marvel has already announced a massive list of titles as part of Phase 4 of the MCU, with projects pegged all the way through to 2023.
That isn’t where Marvel boss Kevin Feige and co’s plans end though. The studio is famous for its foresight and playing the long game, which has led to the unmatched accomplishments of the MCU and making Feige the most successful movie producer in history (his films have earned a combined total of $22.55 billion!). And the same meticulous planning is happening for the next stage of Marvel as Feige told Collider that on top of the small mountain of productions already announced, they’ve also got plans in place for the next half-decade or so.
To varying degrees of specificity, it’s always about 5 to 6 years out versus what we’ve announced. So whatever that takes us to.
So what do those plans contain? Feige isn’t sharing, but based on the seeds we’re seeing being planted, we can make some educated guesses, like Young Avengers perhaps. The most obvious one would be the X-Men, which Marvel finally reacquired the rights to after Disney’s takeover of Fox. In early 2019, Feige had said that the MCU debut of Marvel’s mutants wouldn’t happen for “a very long time”, but could they be in these five-year plans?
It has been heavily discussed, as you might imagine. And we have a good feeling of where it’s going and when it’s going, but that all remains to be seen.
Who else could be headlining some future Marvel productions though? Well, there’s a whole bunch of heroes that currently have nothing to do and are just sitting around. I’m referring to the “Defenders” from the now-defunct Marvel Television’s deal with Netflix which gave us Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Punisher. As part of the original deal with Netflix, after each respective character’s show ended, a non-competition clause kicks in that prevented Marvel from using the characters for two years. As of late last year, that period was up for Daredevil and a few others, with the rest following over the next few months.
As such, rumours have swirled that Charlie Cox’s Daredevil would show up in Spider-Man 3 and, most recently, that Krysten Ritter’s Jessica Jones would have a role in She-Hulk. Feige is not confirming any of that but had this to say about the potential inclusion of the Netflix characters into the MCU when he spoke to The Hollywood Reporter:
Everything is on the board. That’s one of the fun things about the comics is that characters would appear and disappear and come and go. All of it is inspiration for the future. There are some great characters and actors from those shows.
At the very least, I’ll guess that Daredevil has to be included in Marvel’s future plans. Cox’s take on the character – not to mention Vincent D’Onofrio as his nemesis The Kingpin – was too beloved for Feige just to ignore it. In fact, I would say it’s almost a certainty we’ll see Cox as the Man With No Fear again as Feige and co will find a way to bring them in. Now if they could just find a way to also redeem Iron Fist, that would be great.
Last Updated: January 15, 2021