Marvel’s Phase Four — Everything We Know Entertainment by technoxm - May 7, 2021July 13, 20210 Marvel’s upcoming movies and TV shows promise a future that is wild — and massive. The return of Doctor Strange and Black Panther. The third adventures for Deadpool, Spider-Man, Ant-Man and the Wasp, and Guardians of the Galaxy. A fourth chapter for Thor (and the Asgardians of the Galaxy). Elsewhere, the old guard — Hulk, Hawkeye, Captain America, and Black Widow — will pass the torch. Some of them are still sticking around though: Loki, Nick Fury, and War Machine (it seems). Additionally, we have new heroes entering the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Shang-Chi, Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, Ironheart, and Blade. And even new superhero teams with Eternals, Fantastic Four, and the X-Men. The best news? This is all happening soon. In the span of 11 years from 2008 and 2019, Marvel Studios released 23 movies dubbed as the Infinity Saga. It all culminated in Avengers: Endgame, the biggest superhero movie of all time. And as it turns out, this was just Marvel warming up. We know about 28 Marvel Studios projects that will release in the next few years, with at least 10 movies and 10 TV shows expected before the end of 2023. MCU characters will routinely cross over between properties on the big and small screen, just as WandaVision’s Scarlet Witch is headed to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, while her co-star Monica Rambeau will be seen in The Marvels. These frequent tiny gatherings will take over from the Avengers movies that brought everyone together. Yes, unfortunately, the MCU’s Phase Four won’t have a single Avengers title, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has said: “Avengers: Endgame [was] very much an ending to so many … characters. So Phase 4 is about beginnings.” That means we won’t see a film on the scale of Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame anytime soon, but in lieu of those, we’re going to get a series of interlocking adventures. Almost like one giant TV show, just as the MCU has always been from the start. This list goes beyond Phase 4 and includes every Marvel title we know about. It does not include non-canonical entries such as Marvel’s What If…?, or the series of shorts like I Am Groot. MCU upcoming movies and series MCU in 2021 Loki Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: June 9Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Tom Hiddleston’s Loki keeps dying but Marvel keeps finding a way to bring him back. This time around, it’s the Loki we briefly met in Endgame, when Iron Man and Captain America travelled back in time to the events of 2012’s The Avengers. That version of Loki escaped with the Tesseract and his manipulation of timelines has run him afoul of the Time Variance Authority, as the Loki trailers reveal. And because this is an earlier Loki, it means he hasn’t had any of that character growth from Thor: The Dark World, let alone Thor: Ragnarok. Owen Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Wunmi Mosaku, Sophia Di Martino, Richard E. Grant, Sasha Lane, Erika Coleman, and Eugene Cordero are also part of the Loki cast. Michael Waldron (Rick and Morty) is the creator and head writer, with Kate Herron (Sex Education) directing all episodes. Loki is Marvel’s first ongoing series and as such, a second season is already in development. Season 1 will tie into the events of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Watch the New Trailer for Loki Black Widow Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: July 9Where: Cinemas and Disney+ with Premier Access Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff/ Black Widow finally gets her standalone movie, even if it feels at least five years too late. And that’s part of why Black Widow is in fact set five years ago, after the events of Captain America: Civil War, with Romanoff confronting the past she left behind. Turns out it’s the family she had before she had her Avengers family, featuring two more Black Widows — sister-figure Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) and mother-figure Melina Vostokoff (Rachel Weisz) alongside Red Guardian father-figure Alexei Shostakov (David Harbour). This is all happening because Marvel wants to pass the Black Widow baton to Pugh, just as it did with the Captain America mantle in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and will do for Hawkeye, Hulk and Iron Man in upcoming Disney+ series. Speaking of Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. has a cameo, as does Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, while the villain is Taskmaster though Marvel won’t tell us which actor is playing him just yet. Cate Shortland (Berlin Syndrome) is the Black Widow director, and Eric Pearson (Thor: Ragnarok) is the writer. Watch the New Trailer for Black Widow Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Photo Credit: Jasin Boland/Marvel Studios When: September 3Where: Cinemas After Black Panther gave Marvel movies its first African superhero in the lead and delivered a super hit, the MCU is now attempting to do the same for the Asian audience with the introduction of Shang-Chi (Simu Liu). At the same time, Shang-Chi is also possibly an attempt at catering to the massive Chinese market that has become huge for the MCU’s box office returns. Also part of the cast are Awkwafina, Tony Leung as Shang-Chi’s father and the original Mandarin, Michelle Yeoh, Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu, and Ronny Chieng. Destin Daniel Cretton (Short Term 12) directs off a screenplay he co-wrote with David Callaham (Wonder Woman 1984) and Andrew Lanham (Just Mercy). Watch the First Trailer for Shang-Chi Ms. Marvel Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: Late 2021Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Following Shang-Chi, the second Asian superhero from Marvel Studios will be Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani), a Muslim teenager of Pakistani origin who is a huge superhero fan — she even writes fan fiction — who ends up gaining powers of her own. Co-starring are Aramis Knight as the vigilante Kareem/ Red Dagger, Saagar Shaikh as Kamala’s older brother Amir Khan, Matt Lintz as Kamala’s best friend Bruno Carrelli, Mohan Kapur as Kamala’s father Yusuf Khan, Zenobia Shroff as Kamala’s mother Muneeba Khan, and Rish Shah as the male lead Kamran. Yasmeen Fletcher, Laith Naki, Azher Usman, Travina Springer, and Nimra Bucha are also part of the Ms. Marvel cast. Bisha K. Ali (Four Weddings and a Funeral) is the Ms. Marvel creator. Directors include Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, and Meera Menon. Filming ran from November 2020 – May 2021. Vellani’s Kamala Khan will later join Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers/ Captain Marvel and WandaVision star Teyonah Parris’ Monica Rambeau in The Marvels, the sequel to Captain Marvel. Here’s Your First Look at Ms. Marvel Hawkeye Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: Late 2021Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton is the last of the original six from The Avengers to get his own Marvel Studios project, and like Black Widow, this one is also about handing over the baton to the next generation — while exploring previously unexplored parts of their lives. That means we will see more of Renner as Ronin, that sword-wielding avatar of his from Avengers: Endgame. And in present day, he will train Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop to be the next Hawkeye. Along for the ride are Vera Farmiga as Kate’s mother Eleanor Bishop, Fra Fee as the mercenary villain Kazimierz “Kazi” Kazimierczak, Tony Dalton as Clint’s early mentor Jack Duquesne, Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez/ Echo who can copy anyone’s movements, and Zahn McClarnon as Maya’s father William Lopez. Black Widow‘s Florence Pugh will also return as Yelena Belova. Brian d’Arcy James has an undisclosed role. Jonathan Igla (Mad Men) is the creator, with Rhys Thomas (John Mulaney & the Sack Lunch Bunch) and Bert & Bertie (Troop Zero) set as directors. Filming ran from December 2020 – April 2021. Eternals Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: Late OctoberWhere: Cinemas Oscar-winner Chloé Zhao brings together a fascinating ensemble — Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Salma Hayek, Gemma Chan, Brian Tyree Henry, Kit Harington, and Don Lee among others — for this introduction of the titular immortal alien race that has been living in disguise on Earth for thousands of years. Spurred on by a tragedy following Avengers: Endgame, they reunite to protect humanity from their evil counterparts, the Deviants. All the Eternals draw their powers from cosmic energy. Jolie’s Thena can form weapons, Madden’s Ikaris can fly and shoot beams from his eyes like Superman, Nanjiani’s Kingo can deploy projectiles from his hands, Hayek’s Ajak can heal, Chan’s Sersi can manipulate matter, Henry’s Phastos invents stuff, and Lee’s Gilgamesh can craft an exoskeleton. We also have Lauren Ridloff as Makkari who can speed across planets, Lia McHugh’s Sprite who can create lifelike illusions, and Barry Keoghan’s Druig who can control minds. That’s a massive ensemble, with Feige noting that Sersi comes closest to being the lead in Eternals. Phastos will be Marvel Studios’ first gay superhero while Makkari will be the first deaf superhero in the MCU. Here’s Your First Look at Eternals Spider-Man: No Way Home Photo Credit: Sony Pictures When: December 17Where: Cinemas Tom Holland has described his next Peter Parker outing as “the most ambitious standalone superhero film of all time” — and he might have a point. After all, it’s already confirmed that both Jamie Foxx and Alfred Molina will return as villains Electro (The Amazing Spider-Man 2) and Doctor Octopus (Spider-Man 2), respectively. It’s going full multiverse. On top of that, Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire — the two previous versions of Spider-Man — might also have cameos, though both Holland and Garfield have denied this, for what it’s worth. Though everyone lied to us about Avengers: Endgame so it’s hard to say. That’s not all. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange will appear as Holland’s new mentor — chiefly because the film will tie into Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. There’s that multiverse word again. And of course, Holland’s co-stars will return as well, including Zendaya as girlfriend MJ, Jacob Batalon as best friend Ned Leeds, Marisa Tomei as May Parker, J.B. Smoove as teacher Julius Dell, Tony Revolori as classmate Eugene Thompson, and Hannibal Buress as gym teacher Coach Wilson. Here’s Your First Look at Spider-Man: No Way Home MCU in 2022 Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: March 25, 2022Where: Cinemas WandaVision, Loki, and Spider-Man: No Way Home all lead into the Doctor Strange sequel that will also pay off on the post-credits scene from the first film, with Stephen Strange’s (Cumberbatch) friend-turned-enemy Karl Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor) hunting other sorcerers like them. And given Wanda Maximoff/ Scarlet Witch’s (Elizabeth Olsen) involvement, it will also reveal what exactly is going on with her children Tommy and Billy. Also returning from Doctor Strange are Benedict Wong as Strange’s friend Wong and Rachel McAdams as Strange’s love interest Christine Palmer. Joining them is Xochitl Gomez as America Chavez — she would be the second LGBTQ superhero in the MCU — which further lends credence to the fact that Marvel Studios is building up Young Avengers. Spider-Man veteran Sam Raimi is in the director’s chair, working off a screenplay by Jade Bartlett and Michael Waldron (Loki). Filming ran from November 2020 – April 2021. Thor: Love and Thunder Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: May 6, 2022Where: Cinemas Having reinvigorated the franchise, Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi has the reins to this fourth Thor instalment that bestows Thor’s mantle and powers onto his ex-girlfriend Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) — christened as the Mighty Thor — who is undergoing cancer treatment. Chris Hemsworth is still around, don’t worry. The other storyline revolves around New Asgard’s new king Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) looking for her queen, which makes her the third LGBTQ superhero and the first technically, though references to her bisexuality were unfortunately erased from Ragnarok. Christian Bale joins the fray as the villain Gorr the God Butcher. We will also have the Guardians of the Galaxy — including Peter Quill/ Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Drax (Dave Bautista), Nebula (Karen Gillan), and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) — along for the ride, given Hemsworth’s Thor boarded their ship at the end of Avengers: Endgame. Jaimie Alexander’s Sif and Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster are also back. Russell Crowe will cameo as Zeus. As will Matt Damon playing stage Loki opposite Melissa McCarthy as Hela, reenacting scenes from Ragnarok. Waititi co-wrote the screenplay with Jennifer Kaytin Robinson (Someone Great). Filming ran from January – May 2021. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: July 8, 2022Where: Cinemas Following Chadwick Boseman’s death from colon cancer, the Black Panther sequel has been forced to shift focus to the rest of the Wakandan entourage, as Marvel maintains that the role of T’Challa (Boseman) will not be recast. It’s been reported that Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett and Winston Duke will all return, in their respective roles of T’Challa’s sister Shuri, his former lover and spy Nakia, his mother Ramonda, and tribe leader M’Baku. Shuri has been floated as the natural next leader, but Wright’s anti-vax comments have made the decision more complicated for Marvel. Martin Freeman, who played CIA agent Everett Ross, has revealed he will be back. Narcos: Mexico star Tenoch Huerta will reportedly play one of the villains. Ryan Coogler returns as writer and director on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Filming begins June/ July 2021. The Marvels Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: November 11, 2022Where: Cinemas Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers/ Captain Marvel will be joined by WandaVision star Teyonah Parris’ Monica Rambeau and Iman Vellani’s Kamala Khan/ Ms. Marvel who is also coming off a Disney+ series. Monica has also held the Captain Marvel moniker in the comics so naturally all together, they are “The Marvels”. But could Marvel Studios also be referencing the limited comic book series that was recently rebooted? In the comics world, The Marvels is about literally the whole of the Marvel universe, and features superheroes, regular folks and beyond. It seems unlikely that a Captain Marvel sequel would go so broad but the MCU continues to surprise us. For what it’s worth, Feige has said that Ms. Marvel will set up The Marvels so we will know more before the end of 2021. Nia DaCosta (Little Woods) is The Marvels director, Megan McDonnell (WandaVision) is the writer. Filming begins in May 2021. She-Hulk Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: 2022Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Continuing the MCU trend of second-generation heroes, Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner/ Hulk invites his cousin Jennifer Walters, played by Tatiana Maslany, into the scheme of things. In the comics, Walters is a lawyer who specialises in superhero-oriented legal cases and ends up as She-Hulk after she gets a blood transfusion from Banner. Too bad Marvel isn’t doing anything about that name though, even as it’s doing better elsewhere (with Thor and Hawkeye). After all, Bruce Banner isn’t He-Hulk, is he? Why couldn’t the series just be called Hulk? Anyhoo, Ruffalo and Maslany will be joined by the returning Tim Roth as Emil Blonsky/ Abomination (from The Incredible Hulk), in addition to Ginger Gonzaga as Walters’ unnamed best friend and Renée Elise Goldsberry as a character called Amelia. Jessica Gao (Rick and Morty) is the creator on the 10-episode She-Hulk. Kat Coiro (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) and Anu Valia (Lucia, Before and After) are the directors. Filming runs from April – August 2021. Moon Knight Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: 2022Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Oscar Isaac plays Marc Spector/ Moon Knight, a former US Marine suffering from dissociative identity disorder who believes himself to be the conduit of Egyptian moon god Khonshu after a near death experience. He’s going to be up against Ethan Hawke as the main villain, while Ramy star May Calamawy — she is of Egyptian and Palestinian heritage — is said to have a “key role”. Feige has said that Moon Knight will be a bit like Marvel’s Indiana Jones, infused with Egyptology and mental illness. Jeremy Slater (The Umbrella Academy) is the creator on the six-episode Moon Knight. Mohamed Diab (Cairo 678), and the duo Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead (Synchronic) are the directors. Filming began in April 2021. The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: Holiday 2022Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Very little detail here, except that it will take place between the events of Thor: Love and Thunder and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. It will likely bridge the gap to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 as well, since it would have been over five years since we saw that movie. James Gunn will write and direct The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special — featuring all of the returning main cast — and filming will take place while Vol. 3 is in production. MCU in 2023 Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: February 17, 2023Where: Cinemas Lovecraft Country star Jonathan Majors is the new villain Kang the Conqueror for the third Ant-Man movie that will seemingly involve a lot more of the Quantum Realm that we briefly entered in 2018’s Ant-Man and the Wasp. Of course, Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Evangeline Lilly’s Hope van Dyne/ Wasp will return, as will their original older counterparts, Hope’s parents Hank Pym and Janet van Dyne, played respectively by Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer. Kathryn Newton is the other new cast member — she will play Scott’s grown-up daughter Cassie Lang, taking over from Emma Fuhrmann who played her in Avengers: Endgame. Peyton Reed returns as director on Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, with Jeff Loveness (Rick and Morty) responsible for the screenplay. Some filming was done in February 2021. Principal production runs from May – September 2021. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios When: May 5, 2023Where: Cinemas James Gunn was fired (over old offensive tweets) and then rehired (following a cast-led campaign) by Disney on the third Guardians movie. But with Gunn taking up The Suicide Squad at DC between those developments, that has resulted in the six-year gap between the instalments. (The gap was only three years between the first two films.) All of Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, and Sean Gunn are expected to return. (We will see many of them in Thor: Love and Thunder as well, and The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special.) And if Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has any interest in paying off on its predecessor’s five post-credits scenes, we will also have Elizabeth Debicki’s golden Ayesha and her new creation Adam Warlock. Filming scheduled to begin late 2021. Marvel Cinematic Universe future Secret Invasion Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Olivia Colman and Emilia Clarke are part of a fascinating cast for this “crossover event” led by Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury and Ben Mendelsohn’s Talos. Though it’s based on the comic arc of the same name, Feige has said it will be much smaller in scope. Secret Invasion reveals that a faction of shape-shifting Skrulls have been infiltrating Earth for years. One Night in Miami… star Kingsley Ben-Adir is playing the Skrull leader. Kyle Bradstreet (Mr. Robot) is the creator on the six-episode Secret Invasion. Filming expected to begin in late 2021. Ironheart Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Judas and the Black Messiah star Dominique Thorne’s Riri Williams/ Ironheart is at the centre of this series that carries forward the “Iron” moniker for the MCU. In the comics, Williams is a MIT student and genius inventor who designs the most advanced suit of armour since Tony Stark/ Iron Man. Chinaka Hodge (Snowpiercer on Netflix) is the creator and head writer on the six-episode Ironheart. Armor Wars Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Don Cheadle’s James Rhodes/ War Machine leads the other post-Iron Man series as he must save the day after Tony Stark’s tech falls into the wrong hands, something Stark feared all along. Rhodes must do whatever it takes to get it back or destroy it for good. Armor Wars will also explore the fallout of Stark’s death. Filming expected to begin in 2021. Deadpool 3 Photo Credit: Disney/Fox Where: Cinemas Ryan Reynolds’ Wade Wilson/ Deadpool is the only mutant to cross over from the now-defunct X-Men universe, with Marvel turning the rest to dust after Disney’s acquisition of Fox. And possibly for good reason — while X-Men died a slow death at the box office, the Deadpool series turned out to be the most successful entries of the lot. And though Deadpool 3 will be part of the MCU, it’s going to retain its R rating / “A” certificate in India. Reynolds is overseeing the Deadpool 3 script from writing duo Lizzie Molyneux-Loeglin and Wendy Molyneux (Bob’s Burgers, The Great North). Filming won’t begin before 2022. Fantastic Four Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Cinemas Marvel’s first family is joining the MCU, again thanks to Disney’s acquisition of its previous rights owner Fox. And Feige has picked director Jon Watts, best known for helming Tom Holland’s Spider-Man trilogy, including Homecoming, Far From Home, and No Way Home. Blade Photo Credit: Disney/Fox Where: Cinemas Mahershala Ali will step into the shoes of Wesley Snipes/ Blade for this reboot that brings the character into the MCU. Stacy Osei-Kuffour, a writer on Watchmen and Run both for HBO, is the writer on Blade. Filming begins in July 2022. Untitled X-Men movie Where: Cinemas At the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con, Feige said Marvel Studios was developing a new take on mutants but we haven’t heard anything about it since then. Untitled Wakanda series Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Black Panther director Ryan Coogler will help develop a TV show set in the futuristic kingdom of Wakanda, as part of a five-year deal his production company Proximity Media signed with Disney. In the announcement, Coogler revealed that Proximity would make more MCU projects for Disney+: “We are especially excited that we will be taking our first leap with Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso and their partners at Marvel Studios where we will be working closely with them on select MCU shows for Disney+. We’re already in the mix on some projects that we can’t wait to share.” Untitled Echo series Photo Credit: Marvel Where: Disney+ and Disney+ Hotstar Hawkeye‘s Echo/ Maya Lopez, played by Alaqua Cox, will be the first Native American superhero and the second deaf superhero in the MCU. Like Taskmaster from Black Widow, she is completely adept at copying her opponents’ movements thanks to photographic reflexes. I would imagine that some Hawkeye cast members will also feature. Husband-wife duo Etan Cohen (Tropic Thunder) and Emily Cohen are reportedly the creators on the Echo series. Captain America 4 Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Where: Cinemas Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson/ Captain America will no doubt be the focus of the fourth Captain America film, having taken up the mantle in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. The shows’ villains might factor as well, including Emily VanCamp’s Sharon Carter/ Power Broker who’s now back at her old US government job, and Wyatt Russell’s morally-dubious John Walker/ US Agent who works for Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ mysterious Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine. Malcolm Spellman and Dalan Musson (The Falcon and the Winter Soldier) are said to be writing Captain America 4.