“The hardest choices require the strongest wills,” said Thanos. And soon many Marvel fans will be asking themselves if their will is the strong enough as Marvel’s original characters and stories come to an end and new characters attempt to replace the considerable holes left in the hearts of Marvel’s most dedicated followers.
Just last year, the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) marked the ten year anniversary of it’s first film, Iron Man, while also finishing their last set of films for phase 3. As the last installation of this phase, Avengers Endgame, approaches, fans have found themselves wondering what’s next.
Well, my fellow Marvel addicts, I may be able to offer you some solace in the announcement of six confirmed films coming within the next five years:
- Spider-Man: Far from Home: July 5th, 2019
Following the storyline of Spider-Man: Homecoming, Spider-Man: Far From Home is the first installation of the MCU’s Phase 4, giving fans a taste of what the future holds for their favorite characters. From what we have seen so far, in the film, Peter Parker is sent on a school trip across Europe when he encounters new menaces including Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio. Peter Parker arises from the ashes of Thanos’ snap and comes to a theater near you on July 5th, 2019.
- Black Widow: No confirmed release date
After the introduction of Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow) in Iron Man 2 in 2010 and her fantastic character development throughout the numerous Avengers movies, the fans have been craving a standalone Black Widow film. The fans asked and the creators finally have responded with a confirmed movie directed by widely revered Cate Shortland. Although the crew has started filming and a director has been recruited, there is no confirmed date for when the movie is set to be released.
- Black Panther 2: Rumored to be released February 12th, 2021
With Marvel’s explosive debut of Black Panther in early 2018, it was obvious that Disney would confirm future productions surrounding the character after it’s $1.344 billion box office earnings. There has been little speculation as to what the film will focus on, considering the fact that King T’challa was turned to dust in Avengers Infinity Wa, but writer and director Ryan Coogler is set to come back and bring our Wakandan patriotism back to life.
- Doctor Strange 2: May 2021
After the release of Doctor Strange in 2016 and it’s explosive end credits scene in which Baron Mordo vowed to rid the world of all sorcerers, many assumed that it was a guarantee that Marvel would give us a sequel. With Scott Derrickson at the helm, fans are excited to see what’s next for their new favorite wizard.
- The Eternals: Possibly November 6th, 2020
Possibly the most anticipated future film for the MCU, The Eternals are an ancient alien race of borne of science experiments conducted by the supreme celestial beings who were initially introduced by Benicio Del Toro’s The Collector in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). The world of the Eternals is filled with limitless possibilities for future storylines, leaving fans with little to expect yet everything to look forward to. Once again Marvel Studios has left us wondering as there is no confirmed information as to how the filmmakers will tackle this extensive project.
- Shang-Chi: No confirmed release date
As the first break out role for an Asian American lead in the MCU, the studio has been looking to bring the character to life after their huge success with Black Panther, which featured an African American lead role and cast. There is no expected plot line for the film. In the comics, however, Shang-Chi is an unparalleled Kung Fu master who joined forces with many well-known fighting groups in the comics, including the Avengers, in order to ward off the evil that his father instilled in him from a young age.
Even though our favorite stories and characters are coming to an end, we can all look optimistically to the future of the MCU and how it plans to replace the characters and storylines that we all have come to love and admire. In the wise words of Peggy Carter, “The world has changed, and none of us can go back. All we can do is our best, and sometimes the best that we can do, is to start over.”