Many fans are still reeling from the weekend’s Marvel Studios panel at San Diego Comic-Con, where Kevin Feige took to the stage and laid out the ambitious plans for the next chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Phase Four will be the first that won’t culminate in an Avengers movie, which takes the pressure off trying to compete with the biggest movie in history, and will also be the first that definitively establishes the studio’s television output as canon, thanks to the four new shows set to debut on Disney Plus.
In an interview shortly after the panel, Feige spoke a little more in-depth about his plans for Phase Four and his desire to put a fresh spin on the established MCU formula, saying:
“There is always a bigger vision, and it sort of only comes into view for others as it all solidifies. So ask me again at the end of 2021. But I will say, post-Endgame, we were always about the new. We were always about doing what we always tried to do in Phase One, Two and Three, which is do a film of a character you already know, like Black Widow, in a way that you don’t expect. We wanted to do our big ensemble like we did in Phase Two with Guardians, and that’s what Eternals is. We want to bring in new characters like Shang-Chi, who’s awesome… New versions for Dr. Strange, Thor continuing to surprise and change and evolve.”
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As for the Disney Plus shows, the long-form storytelling will give audiences more time to interact with these characters as well as bringing back some familiar faces that don’t quite fit into the studio’s big screen plans:
“WandaVision will be unlike anything we’ve ever done before, and I’m excited to talk to people more about it, eventually. And you see Daniel Bruhl coming back to Zemo and having more time to spend with these beloved characters in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Loki returning – it’s an embarrassment of riches, all of it extremely thought out by the team at Marvel Studios, to do it in ways that I hope will satisfy fans who are anticipating it, but in a way they are absolutely not expecting it.”
Black Widow will officially kick off Phase Four in May 2020, with The Falcon and the Winter Soldier set to hit Disney Plus in the fall before Eternals lands in cinemas in November. With Avengers: Endgame having altered the entire fabric of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it, it’ll be incredibly exciting for fans to see how the studio moves forward with its next slate of projects and you can bet that they have some very big surprises in store for us.