This summer’s mega-blockbuster, “Guardians of the Galaxy,” wraps up what Marvel has been calling “Phase 2.”
Beginning with the third “Iron Man” installment, Marvel shifted the tone for its post-2012 “Avengers” movies and setup a super heroic universe with no arc reactor, no S.H.I.E.L.D, and a machine-gun wielding raccoon.
The new direction paid off both critically and commercially, and now, the studio that continually spins celluloid into gold has announced official plans for what it's calling “Phase 3:”
Avenger: Age of Ultron (5/1/15)
Captain America: Civil War (5/6/2016)
Doctor Strange (11/4/2016)
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (5/5/2017)
Thor: Ragnarok (7/28/2017)
Black Panther (11/3/2017)
Avengers: Infinity War Part I
Captain Marvel (7/6/2018)
Avengers: Infinity War Part II (5/3/2019)
Comic book fans will immediately recognize the “Civil War” subtitle attached to the 2016 “Captain America” movie. A controversial storyline that split reader reaction as well as the Avengers team, “Civil War” finds Captain America and Iron Man on opposing sides of a government superhuman registration act.
Also announced: Chadwick Boseman of the mildly successful “42” has been cast as the “Black Panther” — one of the wealthiest, most dexterous and intelligent heroes in the Marvel lineup. And fans of the “Infinity War” storyline will also notice the first two-part installment of the cinematic universe.
Many of the titles listed, including “Inhumans” and “Ant-Man,” illustrate the studio’s desire to tackle more obscure properties — a risk that paid off earlier this year with “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
To date, Marvel has released a total of 10 films, of which each has opened at No. 1 and together have brought in more than $7 billion. The recent reaction to “Age of Ultron’s” trailer suggests at least the early stages of “Phase 3” will continue that lucrative tradition.
Travis co-hosts the FlixJunkies podcast. You can contact Travis at firstname.lastname@example.org.