Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has just kicked off with Captain America: Civil War and the announced slate of projects runs all the way through to 2019, but that hasn't stopped people debating what comes after Thanos is dependably stopped in Avengers: Infinity War - Part Two.
Well, time to get the speculation train going again, because rumoured slate has found its way online, promising sequels to Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Captain Marvel, Guardians Of The Galaxy, Spider-Man Ant-Man, spin-offs for Black Widow and The Winter Soldier, a New Avengers outing, as well as debut films for Inhumans, Nova and Spider-Woman. Check out the alleged slate of releases below and, afterwards, I'll break down why it's probably !*$%:
Guardians Of The Galaxy Volume 3 (1st May, 2020)Spider-Man: Coming Of Age (10th July, 2020)Doctor Strange 2 (6th November, 2020)Black Widow (5th March, 2021)Inhumans (7th May, 2021)Black Panther 2 (9th July, 2021)Antman 3 [sic] (5th November, 2021)The Winter Soldier (4th February, 2022)The New Avengers (6th May, 2022)Nova (8th July, 2022)Captain Marvel 2 (4th November, 2022)Sentry/Spider-Woman (3rd March, 2023)Inhumans 2 (5th May, 2023)Spider-Man: Greatness Awaits (7th July, 2023)Doctor Strange 3 (3rd November, 2023)
OK, this seems pretty believable at first. You've got a nice mix of sequels to movies we've got, second outings to upcoming films and a few new properties that keeps the series powering forward without losing its existing appeal. But then you noticed that they've missed some out - Infinity War - Part 2 is set for release on 3rd May, 2019, which in Marvel's current three-a-year schedule means we're missing a Fall 2019 and Spring 2020 release. What goes here and why isn't it part of the slate?
After realising that, there's little to distinguish this from any other speculative list (it even came from 4chan) - that "nice mix" I talked about feels more like strict formula, while upping of the number of films a year to four is headache-inducing. There's just doesn't seem to be the balance in film types we've seen from Marvel thus far.
I also don't think Sony would wait four years to make a sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming. That reboot's sequels having names doesn't put me off too much (they'll want to have a proper plan this time), but wasn't half the point of casting a younger Peter Parker so they could focus more on his high school days? Tom Holland will be 27 by the time "Greatness Awaits" would come out, putting us right back in the Garfield problem.
Even if this is real (and if it is, don't bother sending me this article when each of these films is released), it's hard to take too seriously as the MCU's future given how the Phase 3 slate changed so much in the year after being announced, removing Inhumans and adding in Spider-Man: Homecoming and Ant-Man And The Wasp. Let's not get queuing for Nova just yet.
What do you think of the rumour? The MCU's future or someone having a laugh? Let us know your take down in the comments.