By Tara Bennett
For casual and die-hard fans alike, Christmas came early at the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood when Marvel Studios recently announced their plans for Phase 3 of their Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) franchise. Marvel movie mastermind Kevin Feige revealed the upcoming titles along with their release dates, which gives the film lovers superhero action until nearly 2020.
Here are the upcoming Marvel titles and why you should be excited.
Captain America 3: Civil War (May 6th, 2016)
Marvel did a complete fake-out on this film by first proclaiming that Captain America 3 would be titled Captain America 3: Serpent Society, but the film appears to be based on one of Marvel’s most infamous comic storylines instead. In the comics, Civil War sees the superhero community split in two over the question of whether heroes should have to register themselves with the government and receive standardized training. Captain America is against it, and Iron Man is for it.
It has been confirmed that Robert Downey Jr. will put on the Iron Man suit once more in this movie. This means we’ll probably see tensions mount between Tony Stark and Steve Rogers as they do in the storyline; however, the film won’t follow the comic exactly as confirmed by Feige. This is due to the fact that Marvel does not own the movie rights to several major players in the Civil War comic, such as Spider-Man and the X-Men.
Why should I be excited: This will be Marvel’s version of Batman v. Superman.
Doctor Strange (November 4th, 2016)
Doctor Strange tells the story of Stephen Strange, a brilliant but ultimately cocky neurosurgeon who possesses supernatural abilities the likes of which have never been seen in a MCU film.
Marvel Studios’ films have covered a fair amount of genres. Captain America’s movies have been a period piece and a political thriller, Thor’s have been mythical fantasy meshed with science and Guardians of the Galaxy was a grand space opera. With Doctor Strange, there are hopes the movie will embrace all the spectacle that comes with dealing in the realm of the supernatural.
Rumors are buzzing if star Benedict Cumberbatch will play the role, but since there was no announcement at the El Capitan, it is likely he is still in negotiations. No details on the plot just yet.
Why should I be excited: Doctor Strange has a big personality.
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (May 5th, 2017)
Oh, yeah the ragtag group of miscreants is back. With Dancing Groot becoming one of the must-have gifts for Christmas 2014, this is no surprise. While no details have been revealed about the film other than the release date, this is one film audiences will be anxious to see after the success of the first film. And with Marvel’s Infinity War looming on the horizon, it’s possible that Guardians 2 will be the bridge that brings Thanos and his all-powerful glove to Earth.
Why should I be excited: Awesome Mix vol. 2… ‘nuff said.
Thor 3: Ragnarok (July 28th, 2017)
The third installment of the Thor films focuses on Thor and the immediate aftermath of Age of Ultron. The term Ragnarok refers to the end of days for the Norse gods, but what that means for Thor and the rest of Asgard is unclear.
Why should I be excited: Tom Hiddleston has been confirmed he will return as Loki.
Black Panther (November 3rd, 2017)
It’s about time. This sorely underrated character has the potential to become one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s coolest and most badass heroes. Black Panther is the first black superhero in mainstream comics and plays an important role in Marvel lore. It’s been confirmed that Chadwick Boseman, star of “42: The Jackie Robinson Story,” has been cast as Black Panther. No story details, but there are possibilities that things will revolve around him protecting his home of Wakanda, which generates the world’s supply of vibranium (remember that vibranium is what Captain America’s shield is made out of).
Why should I be excited: It’ll be the first Marvel film with a person of color in the lead.
Captain Marvel (July 6th, 2018)
Very exciting! Feige confirmed that the Captain Marvel we will be seeing on the big screen is Carol Danvers herself. Danvers is one of the most powerful heroes in the Marvel Universe, capable of interstellar flight and energy absorption, and possesses super strength. All of that puts her among the elite of Marvel superheroes and a fine choice for the first MCU film to star a female superhero. While people are anxious for a Black Widow film, this is certainly the next best thing.
Why should I be excited: Female lead in a Marvel film.
Inhumans (November 2nd, 2018)
This movie will bring in several new characters and also help explore more of the cosmic side of the MCU. The Inhumans are described as a race who are more evolutionarily advanced than the rest of the world, and are led by a royal family in the Himalayas.
Why should I be excited: There’s the possibility there could be a crossover with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Avengers: Infinity Wars Part 1 (May 4, 2018) and Part 2 (May 3, 2019)
Everything in the MCU has been leading up to this. It looks like Phase 3 will culminate in the epic story of the Infinity Gauntlet, which was first strongly hinted at in the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy with our first look at Thanos, who’ll serve as the major villain as he leads an intergalactic war full of chaos.
Why should I be excited: One film wasn’t enough for one of the biggest events in Marvel history.