And the game of one-upmanship between DC and Marvel continues, and boy did Marvel just take a massive step up. In a (not so) secret event held last night, Marvel Studios exec Kevin Feige unveiled their full plans for Phase 3, including previously rumoured titles, new characters and even a trailer for the next Avengers movie. No, not The Avengers: Age of Ultron, I mean the neeeext Avengers movie after that. That’s now going to be two movies. Confused? Well, let me break it all down for you.
First up, the big news that everybody has been asking for years: Black Panther is now official and will star 42‘s Chadwick Boseman as the Prince of Wakanda. Carol Danvers will also finally be making her solo movie debut in Captain Marvel, while Black Bolt and his family will now be showing up officially in an Inhumans movie.
Besides for the new titles, details were also revealed on upcoming sequels: Captain America 3 is now confirmed to be titled Captain America: Civil War as we all theorized, so get ready for those Captain America vs Iron Man battles. Thor 3 has now also picked up the full title of Thor: Ragnarok, which if you’re familiar with the comic means major things (in a nutshell, it’s the total destruction of Asgard’s existence). And finally, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, which will once again see James Gunn take the reins, has been pushed forward from the end of 2017 to May of that year.
But the major revelation that probably broke the internet in half, was that capping off Phase 3 would be The Avengers: Infinity War and just like the rumours predicted, it will indeed be split into two parts. What’s more, Marvel then surprised everybody in attendance by unveiling a teaser trailer for Avengers: Infinity War that apparently brought the house down. At the time of writing this, the trailer was not online yet, but you can be damn sure that we’ll be posting that as soon as it is.
Along with the titles, we got a few details around the movies as well. Chadwick Boseman will actually be making his debut in costume as Black Panther in Captain America: Civil War, in which it is said he will play a major role. On top of that, the first artwork for the movie was released giving us a look at his costume, which looks to be an amazing blend of the traditional look and modern tech.
Feige went on to explain the importance of Prince T’Challa and his country of Wakanda:
“Black Panther and all of Wakanda is one of the most interesting characters in Marvel history. Something I already showed you today contains an Easter egg that leads directly into ‘Black Panther.’ 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. Maybe it goes well, maybe it doesn’t.”
The fiction country of Wakanda is a completely isolated (by choice) African society with technology more advanced than anywhere else in the world thanks to sitting on the largest deposit of vibranium (the incredible metal used to create Captain America’s shield, and what many theorize will be Ultron’s final form).
As previously mentioned, Feige confirmed that Captain Marvel will indeed feature Carol Danvers. He also addressed the fact that were acutely aware of fans asking for the character for ages – especially since the comic book movie business is so male-dominated – but that they just needed the right environment to introduce her. Specifically, a cosmic one:
“This film has been in the works almost as long as Doctor Strange or Guardians of the Galaxy before it came out, and one of the key things was figuring out what we wanted to do with it. Her adventures are very earthbound, but her powers are based in the cosmic realm.”
In the comics, Carol Danvers is an US Air Force officer who gets powers of flight, strength and energy manipulation when she comes into contact with a Kree alien device – the very same Kree race we just saw introduced in Guardians of the Galaxy. Initially calling herself Ms Marvel – followed by a whole list of other code names – 2013 saw her earning the title of Captain Marvel, taking on the mantle of one of the most respected and beloved heroes in the Marvel universe who had passed away 3 decades ago. Feige added that a writer and director for Captain Marvel would be announced soon, but they still had quite a long way to go when it came to casting the leading lady (anybody know what Katee Sackhoff is up to in a couple of years?).
Considering the recently rumoured revelation that Benedict Cumberbatch had landed the lead role in Doctor Strange, some fans may be a bit disappointed that Feige didn’t speak much about the movie other than to officially confirm Scott Derrickson as the director. At this point, after an almost weekly rumour about some big-time celeb having landed the gig, I just want some official casting info as this has been dragging on far too long now. That’s a sentiment that Feige can almost relate to:
“I think I’ve been talking about ‘Doctor Strange’ since the day I was born. Because I love it, because it’s very important to us, and because it takes us a while to work on these movies.
The long rumoured Inhumans was touched upon, highlighting how their origin makes for a very diverse movie:
“We believe Inhumans can be a franchise. They have dozens of different power bases. They have an amazing social structure. And tons of spectacular new powers, new effects.”
And if you’re one of the folks, like our very own Trevor, that have cottoned to the theory that what’s currently going down in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. may tie into the introduction of this superhuman society, then you may just be on to something:
“With the Inhumans, there may be Easter eggs before you know it. [You may see where they fit in] sooner than you’re expecting.”
Now I posted a long diatribe a few weeks ago on why I thought that a straightforward adaptation of the Civil War comic book storyline wouldn’t quite work based on the status of the current Marvel Cinematic Universe – namely, certain key characters being missing, and the fact that there are no real masked heroes to force to unveil their secret identities. And well I guess I’m a pretty good reader of the lay of the land, because Feige agrees with me.
“I don’t want to give too much away, but needless to say, the generalities of the act are the same. Something happens, perhaps it’s cumulative for things that have happened though all of the movies leading up to this point. It has made the governments of the world say ‘We need to have some oversight of these guys. They need to report to somebody’. So it becomes more… it falls under that umbrella, rather than “you have to take off your mask.” 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. Because as of now, in Avengers 2, there is no more security council, there is no SHIELD, obviously. Stark is paying for it, Captain America is running it, and things occur that will make governments begin to question.”
As for Thor: Ragnarok, we can expect it to change the landscape of the Marvel Cinematic Universe significantly. This should come as no surprise based on that title which is essentially the name of the Norse version of Armageddon (and also one of most important stories in Thor’s publication history). Feige stressed the importance of this story by stating that “this is a very important movie for us in Phase 3. We plan on taking Thor to another level. It picks up where we leave Thor in ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ and impacts everything that comes after.”
Just what it is that comes after this is anybody’s guess (Annihilation Wave anybody?), as Feige confirmed that everything they’ve done up until now will be coming to a head as the heroes take on Thanos in The Avengers: Infinity War.
[UPDATE: A bootleg version of the entire event has now popped up online. Skip to 10:43 to watch the Avengers: Infinity War teaser while it lasts!]
“We’ve always had a plan since Nick Fury broke into Tony Stark’s house and told him he’s part of a bigger universe. ‘Avengers: Infinity War Part 1’ is the beginning of the culmination of everything that has come before.”
Yes, I know it’s mostly recycled footage, but hot damn!
Feige ended off the whole presentation by saying that “we have a lot of work to do,” And looking at this now completed lineup through to 2019, I think that’s a bit of an understatement.
- May 6, 2016 – Captain America: Civil War
- November 4, 2016 – Doctor Strange
- May 5, 2017 – Guardians Of The Galaxy 2
- July 28, 2017 – Thor: Ragnarok
- November 3, 2017 – Black Panther
- May 4, 2018 – Avengers: Infinity War – Part I
- July 6, 2018 – Captain Marvel
- November 2, 2018 – The Inhumans
- May 3, 2019 – Avengers: Infinity War – Part II
I think I’ll let this whole lineup just stew in my brain for a while before I start postulating on how it all could possibly tie together – Captain Marvel and The Inhumans being positioned between Part 1 & 2 of Avengers: Infinity War already has the geek centres of my brain on overdrive. So until I drop my crazy theories on you guys, you will have to tide yourself over by just rewatching that Age of Ultron trailer. As if you mind, right?
PS: No, there were no standalone Hulk movies announced – sorry, Planet Hulk fans – but it was revealed that Hulk would be appearing in several of the movies unveiled in this presentation. The where’s and how’s of his appearances were not elaborated on though, but I have a feeling they may have something to do with him smashing stuff.
Last Updated: October 29, 2014