What you need to know
- Kevin Feige announced the upcoming slate of MCU movies and TV shows through 2021.
- Shang-Chi gets a full title, along with its star. A returning name also will make an appearance.
- Doctor Strange 2 gets its full title.
- Natalie Portman will be returning to the MCU to "possess the powers of Thor."
Marvel Studios went all-in on San Diego Comic-Con this year, announcing not only the bulk of its Phase 4, which includes movies and TV, but also the stars of some of its upcoming releases, along with some major surprises.
Kevin Feige took to the stage in Hall H on Saturday and went all-in with major announcements about Phase 4, which to this point has been kept under wraps. With Endgame having major reprucussions for the MCU, audiences were waiting to see what the future of the MCU even looked like.
The biggest question here was which movies would be involved in Phase 4. For the first time in the franchise's history, however, it looks like the TV shows are a major part of that slate, with scattered releases set through 2021.
The following are all the movies and shows planned for Phase 4 in chronological order.
The first movie to be released as a part of Phase 4 is Black Widow, the standalone movie starring Scarlett Johansson as the super spy. It'll be kicking off the next block of Marvel films with a theatrical release on May 1, 2020.
A few small details were revealed, including that Florence Pugh will be playing Yelena Belova, a character from the comics who also takes on the name Black Widow.
Footage shown durng the panel also seemed to confirm that the movie takes place after the events of Civil War.
The panel at Hall H on Saturday kicked off with Kevin Feige announcing the cast of The Eternals. While a lot of the actors had already been confirmed, we learned which characters they'll be playing. The list includes:
- Angelina Jolie as Thena
- Richard Madden as Ikaris
- Kumail Nanjiani as Kingo
- Lauren Ridloff as Makkari
- Brian Tyree Henry as Phastos
- Salma Hayek as Ajak
- Lia McHugh as Sprite
- Don Lee as Gilgamesh, the Forgotten One
Plot details are still being kept under wraps but the film is slated for release on Nov. 6, 2020.
Falcon and the Winter Soldier
Next up is Falcon and the Winter Soldier, the Disney+ show starring Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan as the two characters, respectively. Daniel Bruhl will also be returning as Baron Zemo.
We're still unsure what the plot of the show will be and how Sam Wilson will be handling his new responsibilities after Steve passed on the Captain America shield at the end of Endgame. A couple details were revealed at the panel, however, including that Zemo will be sporting his purple mask from the comics in the show (a brief video of Zemo was played in Hall H, in which he said "Gentlemen, I'll see you soon."
We don't have a specific release date, but the show is set to debut in Fall 2020.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
One of the fullest announcement blocks came with Shang-Chi, which not only got a full title, but a lot of cast announcements, including who will be playing the main character. We first heard of the movie in Dec. 2018, when Marvel announced that it had hired Expendables writer David Callaham to write the script.
Feige announced that Simu Liu will be playing the title character after a long search. Liu is best known by audiences from the sitcom Kim's Convenience, but he's also appeared in the Taken TV show and The Expanse.
Thanks for getting back to me https://t.co/FFRuM03p20— Simu Liu (@SimuLiu) July 21, 2019
Comedian and musician Awkwafina was also announced as a cast member, although her role hasn't been disclosed.
The second-biggest announcement was arguably that Tony Leung was cast as the real Mandarin (yes, the "real" was emphasized). Audiences will remember that a version of the character was introduced in Iron Man 3, but turned out to be an actor named Trevor Slattery hired by Aldrich Killian. However, in the 2014 short All Hail the King, Slattery was broken out of prison to meet the real Mandarin.
This one will hit theaters Feb. 12, 2021.
The TV show starring Scarlett Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and the Vision (Paul Bettany) will be next on the docket.
Plot details are still being kept close to the chest, but a major new cast member was brought out onto the Hall H stage. Feige announced that Teyonah Parris will be playing a grown-up version of Monica Rambeau, the daughter of Maria, who was introduced in Captain Marvel earlier this year.
The show will premiere in Spring 2021 on Disney+.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Doctor Strange 2 has been on the Marvel docket for quite a while, but at Comic-con we finally got a title. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (arguably one of the weirdest titles in the MCU so far) is set to be the introduction of "horror" into the MCU, according to director Scott Derrickson, who was on hand to talk about the sequel.
In a surprise, it was announced also that Elizabeth Olsen will co-star alongside Benedict Cumberbatch and that the events of Wandavision will lead directly into the movie.
Makes sense then that Spring 2021 is shaping up to be one of the busiest seasons for Marvel Studios for Phase 4. Doctor Strange 2 is set to hit theaters on May 7.
Tom Hiddleston came out on the Hall H stage to talk a bit about Loki, the upcoming Disney+ series about the God of Mischief. While the character died in Infinity War, a past version of the trickster stole the Tesseract and disappeared through a portal in Endgame.
The show will also debut in Spring 2021 on Disney+.
What if...? is not only the first animated series from Marvel Studios, it's also, surprisingly, set in the MCU canon, according to the Hall H panel. Obviously the point of What if...? is that it allows the franchise to explore alternate universe stories, but major actors from movies past will be returning to voice roles, including Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter.
The big announcement today is that Jeffrey Wright (Westworld) was cast to voice The Watcher.
"The Watcher is a non-earthly being who observes all things. He's watching over the multi-verse and occasionally may or may not intervene with the doings of earthlings," Wright explained on stage.
The series will stream exclusively on Disney+ in summer 2021.
When the Hawkeye TV series was announced earlier this year, we learned that the mini-series would involve Clint Barton, played by Jeremy Renner, passing the torch along to Kate Bishop, a character from the comics that also uses the moniker Hawkeye.
To drive home the Kate Bishop angle, Marvel revealed the logo, which is done in the style and font from the comics, which were created by Allan Heinberg and artist Jim Cheung.
Further casting wasn't announced at SDCC. The show is set to debut on Disney+ in fall 2021.
Thor: Love and Thunder
We learned earlier this week that Taika Waititi, the director of Thor: Ragnarok, was returning to direct Thor 4, but that was only the beginning of what Marvel had in store for Thor announcements this week.
The next entry in the franchise will be called Thor: Love and Thunder, and will see a number of actors returning, including Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie. The big surprise here, however, is that Natalie Portman will be returning as Jane Foster. Not only that, but she'll be Thor.
This is an echo of a big recent comics storyline where Jane wields Mjolnir as Thor. Portman hasn't been seen in the MCU in a major way since Thor: The Dark World, although she made a recent, brief cameo in Avengers: Endgame.
Marvel still managed to cram in some announcements at the very end of the panel.
One of the most surprising announcements from the end of the panel was that the MCU will soon include the half-vampire Blade and will be played by Oscar winner Mahershala Ali.
There isn't a release date yet for the movie.
For how many things Marvel announced Saturday, there was surprisingly no update on Black Panther 2, Captain Marvel 2, and Guardians 3, although they're all confirmed. No further details were announced either for whether and how the mutants will be incorporated into the MCu now that Disney owns Twentieth Century Fox. Feige also noted that Fantastic Four is in the works, although nothing else is known on that front.
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