This past Comic-Con, Marvel Studios gave us their release dates and titles for their next five films. Being named Phase Four, this is supposed to start Marvel’s next big era.
Expectations were also high, as Marvel now had access to Fantastic Four and X-Men. But a shock came as no sequels for Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Guardians of the Galaxy, or Spider-Man were announced. (To my knowledge a new Spider-Man film wasn’t even mentioned at the event!)
Fantastic Four and X-Men also received no official announcement. Kevin Feige, President and Spokesmen of Marvel Studios simply said these films are in development.
Many, myself included, assumed that the five films announced (titles, and release dates here) was only a partial list. But Kevin Feige confirmed that Phase Four is only two years, and five films long. That marks this as Marvel’s shortest slot of releases yet.
Even with the five new television series announced, many saw this as a short, and somewhat incomplete list of what Marvel could offer. It could be assumed that Marvel needs to take time before building to another Avengers movie I don’t Marvel is taking their time with the new Phase and I think it’s the opposite.
They no longer have to establish a large spiralling universe. They don’t need to spend four years slowly building up to a big event, as they have the resources to much quicker build to one. They can use TV shows and films to speed up the process. Even if every MCU miniseries is only three episodes, and only 40 minutes each, that means we are receiving what is essentially a full-length movie with each show.
Marvel no longer has to give themselves time, as they can truly expand beyond movies and can rely on their brand and name being purchased across media. We know that Scarlet Witch will be in Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness and I’d be shocked if the Guardians didn’t show up in Thor: Love and Thunder.
We can expect cameos and even other characters to co-star throughout the various films. Marvel has done this in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Thor: Ragnarok and Spider-Man: Homecoming. Team ups and small groups can be great, as they provide more characters to use, and help expand and extend character’s storylines. It’s faster, and I expect Marvel to do it more in the next few years.
Although we will have to wait a couple extra years to see some fan favourites in their own proper sequels, I think Marvel has hit the point where they can wait for the right time to do sequels. Let them cameo in other films and knit the universe together like a heavy sweater.
Written by Blake Preston