Marvel Studios has several decades’ worth of source material to draw from in making their films, which means a ridiculous number of characters that they could potentially bring into the saga. This leaves producer Kevin Feige and his team with a lot of options on the kind of casts they want to assemble, with each fresh face likely to alter the character dynamics of the interconnected universe at large in some small way.
It’s a topic that’s touched on in an interview with Feige that’s featured in the new book Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years. When the studio head was asked how he knows that a character is going to connect with audiences, he explained how the decisions ultimately went down to gut instinct:
“We believe that what we’re working on has value. The risks and creative chances that we’re taking are in service to creating something an audience will respond to, something unique and different. I believe deeply that’s what filmgoers want – to be surprised and to have expectations exceeded. You don’t know until it’s out, but all we’ve done since Phase One is go with our gut.”
Marvel’s “villain problem” aside, the MCU has rarely struck a bum note with fans when it comes to the characters they introduce. But while the franchise has shown that it knows how to bring heroes into the action, we’re likely approaching the point where this saga is going to have to start cutting down on its numbers to make room for new blood.
One viewing of Avengers: Infinity War and you’ll see that Thanos has a point when he speaks of an overpopulated universe, especially if Marvel Studios intends to introduce even more characters for Phase 4. With that in mind, many fans are predicting that the franchise may have a little population purge of its own when Avengers 4 hits theaters on May 3rd, 2019, and if the common speculation is anything to go by, then the Phase 1 players like Tony Stark and Steve Rogers may have reason to be very worried.