Marvel Universe Is Set Up Into 2021, Says Kevin Feige


For anyone who expects the superhero subgenre any time soon, let it at least be said that Marvel does not agree with you. The head of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige, recently said that Marvel has plans all the way into 2021.

2021? Really? Well, according to Feige, the studio is all set to continue making big budget superhero flicks until the public cries uncle. He claims that plans being made as early as 2006 are now coming to fruition – which means that Marvel knew of the success of The Avengers long before Iron Man premiered. I question that just a little.

Here’s what Feige told Comic Book Movie:

I could arguably say what we’re planning for the year 2021. Will that happen? I don’t know. But what we planned for 2015 in 2006 is happening…Five years ago, looking at our plan, we knew that if Avengers was going to work, the movies had to stand alone. Now we have to prove to the studio that we’re more than just these five characters, these five franchises.

It’s not so far a stretch to say that Marvel could follow through on its plans, especially if it manages to branch out from the five core Avengers characters. Robert Downey Jr. might be awesome, but even he is unlikely to carry on with Iron Man until 2021. With films like Guardians of the Galaxy coming up, and  Ant-ManBlack Panther and Dr. Strange being planned, we could expect sequels to those and many others. The Marvel Universe is an expansive one, after all.

The question that naturally arises, though, is if the public will continue to pay for less and less recognizable characters. These films are very expensive to make – all that CGI, 3D and star salaries – and will have to count on large box office returns to justify their productions. While Marvel films continue to do well at the box office, there are indications that big budget films have reached a tipping point: the less stellar performance of The Wolverine (a Marvel movie), the collapse of big potential franchises like Disney’s The Lone Ranger, not to mention disappointing domestic returns on Pacific Rim. So while the blockbuster isn’t going anywhere any time soon, it is not drawing in the crowds as it once did.

Marvel will continue to push their agenda, though. I have a feeling that Guardians of the Galaxy will be an interesting experiment in whether or not characters that are not easily recognized by the general public have a chance at making a mint at the box office.

What do you think of Feige’s pronouncement? Will Marvel ever see 2021?